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Mikey Lopez was the difference Tuesday night.
Mikey Lopez was the difference Tuesday night.
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Lopez Propels UNC To Overtime Win
Release: 09/25/2012

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Sophomore Mikey Lopez scored in the 103rd minute to give No. 6 North Carolina (6-1-1) a 1-0 win over Wofford (5-4-0) Tuesday night at Fetzer Field.

Lopez and the Tar Heels played the final 87 minutes a man down as junior Andy Craven was issued a red card in the 16th minute of play.

Carolina earned a free kick near the touch line and as Martin Murphy was preparing to send a cross in, Craven made a run toward goal. Craven caught Wofford's Carlos Dominguez Gonzalez with an inadvertent elbow as he made his run and was immediately shown the red card leading to his ejection.

The Tar Heels bounced back from the adversity and controlled possession throughout the rest of the first half. Carolina nearly struck in the 20th minute when Murphy took a free kick from 20 yards out in front of goal, but Wofford's Andrew Drennan was able to punch the ball away.

The Terriers would counter attack after Murphy's shot and force goalkeeper Scott Goodwin into a save in what would end up being the final shot of the first half.

The Tar Heels continued to control the pace of play in the second half and Verneri Valimaa nearly gave Carolina a 1-0 lead in the 69th minute. Valimaa collected a pass on the left side of the box and fired a shot into Wofford's Andrew Drennan's chest from a tight angle.


Freshman Raby George was inches away from the game winner in the 78th minute when a corner kick bounced off of several people in the box before the freshman turned and fired. George's shot sailed over the crossbar in what would be Carolina's final shot of regulation.

The first overtime session saw the Tar Heels continue to press forward despite being a man down. Lopez fired a shot from the top of the box that was deflected and skated just past the post and out for a corner kick. 

The Terriers best chance of the night came in the first extra period when Alex Hutchins connected on a header off of a cross. Hutchins sent the effort rolling wide of the target and out of bounds to keep the match scoreless.

Lopez fired a shot from the corner of the 18-yard box that Drennan was able to corral in the 101st minute before Cameron Brown turned in a stellar individual play.

Brown attacked the Terrier defense and was able to get a defender to fall down before dragging the ball to his right foot. Brown sent a bending effort from 23 yards out that Drennan was able to get in front of but not hang on to.

Lopez came charging into the box in search of the rebound and was able to chip it past the goalkeeper and into the back of the net to give the Tar Heels a 1-0 win.

The victory moves Carolina to 6-1-1 on the year and improves its NCAA-leading home unbeaten streak to 32 matches.

The Tar Heels also notched their sixth shutout of the year and third in as many contests. Carolina has not surrendered a goal since the first half of the James Madison game, a span of more than 305 minutes.

Up next for the Tar Heels is a trip to Durham to take on rival Duke Friday night at 7 p.m. The match will be carried live on the ACC Digital Network on YouTube.


UNC North Carolina Men's Soccer


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