“I knew he was making the run to the front post, so I just tried to whip it in there, and I knew he would get on to the end of it” he said.
Lovejoy described the ball as the perfect cross, something he’s come to expect from Murphy.
Twenty two minutes later, Lovejoy set up teammate Danny Garcia for the Tar Heels’ second goal of the night.
With two defenders surrounding him, Lovejoy managed to back-heel the ball along the end line to a sliding Garcia.
Garcia beat the diving Wolfpack goalkeeper to the ball for the Tar Heels’ second goal. Garcia said he was caught off-guard by Lovejoy’s sneaky pass.
“I wasn’t expecting that, but I’m glad he did it” he said.
Although Garcia may not have been anticipating the pass, Lovejoy said he knew Garcia would be there for the finish.
“Danny is one of those players you just know where he is on the field,” Lovejoy said. “He’s got such a sixth sense for the game.
“Obviously it was a bit of luck, but I knew (Garcia) was making that run behind me, so I just closed my eyes and did it”.
Though in a winning effort, UNC (13-2-1, 5-1-1) was outshot by N.C. State 15-10 on the night.
Coach Carlos Somoano said he was pleased with Friday’s performance, specifically the second half. Following the scoreless first half, Somoano said some changes needed to be made in order to secure a victory.
“We just needed to speed everything up just a little bit and get that final execution” he said.
Both of the Tar Heel goals involved Lovejoy, who just recently made his season debut after missing the first 12 games of the season due to injury. Lovejoy’s return has had already made an immediate effect on the team. In his four games this season, Lovejoy has netted four goals and one nifty assist.
“He brings a lot of energy and he can score goals obviously and help make goals” Murphy said. “It’s really great to have him back.”
Somoano added that his experience from last season has helped make his transition back into the lineup.
“He’s a constant threat, he goes for goal, he’s got this extra-aggressive nature and he’s a returner.” Somoano said. “Robbie has that immediate impact.”