CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Fourth-ranked North Carolina improved to 3-0 in the ACC for the first time in 23 years with a 17-15 win against second-ranked Syracuse before a sellout crowd of 6,004 at Fetzer Field on Saturday.
The win sent 11 Tar Heels seniors out on a winning note in their final regular-season appearance at Fetzer Field where the crowd was the largest since Carolina beat Johns Hopkins before 8,500 fans in April 1983. The Tar Heels are now 12-1 this season and 3-0 in the ACC. Syracuse is now 8-2 overall and 2-2 in the ACC. Carolina has started its ACC season with three consecutive wins for the first time since 1992.
Luke Goldstock led UNC with four goals and one assist to overcome a five-goal, one-assist effort by Syracuse’s Dylan Donahue. Chad Tutton had three goals and an assist for UNC while Jimmy Bitter had two goals and two assists. Joey Sankey and Shane Simpson each added two goals and an assist for the Heels while Peyton Klawinski added two goals.
With his three points, Sankey became the all-time leading scorer in UNC history. His goal with 9:17 left gave the Tar Heels a 17-11 lead and in the process he recorded his 214th career point. He broke the previous school record of 213 set by Marcus Holman from 2010-13.
After Sankey’s goal, Syracuse made a furious rally, cutting the Tar Heels lead to 17-15 with less than two minutes to play on a goal by Tom Grimm, assisted by Dylan Donahue. The Orange had a man-up situation following Grimm’s goal, but Jake Bailey forced a turnover by Kevin Rice with 28 seconds to play, allowing Carolina to run out the clock.
Carolina had not hosted the Orange at Fetzer Field since March 6, 1993, when the Tar Heels prevailed 14-10. Syracuse had won the four meetings between the two teams since then but Saturday’s win improved Carolina to 6-1 all-time against the Orange in Chapel Hill.