Starting today and concluding on July 18, GoHeels.com will count down the top 25 games of the 2013-14 academic year.
No. 25: Carolina 12, Virginia Tech 8 - Softball, March 2, 2014
Carolina softball got off to a hot start to conference play thanks in large part to a stirring comeback win at Virginia Tech in the rubber game of the year's first ACC series. The Tar Heels trailed 7-2 after five innings in Blacksburg before erupting for eight runs in the sixth and two more in the seventh to win 12-8 and clinch their sixth straight series win against the Hokies. Kati Causey, Kendra Lynch and Darby Rosen all homered for Carolina, which ranked 13th nationally in home runs per game in 2014.
The Carolina men's swimming and diving team finished its home schedule with a bang in 2014, as the Tar Heels won a pair of tight dual meets with ranked rivals Virginia and NC State. In the 154-145 win over Virginia on Jan. 25, the Wahoos led comfortably before Carolina won the final four events - including a winner-take-all 400 free relay. The Tar Heels then edged the Wolfpack on Senior Night on Jan. 31, with senior Alex Gianino picking up key wins in the 200-yard breaststroke and the 200-yard individual medley.
No. 23: Carolina Men, Annie LeHardy Shine At XC Nationals - Cross Country, Nov. 23, 2013
No one on the Carolina men's cross country team had been born the last time a Tar Heel squad reached the heights of the 2013 unit. In fact, Carolina hadn't sent a men's team to cross country nationals since the 1991. But Mark VanAlstyne's group placed three runners in the top 100 to finish 17th overall, UNC's best finish since a fifth-place showing in 1985. Racing as an individual, junior Annie LeHardy earned All-America honors for the first time in her career with a 25th-place finish.
No. 22: Carolina 93, Louisville 84 - Men's Basketball, Nov. 24, 2013
The 2013-14 Carolina men's basketball season featured an uneven start that saw the Tar Heels fail to impress in home wins over Oakland and Holy Cross before falling on a last-second 3 to Belmont on Nov. 17. UNC then traveled to Uncasville, Connecticut, for the final two rounds of Hall of Fame Tipoff Tournament. After a win over a talented Richmond squad, the Tar Heels scored their first of several signature non-conference wins with a 93-84 upset of defending NCAA champion Louisville. The win over the Cardinals was also perhaps the first sign that Marcus Paige would become one of the dominant players in the ACC, as the sophomore guard poured in a team-high 32 points in an MVP performance.
No. 21: Carolina 3, Illinois 0 - Volleyball, Sept. 20, 2013
The ACC-Big Ten Challenge that brought Illinois and Indiana to Carmichael Arena was supposed to be a measuring stick for the talented Tar Heel volleyball team. In turned into a statement of intent for the Tar Heels, who blasted No. 16 Illinois 25-18, 25-15, 25-17 in front of over 2,000 fans to improve to 10-0 for the first time in program history. Graduate student Jovana Bjelica paced the UNC attack with kills and senior Ece Taner led the defense with 20 digs. Carolina would stretch its record to 15-0 to start the year before suffering its first loss.