CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - For the second year in a row, North Carolina has earned the top seed in the NCAA Division I Field Hockey Tournament. The Tar Heels, 20-1 overall and ranked No. 1 in the nation, will open play at home on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. against Stanford.
Michigan and Old Dominion will meet in the other first-round game in Chapel Hill, on Saturday at 2 p.m. The winners play Sunday at 2 p.m. for a spot in the national semifinal the following Friday in Norfolk, Va.
"As always, we're thrilled to be in the NCAA Tournament field and especially excited to be hosting," said UNC coach Karen Shelton, who has led her program to its 29th NCAA tournament berth in her 32nd season at UNC. "Winning the ACC Tournament on our home field last Sunday was really special and now we're hoping to keep that momentum rolling in the NCAA Tournament.
"We prepare all year long for the postseason. Our players have worked hard, as has our staff. We feel like we've improved as the season has gone on, and we hope we'll continue to do that. Winning a championship last weekend was great, but the next game is always the one we're focused on. The players had a couple of days off and now we're ready to get back on the field and prepare for Stanford."
Saturday's game will be the second meeting this season between UNC and Stanford. The Cardinal visited Henry Stadium on Sept. 23 for a game the Tar Heels won 6-2.
Carolina also has played the other two teams headed for Chapel Hill. UNC beat Michigan 5-1 in Winston-Salem, N.C., on Aug. 25 and has faced ODU twice, winning 3-2 in Chapel Hill on Sept. 14 and 3-1 in Norfolk on Oct. 26.
Carolina won the program's 18th ACC Championship last Sunday on its home field, beating Maryland 4-2 in the final. Now the Tar Heels will shoot for their seventh NCAA title. They have played in the NCAA Championship game in four of the last five years, winning titles in 2007 and 2009 and finishing as the runner-up to Maryland in overtime in 2010 and 2011.
Tickets for the games are $5 for adults and $3 for students and will be available at the Henry Stadium entrance on Saturday and Sunday.