Over the past four years, it seems like Julia Dorsey has seen it all.
As the sixth player in UNC history to compete for both the women’s lacrosse and soccer teams, Dorsey experienced the peak of winning the 2022 NCAA women’s lacrosse championship, as well as the trough of North Carolina's crushing College Cup Final loss to UCLA last year.
But perhaps her toughest challenge yet came this past spring, when Dorsey suffered a season-ending ACL tear.
Before the injury, women's lacrosse head coach Jenny Levy and Dorsey devised a plan: Dorsey was going to play lacrosse in the spring and complete her final semester as a UNC athlete in the fall playing soccer. She would then graduate in the winter and enter the National Women’s Soccer League draft.
"As we know, the best-laid plans don’t always work out," Levy said.
Recovering and watching her team from the sidelines isn't where Dorsey envisioned herself during her final season of collegiate soccer. Still, as the season comes to a close — the team just recognized Dorsey along with its nine other soon-to-be graduates in Sunday's Senior Day festivities — she's making the best of her recovery by assuming an invaluable leadership role among the Tar Heels.
'I know what it takes'
After falling just short last season, UNC women's soccer's mantra this year is "chasing 23 in '23," seeking its 23rd national title. Having won a national championship herself — albeit in a different sport — Dorsey feels she knows firsthand what the Tar Heels need, both on and off the field, in order to achieve their lofty goals.
"I've been there for the highest highs, like winning a national championship," Dorsey said. "I know what it takes and what kind of team culture that takes."