Tar Heels Top Women's Lacrosse In NCAA Quarterfinals

May 21, 2011

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - A 7-1 University of North Carolina run was too much for the Loyola University Maryland women's lacrosse team to overcome, and the No. 3 seed Tar Heels defeated the No. 6 seed Greyhounds, 16-13, on Saturday afternoon in NCAA Quarterfinals action at Fetzer Field.

Loyola (17-3) wrapped up a record-breaking season in which the Greyhounds tied the school record for wins with 17, and several season and career records fell. North Carolina (15-5) advances to the NCAA Semifinals where it will play the winner of Northwestern and Albany on Friday in Stony Brook, N.Y.

Loyola took a 7-6 lead with 10 minutes, 30 seconds to play in the first half on a Marlee Paton goal, but Corey Donohue scored with 6:48 on the clock, tying the game and sparking a rally that would put the Tar Heels on top for good.

Laura Zimmerman scored twice during the run - once on a free-position shot with time expiring in the first half, and again with 26:42 to go in the game. Her final goal game the Tar Heels a 12-7 advantage.

"North Carolina was so powerful and dominant on the day, and it just kind of got away from us," Head Coach Jen Adams said. "I am so proud of my girls, as they played so hard until the final whistle and really put up a lot of fight. It's a really good sign of the respect they had for the opposition, and they wanted this so bad."

Zimmerman finished with four goals and an assist to lead North Carolina, while Grace Gavin paced all players with five goals and two assists.

In the game, Gavin broke a 32-year old record for goals in a season. She finished 2011 with 71, becoming the first player in Loyola history to cross the 70-goal mark, and topping the 1979 mark of 68 set by Mary Beth Arke.

Gavin concluded her Greyhounds' career with career records in goals (229) and points (311). She finished second all-time with 82 assists and 154 draw controls. Abby Rehfuss will close her career third all-time at Loyola with 153 draw controls, and Cara Filippelli is third with 85 caused turnovers.

In addition to her goals in a season record, Gavin has the single-season points scored mark with 98, and Kellye Gallagher came two caused turnovers from tying Jen Albright for the single-season record in that category. Gallagher finished with 43 this year. Meg Decker totaled 66 draw controls in 2011, the third-best mark all-time and the most by a Loyola player since the NCAA changed the method for tracking draw controls in 2001.

Loyola took its first lead of the game Saturday with 17:51 to play in the first half after Refuss scored the second of back-to-back Loyola goals (Decker had the first) off a Gavin assist. Her goal put Loyola up 3-2.

One goal was Loyola's largest lead in a first half that featured five ties and seven lead changes.

Becky Lynch scored for Loyola, and Gavin scored on a free-position shot with 12:07 left in the half to put Loyola back in front, 5-4. That goal also broke Arke's single-season scoring record.

Corey Donohoe tallied her first of three goals just over a minute later to tie it up, and Marlee Paton tallied her goal that would give Loyola its last lead of the afternoon.

Donohoe's second goal tied it at 6-6 with 6:48 to play, and Brittney Coppa and Kara Cannizzaro scored within 20 seconds of each other to put North Carolina in front, 8-6.

Filippelli stopped the 3-0 run with a goal off a Gavin assist at 3:54, but Lynch tallied another for the Tar Heels 1:31 later.

Loyola appeared to have thwarted a North Carolina opportunity with less than 10 seconds to play in the first half when goalie Kerry Stoofhoff made a save on a Zimmerman shot. The Greyhounds, however, were whistled for a foul, and Zimmerman converted on a low free-position shot with time expiring in the first to send the Tar Heels into the locker room with a 10-7 advantage.

The run continued to start the second as Cannizzaro and Zimmerman scored back-to-back goals for North Carolina, giving the Tar Heels a five-goal lead before Gavin and VanThof scored two in a row for Loyola.

In addition to Gavin's five goals, Decker scored three and Paton tallied two. Rehfuss, VanThof and Fillippelli all registered one for the Greyhounds. VanThof had a career-high seven draw controls, as well, for Loyola.