CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- No. 9 national seed North Carolina (15-3-2) will open its 2012 NCAA Tournament on Sunday when the Tar Heels welcome in UMBC (11-4-6) for a 5 p.m. contest at Fetzer Field.
The 2012 NCAA Tournament marks the 20th appearance for the Tar Heels who own a 28-16-5 record all-time in tournament play.
Sunday's meeting against UMBC will be the first between the two sides after the Retrievers knocked off Old Dominion 4-2 in a penalty shootout Thursday in Norfolk, Va. Old Dominion and UMBC battled to a scoreless draw after 110 minutes before UMBC emerged victorious.
The America East Champion comes to Chapel Hill on an eight-match unbeaten streak as the Retrievers won the final five games of the regular season and the America East Tournament opener. UMBC battled New Hampshire to a 0-0 draw before winning 4-2 in a shootout to claim the automatic bid.
The Tar Heels and Retrievers have a pair of common opponents this season as both teams faced Boston University and Maryland. Both teams downed Boston University at home and both sides suffered road losses to the Terps.
Carolina enters Sunday's match with the longest active home unbeaten streak in the country at 38 consecutive matches. A result Sunday would move Carolina into a tie with Tulsa (1988-92) for the second longest home unbeaten streak in NCAA history.
The Tar Heels have also been successful at home in the NCAA Tournament with a 20-8-3 mark as the host, including a 12-match home unbeaten streak in the NCAA Tournament. The last loss suffered by the Tar Heels at home in tournament action came against Old Dominion in the 2006 second round.
Carolina has advanced beyond the second round in five of its last six appearances and has advanced the past four years en route to the College Cup.
The winner of Sunday's match will face either No. 8 seed Saint Louis or Fairleigh Dickinson in the NCAA Third Round.
Sunday's match will be streamed live on GoHeels.com.