Nov. 7, 2009

Courtesy of North Carolina

CLEMSON, S.C. - Sophomore forward Billy Schuler netted the game-winner in the 74th minute and added an assist just six minutes later to lift No. 2 North Carolina past Clemson, 3-1, and to a share of the Atlantic Coast Conference regular season title Friday at Riggs Field. The Tar Heels wrap up the regular season with a 13-2-2 overall mark and a 5-2-1 conference record to finish at the top of the league table for the first time since 2000.

With 16 points in ACC action, Carolina finishes atop the ACC standings with Wake Forest. The 2009 ACC Men's Soccer Championship opens Tuesday at Cary's WakeMed Soccer Park, and the Tar Heels will take the pitch Wednesday in a quarterfinal match up. The official seeding and schedule will be announced Monday by the league office.

Schuler netted his third goal this week, and senior defender Jordan Graye and freshman midfielder Martin Murphy each scored for Carolina, which extended its unbeaten streak to four matches.

Senior goalkeeper Brooks Haggerty went the distance in goal after missing the last three games and made one save.

After a scoreless first half, the Tar Heels and Tigers combined for four goals in just over 27 minutes after intermission. Clemson found the back of the net first when Riley Sumpter scored off an assist from Eric Cava in the 53rd minute to put UNC in a 1-0 deficit.

Carolina found the equalizer 12 minutes later when Graye, who now has two goals on the year, scored in the 65th minute off sophomore midfielder Kirk Urso's team-leading fourth assist.

Schuler, who also scored twice in Tuesday's 2-1 win at Elon, notched his sixth game-winning goal in the 74th minute with an unassisted strike. He leads the Tar Heels with eight goals and 20 points.

After netting the game-winner, Schuler set up UNC's final score of the night when he fed Martin Murphy for his second goal of the season in the 80th minute.

The Tar Heels controlled play for much of the night, finishing with an 18-8 edge on the shot chart and a 6-0 advantage on corners. Carolina put six shots on goal, and Clemson keeper Joseph Bendik made three saves.