Wake Forest Falls 3-2 to No. 2 UNC in Chapel Hill
Sept. 29, 2012
By Currie McFayden, Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@SIDeacons)
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - Taylor Rhea and Jess McFadyen each scored for No. 15 Wake Forest, but the Deacs could not overcome a 3-1 halftime deficit and fell to No. 2 North Carolina 3-2 in Chapel Hill on Saturday afternoon.
Wake Forest dropped to 4-6 overall and 1-2 in ACC play, while the Tar Heels improved to 11-1 and 2-0 in the conference.
North Carolina struck early with a goal from Charlotte Craddock, who scored both goals for the Tar Heels in the Sept. 16 meeting between the two teams. Katie Ardrey and Emily Wold picked up assists on the goal, which came off a penalty corner.
Rhea notched her team-leading sixth goal of the season at the 25:49 mark to level the score at 1-1. Molly Murphy fired a shot on goal following McFadyen's penalty corner, and Rhea collected the rebound from Sassi Ammer's save and put it into the back of the cage. The junior has now scored in five of Wake's last six games and is tied for the team lead in points with 12.
The Tar Heels roared back in the final five minutes of the half, however. Ardrey had an unassisted goal in the 31st minute to give North Carolina a 2-1 lead, and Emma Bozek added the insurance goal in the 33rd minute with an assist from Craddock to make the score 3-1 heading into the halftime break.
Kaitlyn Ruhf and the Deacon defense buckled down in the second half, shutting down the North Carolina attack at every turn. Ruhf made six of her 10 saves in the second half and Wake Forest put away five Tar Heel penalty corners to hold UNC without a score.
McFadyen cut into North Carolina's lead at the 41:00 mark to make it 3-2. Murphy launched a shot after Anna Kozniuk stopped the insertion, but Ammer made the save on the play. She could not bring the ball under control, though, allowing McFadyen to grab the rebound and score her fifth goal of the season.
The Demon Deacons could not muster the equalizer late in the half despite several good offensive chances. North Carolina's attack largely forced the Deacs into defensive positions and sealed the 3-2 victory.
The Heels held advantages in shots (23-10), shots on goal (14-7) and penalty corners (8-5). Ruhf made a season-high 11 saves and increased her save percentage for the season to .714, nearly five percent higher than her mark in that category in 2011.
Wake Forest will return to action next Wednesday, Oct. 3, as the Deacs take on Ohio (5-5, 0-1 MAC) in a non-conference battle at Kentner Stadium. Game time is currently scheduled for 5:00 p.m.