Deacs Clip No. 17 Eagles 3-1 to Reach ACC Semifinals
Nov. 1, 2012
By Currie McFayden, Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@SIDeacons)
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - Jillian Anzalone, Jess Newak and Madi Julius all scored on Thursday afternoon to help Wake Forest defeat Boston College 3-1 in the opener of the 2012 ACC Field Hockey Championship at Francis E. Henry Stadium in Chapel Hill, N.C.
The Deacs have now won at least one game in every ACC Tournament dating back to 2001, a streak of 12 consecutive years, and have defeated Boston College in the quarterfinals in each of the last five seasons.
The Eagles started out strong in the first half, controlling the pace of the game for much of the first 25 minutes. Crisp passing and several strong offensive plays kept the Deacon defense on its heels as Boston College racked up five shots over that time, including two that forced Kaitlyn Ruhf into action for saves.
Despite being forced into Boston College's gameplan, Wake Forest earned a penalty corner in the 28th minute. Just as she has done all season, Jess McFadyen inserted the ball into the circle with Newak acting as the stopper. The freshman brought the ball to a clean stop and Anzalone blasted a direct strike past Eagles goalkeeper Leah Settipane to put the Demon Deacons up 1-0.
Each team got off one more shot before the halftime break, but neither found their target and Wake entered the locker room with a one-goal advantage.
After establishing a lead late in the first half, the Deacs came out in control to begin the second period. They controlled the tempo in much the same way as Boston College had done in the first half, easily cutting off passes and keeping the ball in the hands of the offense. Krysta Wangerin and Kari Walkley each had chances on goal, but both shots went just wide of the cage.
Wake's breakthrough came in the 56th minute and was keyed by a fantastic run into the circle by Anna Kozniuk. The 2012 All-ACC honoree slid into the circle along the back line on the left side of the goal, drawing Settipane out of her central position. Kozniuk then tipped the ball over to Newak on the right post who buried her fifth goal of the season to put the Deacs up 2-0.
Just over two minutes later, though, the Eagles managed to cut into that lead. They earned a penalty corner which Emma Plasteras inserted to Jacqui Moorfield, who passed the ball to Katlyn Soucy on the right side of the cage. Soucy tipped it past Ruhf to make the score 2-1 with just over 10 minutes remaining.
Sensing the urgent need to find the equalizing goal, Boston College pulled Settipane in favor of an extra attacker, opting to leave an empty net instead. Unfortunately for the Eagles, the move backfired after less than a minute. Kozniuk played an excellent through ball and found Julius wide open behind the defense. She lost control momentarily in front of the cage, but Newak was there to pass the ball back to her for her first collegiate goal. It could not have come at a more opportune time for Wake Forest as it sealed the 3-1 victory.
Boston College led in nearly every statistical category, including shots (11-9), shots on goal (6-4) and penalty corners (6-1), but simply could not make the most of their opportunities due to a strong Wake Forest defense.
The Demon Deacons will now advance to play top-seeded and No. 1-ranked North Carolina in the semifinals on Friday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. Wake will be looking for its first win over the Tar Heels since 2008 and will be trying to reverse its recent trend of close games against North Carolina after falling by a single goal in each of the last five contests between the two.