UNC Stays Unbeaten, 12-7 Over UMBC

UNC Stays Unbeaten, 12-7 Over UMBC

UNC Stays Unbeaten, 12-7 Over UMBC

UNC Stays Unbeaten, 12-7 Over UMBC

CATONSVILLE, MD. - Senior midfielder Sean DeLaney's career-high five points led fourth-ranked North Carolina's offense and redshirt junior goalkeeper Chris Madalon matched his career high for saves with 13 to lead the defense as the Tar Heels defeated No. 18 UMBC 12-7 in men's lacrosse action before a crowd of 1,365 at UMBC Stadium. The Tar Heels remain unbeaten on the season at 5-0 heading into a nationally-televised game at Duke (2-2) Wednesday at 7 p.m. at Koskinen Stadium in Durham N.C.

Saturday was about shooting accuracy on offense for UNC as the Tar Heels tallied 12 goals on 33 shots, including 12 on their 18 shots on goal. UNC went four for five on the extra-man against the Retrievers (1-2) and won the ground ball battle 33-27 and the face-off war 13-9. UNC's defense held its fifth straight foe to single digits in goals although the Retrievers were able to score seven, the most against Carolina this season. Meanwhile, the Tar Heels have now scored in double digits for the 12th time in the last 13 games.

DeLaney equaled his career high for goals in a game with four, matching the total he had against Lehigh on February 28, 2009. His points were a career high. He previously had four points on six occasions. Junior attackman Billy Bitter had two goals and two assists and sophomore attackman Thomas Wood had two goals, the fifth straight game in which he has had at least two tallies, while also adding an assist. Redshirt senior attackman Gavin Petracca had three assists, giving him eight in the past two games, while senior midfielder Cryder DiPietro tied his career high for goals in a game with two. Senior defenseman Sean Jackson scored the first goal of his career for the Tar Heels and junior midfielder Michael Burns had the other UNC goal.

UMBC was led by a four-point performance by Jamie Kimbles, who had three goals and an assist. All seven UMBC goals came from three players as Bobby Stockton had two, to go with an assist, and Matt Latham also had a pair. Kyle Wimer had three assists for the Retrievers.

The play between the pipes was a crucial factor in the game as the Tar Heels scored a decisive win despite being outshot 34-33. UNC also had to overcome 20 turnovers, including 15 unforced ones, and a season-high seven failed clears. Chris Madalon had a lot to do with the success of the defense, as he equaled the career-high 13 saves he had against Navy on February 25 and allowed only seven goals. Carolina had eight caused turnovers, led by senior defenseman Michael Jarvis who had three. Sophomore defenseman Charlie McComas led the Heels in ground balls with five to go along with two caused turnovers. Adam Cohen went all the way in goal for UMBC, making six saves and scooping up two ground balls.

Carolina won for the second straight time at UMBC Stadium and has now won four in a row in the series to go to 19-6 overall. The game was a far cry, however, from the offensive shootout the two teams staged in the first round of the 2009 NCAA Tournament when the Tar Heels outlasted the Retrievers 15-13 at Fetzer Field on May 9, 2009.

North Carolina got off to a great start, jumping to a 4-0 lead before UMBC crept back in the game gradually to cut the Tar Heel lead to 7-5 at halftime. UNC led by two at the half despite being outshot by the Retrievers 21-14 in the first 30 minutes.

Less than a minute into the game, Cruder DiPietro's shot was saved by Cohen but Billy Bitter scooped up the ground ball and scored on the rebound at 14:07 to make it 1-0. After the Tar Heels killed off a UMBC extra-man opportunity in the third minute of the game, Madalon made his first save of the game at 10:49, leading to a transition goal for the Heels. Sean Jackson got the goal, his career first, on an alley-oop after taking a pass from Bitter at the 10:26 mark.

UMBC won the ensuing face-off but the Tar Heels got the ball back on a turnover. Bitter recorded his second straight assist, feeding Thomas Wood for his 10th goal of the season at 10:01 to make it 3-0 and forcing a UMBC timeout. The Retrievers got their second EMO of the period after a slashing call on Wood at 9:38 but UMBC turned the ball over before getting off a shot. UNC cleared the ball and scored its fourth straight goal on the subsequent possession. It was the first of four goals for Sean DeLaney with Gavin Petracca providing the assists.

UMBC scored on the next possession as Bobby Stockton scored his seventh goal of the year assisted by Kyle Wimer at 5:59, making it 4-1. Carolina had to kill off another EMO as Michael Jarvis was flagged for an illegal body check with three minutes left in the quarter. Madalon came up big on the EMO, making saves on Rob Grimm at 2:39 and on Bobby Stockton at 2:25.

Carolina's Jimmy Dunster hit the pipe on the ensuing possession and, after a turnover by Bitter, UNC was called for its fourth penalty of the first quarter with DiPietro whistled for unnecessary roughness at 1:06. UMBC cashed in this time, scoring on the EMO with 43 seconds left as Kimbles scored the first of his three goals, assisted by Wimer.

Both teams started the second quarter a man down after offsetting unnecessary roughness penalties to end the first quarter. Fifty-eight seconds into the stanza, UNC's Ryan Flanagan was issued an offside penalty but Carolina's penalty killers excelled again, holding the Retrievers without a shot on the opportunity. Carolina then got its first EMO of the match after a pushing penalty on Matt Kresse at 11:33. UNC converted quickly with DeLaney getting his second goal of the match off an assist by Thomas Wood 12 seconds into the penalty. UMBC got the goal right back, however, as Latham scored off an assist by Stockton 50 seconds after the Tar Heel goal.

The offensive fireworks settled down for over six minutes before Cryder DiPietro scored with 4:23 left in the half to make it 6-3. DiPietro took the ball down the right alley and sent a high bouncing shot past Cohen for the goal. UMBC came back with a goal by Stockton, assisted by Grimm, at 2:57. Madalon made a save on a shot by Stockton at 3:06 but Grimm won the ground ball and fed Stockton who scored on an underhanded shot. Just six seconds later, UNC regained a three-goal lead as Michael Burns won the face-off for UNC and came right down and finished past Cohen for a 7-4 lead. UNC's penalty woes continued as Jimmy Dunster was called for pushing 14 seconds later but the Retrievers were unable to score while UNC was a man down. Carolina was not so fortunate a minute later as a cross checking foul against Ryan Flanagan at 1:38 was converted into an EMO goal by the Retrievers at 1:17 with Kimbles scoring from Wimer.

The half ended 7-5 for UNC and with the Tar Heels a man up after a slashing penalty on Mike Camardo with four seconds left in the half. Carolina outshot the Retrievers 12-5 in the third quarter and outscored them 3-1 to build a four-goal lead by the end of the quarter. Thomas Wood hit the post six seconds into the period and Wood also had a shot saved by Cohen at 14:19 as the Retrievers successfully killed off the EMO.

A couple of minutes later UNC made it an 8-5 game on DiPietro's second goal of the contest as the senior dodged down the side for an unassisted goal. After saves by Madalon on shots by Chris Jones and Stockton, the Tar Heels benefitted from a slashing penalty on Wimer with 9:07 left in the period. Wood scored his second of the game on the EMO, sneaking on in on the near side past Cohen at 8:39. DeLaney assisted on the goal and UNC's lead grew to 9-5.

UMBC scored the next goal as Latham took an assist from Kimbles at tallied at the 4:57 make it 9-6. Carolina answered that goal at 1:29 of the period as DeLaney scored man-up from Petracca after a delay of game penalty on Kimbles.

Carolina won the opening face-off of the fourth quarter and 12 seconds into the period Rob Grimm was set off for a minute for an illegal body check. UNC converted the EMO with Bitter scoring his second goal of the game, off an assist by Petracca, at the 14:28 mark. UMBC scored its last goal of the game at 11:17 as Kimbles got his hat trick, scoring unassisted. UNC finished off the scoring after a timeout by the Tar Heels at 4:45. Jimmy Dunster was double-teamed on the restart but split his defenders and fed DeLaney for a dunk on the crease at the 4:33 mark. It gave DeLaney his second four-goal game of his career. Madalon made two more saves down the stretch, stopping Grimm at 3:35 and Wimer at 3:01 before the Tar Heels cleared the ball at 2:50 and then ran out the rest of the clock, making no effort to add to their lead.

UNC is now 5-0 overall, 0-0 in the ACC. Carolina will play its ACC opener Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Durham against Duke at Koskinen Stadium in a game to be nationally televised by ESPNU. The Blue Devils are 2-2 overall and 0-1 in the ACC after losing to Maryland 11-10 Saturday in overtime in Baltimore, Md. The Tar Heels will be looking to end an 11-game losing streak to the Blue Devils dating back to a 10-9 overtime win by Carolina at Koskinen Stadium on March 20, 2004. Carolina will also be seeking an end to a 15-game ACC regular-season losing streak dating back to an 11-9 win over Virginia on April 10, 2004. The match will be worth one point in the 2009-10 Carlyle Cup standings, the all-sports trophy that the two teams compete for annually based on competition in 24 sports. UNC leads the current Cup standings 10 points to 5.5 points. UNC has won the Carlyle Cup five times, Duke three times and there has been one tie since its inaugural season of 2000-01.

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