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Carolina advanced to its 26th Women's College Cup with a 2-1 win over BYU.
Carolina advanced to its 26th Women's College Cup with a 2-1 win over BYU.
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Best Games Of 2012-13: No. 6
Release: 07/26/2013

Continuing today with entry No. 6, GoHeels.com is counting down the top 25 games of 2012-13 until we get to No. 1. To catch up on the previous great moments of the Tar Heel year, click here for entries 7-25.

No. 6: Carolina 2, BYU 1 (2OT) - Women's Soccer, Nov. 23, 2012

Here is a complete listing of the national quarterfinal games the North Carolina women's soccer team has played away from Chapel Hill:

• at BYU, 2012

Twenty-six times from 1982 to 2009 UNC had played for a chance to advance to the Women's College Cup, and 26 times that game was played at Fetzer Field. But in 2012, for the first time in program history, the Tar Heels packed their bags and headed west to Provo, Utah, to face third-ranked and 20-1-2 BYU.

The Cougars were in the midst of perhaps the greatest season in school history, and fans in Utah had been flocking to South Field. The game was a sellout, and it capped a year in which more fans had attended games at BYU than any other home field in the country.

Both teams advanced to the quarters via penalties, with BYU outlasting Marquette and UNC eliminating Baylor, but the hosts were unbeaten since August and had conceded just six goals in 14 home contests for the year. Despite the historical differences, the Cougars were the favorite.

So naturally, the match started perfectly for the Tar Heels. 

Crystal Dunn's fourth-minute strike stunned the overflow crowd of 4,291, and for a moment it seemed like Carolina would march right over BYU and into the College Cup.

But the stellar play of Cougar goalie Erica Owens and a 27th-minute penalty that was converted by Rachel Manning meant the two teams were even at 1 after one half of play. UNC outshot BYU 23-8, including a 20-6 advantage in regulation, but the Tar Heels were unable to solve Owens after the early Dunn tally.

Both teams had stretches of dominance in the second half, but neither could find a way through. BYU had three shots and two corners in the first four minutes of the period, but an Adalaide Gay kick save on a 1v1 with Cloee Colohan preserved the tie. The rest of the half would belong to Carolina, but Owens and the woodwork conspired to keep the game level through 90 minutes.

In the first period of sudden-death extra time, Brooke Elby made an individual defensive play for the ages to deny BYU. From Dave Lohse's game recap:

"Five minutes into the first extra period, the Tar Heels had a corner kick but the ball was played out by BYU and the Cougars quickly had numbers on the other end. With two BYU players bearing down on Gay, she did the only thing she could do and came out of her box to cut down the angle. Lindsi Cutshall was able to evade Gay, dribbling around her with a chance to end the game into an empty net. But Cutshall was slowed down just enough that Brooke Elby was able to track back and make a remarkable defender save at 95:07, clearing a sure goal over the end line for a corner kick. On the ensuing corner kick, Rachel Manning had a header off a corner kick by Jessica Ringwood that again looked headed for the back of the goal. This time it was Dunn, the ACC Defensive Player of the Year, who headed the BYU attempt off the end line."

Finally, in the 107th minute as penalties seemed the only possible outcome, Carolina found the winner. An Alyssa Rich flick-on connected with Kealia Ohai, who sliced through the middle of the pitch to find Dunn. The eventual national player of the year made no mistake from 10 yards out, and a desperate lunge by a BYU defender could only help the ball into the back of the net. 

It was the fourth of what would eventually be five postseason goals for Dunn, who incredibly did not score a single goal in the regular season.

The win ended what was a storybook season for the Cougars, but it served as another improbable stepping stone toward the most unlikely of Carolina's 22 national titles.

Previous Entries
No. 7: Carolina 76, NC State 65 - Men's Basketball, Feb. 23, 2013
No. 8: Carolina 64, Miami 62 - Women's Basketball, Jan. 27, 2013
No. 9: Carolina 6, Syracuse 1 - Field Hockey, Nov. 16, 2012
No. 10: Carolina 1, Stanford 0 (OT) - Women's Soccer, Nov. 30, 2012
No. 11: Carolina 3, Florida State 1 - Volleyball, Nov. 3, 2012
No. 12: Carolina 3, Wisconsin 2 (8 inn.) - Softball, May 16, 2013
No. 13: Carolina 2, Duke 1 (OT) - Men's Soccer, Sept. 28, 2012
No. 14: Carolina 79, Maryland 76 - Men's Basketball, March 16, 2013
No. 15: Carolina 10, Maryland 8 - Men's Lacrosse, March 23, 2013
No. 16: Carolina 72, Maryland 65 - Women's Basketball, March 9, 2013
No. 17: Carolina 4, Maryland 3 (OT) - Field Hockey, Oct. 20, 2012
No. 18: Carolina 11, Northwestern 8 - Women's Lacrosse, Feb. 22, 2013
No. 19: Carolina 4, USC 3 - Women's Tennis, Feb. 9, 2013
No. 20: Carolina 3, California 1 - Volleyball, Nov. 29, 2012
No. 21: Carolina 11, Johns Hopkins 10 (OT), Men's Lacrosse, March 30, 2013
No. 22: Carolina 1, Fairleigh Dickinson 0 (OT) - Men's Soccer, Nov. 25, 2012
No. 23: Peacock Smashes NCAA Record - Swimming and Diving, Dec. 2, 2012
No. 24: UNC's Big Day at ACCs - Track and Field, April 19, 2013
No. 25: Carolina 30, NC State 6 - Wrestling, Feb. 1, 2013


UNC North Carolina Women's Soccer


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