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The Daily Tar Heel

No. 3 UNC women's soccer earns seventh draw of season against No. 12 Notre Dame

UNC senior midfielder/forward Avery Patterson (15) at the women's soccer game versus Notre Dame at Dorrance Field on Thursday, Oct. 19, 2023. UNC tied Notre Dame 1-1. Photo courtesy of UNC Athletic Communications/Ainsley Fauth.

On Thursday night at Dorrance Field, the No. 3 North Carolina women’s soccer team (9-0-7, 4-0-4 ACC) drew against the No. 12 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (9-2-4, 4-1-2 ACC), 1-1, to earn its seventh draw of the season. 

For the last three games, the North Carolina has faced this same outcome: a 1-1 draw.

As soon as the clock began ticking for the Tar Heels, they were on the attack. In the first 17 minute of play, UNC was able to fire off three shot attempts and found themselves with two corner kick opportunities. 

With momentum on their side, the Tar Heels were able to find the back of the net off the second penalty corner. While playing close at the center of the goal, senior forward Avery Patterson took advantage of a disoriented Notre Dame goalie to hit a quick shot to find the mesh with help from redshirt senior defender Maycee Bell and sophomore defender Tessa Dellarose.

“You know where the goal is in the back of your head and you know that [Bell] is always going to win those headers if it’s a one-on-one,” Patterson said. “Just with the combination of knowing, having confidence in [Bell] and being aware of where the goal is. Just kind of a fun tap in.”

Although North Carolina continued to dominate offensively and got two more shots off while holding Notre Dame to none, the Tar Heels substituted nine players at once with 15 minutes left in the period. With fresh legs facing tired opponents, the Tar Heels were rattle off three quick shot attempts and achieve a corner kick opportunity in the process. However, all of this was in vain, with UNC not being able to convert any goals.

Notre Dame forward Charlie Codd hit a shot into the left side of the mesh against redshirt sophomore Emmie Allen, who was on the complete opposite side of the goal. On their first shot attempt of the night, the Fighting Irish were able to get a goal in the 42nd minute. The Tar Heels increased their attack as the last three minutes of play in the half but as the clock continued to tick their attempts proved to be for nothing. As North Carolina left the field with the scoreboard displaying a 1-1 score, possibilities of a seventh draw this season seemed likely.

As the second period began, UNC resumed its usual aggressive style of play that dominated the early parts of the first half. With both teams working overtime to break the tie, things quickly turned physical. Between pulled hair, shoves and shouts of disapproval at the officials, two yellow cards were issues to Notre Dame and UNC, respectively. From there, frustrations in not finding the net continued to turn into increased physicality. 

Even with their seven shot attempts to Notre Dame's one and three corner kick opportunities in the second half, the Tar Heels were unable to capitalize off anything. UNC ended the contest with a 1-1 draw earning its seventh tie of the season.

For Bell, this was a frustrating loss for a North Carolina team that so clearly outplayed Notre Dame. 

“I think overall we were the better team,” Bell said. “We had most of the possession. It just shows that not always the better team wins in soccer and it's a frustrating sport. [Notre Dame] had their one opportunity and they finished it. We just need to finish more of our opportunities.”

While frustration persisted among the players, head coach Anson Dorrance seemed at ease and proud of the team’s overall effort with only two regular season games left for the Tar Heels.

“To be completely honest, we played pretty well and it’s the classic we dominate a team and outshoot them by whatever the margin is, and on half their shots they score,” Dorrance said. “So, in a way, that’s obviously the nature of the game.”

The Tar Heels will return to Dorrance Field on Sunday at 1 p.m. to play against Syracuse for their last home ACC game of the regular season.


@dthsports |

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