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North Carolina Athletics | October 3, 2014

No. 8 North Carolina steals a win against No. 5 Virginia Tech

  Sarah Ashley Firstenberg scored her first career goal as North Carolina defeated Virginia Tech 3-2 Friday.

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --  No. 8 North Carolina scored the opening three goals of the match and withstood a furious rally by No. 5 Virginia Tech to prevail 3-2 in women's soccer action Friday afternoon at Fetzer Field.

UNC won its sixth match in a row and improved to 7-2-1 on the season. The Tar Heels also kept their ACC record perfect at 4-0. Virginia Tech, which opened its campaign with 10 consecutive wins, has now dropped two of its past three matches and is now 11-2 on the season and 2-2 in the ACC.

UNC built a 2-0 halftime lead on goals by Megan Buckingham and Sarah Ashley Firstenberg and then made it 3-0 in the third minute of the second half on a goal by Joanna Boyles.

Virginia Tech answered UNC's third goal just 1:05 later on an unassisted goal by Candace Cephers. That goal switched the momentum to the Hokies, who scored less than 10 minutes later to cut the lead to 3-2.

The Hokies went on to outshoot the Tar Heels 10-3 overall in the second half but UNC's defense held strong. After a foul by the Tar Heels, Jordan Coburn sent a shot from 35 yards out that Harris tipped over the bar at the 66:42 mark. UNC's defense then limited Virginia Tech to a single shot in the final 23:18 to earn the result.

Other than a tie at defending national champion UCLA, Carolina has played nothing but one-goal games this year and has persevered to post a 7-2 record in those games.

Virginia Tech would make things interesting for the Tar Heels after scoring two goals in the second half but it produced only one more shot on goal.

Virginia Tech ended the match with a 14-12 edge in shots while UNC won seven corner kicks in comparison to six for the Hokies. Caroline Kelly finished with three saves for the Hokies. Bryane Heaberlin played the first half for the Tar Heels in goal and made two saves and improved to 4-1 in goalie decisions this year. Lindsey Harris made three second half saves for Carolina.

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