Lady Vols fall to North Carolina

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Two late goals by Tennessee was not enough, as North Carolina's three goals in each half moved it into the regional finals of the 2006 NCAA Division I Women's Soccer Tournament with a 6-2 victory on Saturday night at Fetzer Field. UNC moves to 24-1 on the season, while the Lady Vols end the campaign with a 12-7-4 mark.

Carolina got its first goal in the 14th minute after UT senior defender Jenny Jeffers stopped an Ali Hawkins header off a corner kick. The Tar Heels then played the ball back across the box, where Tobin Heath found Hawkins again for another header that got past UT sophomore goalkeeper Jaimel Johnson.

The second came five minutes later, when UNC freshman forward Whitney Engen got a through ball from senior Heather O'Reilly and pushed the shot past Johnson for the score. Yael Averbuch added her 16th goal of the year in the 32nd minute when her 22-yard blast deflected off Johnson's hands and over the goal line.

Tennessee had opportunities in the first, as junior forward Emily Redberg had a shot inside the six-yard box cleared by UNC defender Ariel Harris after UNC starting goalkeeper Anna Rodenbough was drawn out to try to clear a UT cross.

With the seconds ticking down in the first half, redshirt freshman forward Mick Imgram tried to beat Rodenbough with a shot from inside the box, but her try missed right.

After the half, North Carolina was held at bay for 11 minutes before Elizabeth Guess finished off the passes from Engen and Heath. In the 61st, senior Heather O'Reilly fired from 11 yards out past Johnson for the Tar Heels' fifth goal of the night. Freshman Ashley Moore ended their scoring in the 77th when her shot got over Johnson's hand and just under the crossbar for her first career goal.

The Lady Vols did not give up, scoring two goals in the final six minutes of the game. At 84:28, senior All-American midfielder Ali Christoph put a shot past Ashlyn Harris for her 20th career goal, which stands eighth on UT's all-time list.

Redberg made the pro-North Carolina crowd of 2,145 a little uneasy when she took the passes from Imgram and sophomore forward Kylee Rossi and put the shot from eight yards out into the net to put UT down, 6-2. The Orange and White continued to fight after that, but Carolina would keep the Lady Vols from scoring again.

"I give a ton of credit to Anson (Dorrance) and his team," said UT head coach Angela Kelly. "They are tremendous. You don't just get the term dynasty just because people want to call you that. He deserves all the credit and the accolades himself and this program achieve. They are extremely talented. They punish you for your mistakes.

"It's always a great parameter to test yourself and your team to play North Carolina , because they are the standard. I've known that, and it's a part of the beast that I took a little part in creating. North Carolina is the best program out there, and if I'm not playing them, I want them to win. I would be shocked if they don't win the national championship this year."

In the match, North Carolina out-shot Tennessee, 16-9, but UT held a 5-4 advantage in corner kicks. The Big Orange became just the second team all year to tally two goals against the Tar Heels, but UT's record falls to 0-8-1 all-time against the 17-time national champions. For the third time in six NCAA appearances, the Lady Vols had their season ended at Fetzer Field, the last two at the hands of the home standing Tar Heels.


Shots: North Carolina 16, Tennessee 9.

Corner Kicks: Tennessee 5, North Carolina 4.

Goalkeeper Stats: Jaimel Johnson (UT) 3 saves, 6 goals, 90:00; Anna Rodenbough (UNC), 0 saves, 0 goals, 56:03; Ashlyn Harris (UNC), 2 saves, 2 goals, 33:57.

Fouls: North Carolina 9, Tennessee 7.

Offsides: North Carolina 4, Tennessee 4.

Starting Lineups

Tennessee: Jaimel Johnson (GK), Jenny Jeffers (D), Kristen Doukakis (M), Emily Redberg (F), Kylee Rossi (F), Mick Imgram (F), Sarah Van Sickle (D), Erica Griffin (D), Leslie Vineyard (M), Jordan Falcusan (D), Ali Christoph (M).

North Carolina: Anna Rodenbough (GK), Whitney Engin (F), Ariel Harris (D), Robyn Gayle (D), Yael Averbuch (M), Heather O'Reilly (F), Nikki Washington (M), Elizabeth Guess (F), Kristi Eveland (D), Ali Hawkins (M), Tobin Heath (M).

Reserves: Melissa Hayes, Jaime Gilbert, Katie Brooks, Ashlyn Harris, Julie Yates, Casey Nogueira, Jessica Maxwell, Mandy Moraca, Ashley Moore, Sterling Smith.


Tennessee: Mick Imgram 3, Emily Redberg 3, Ali Christoph 2, Sarah Van Sickle 1.

North Carolina: Yael Averbuch 4, Whitney Engen 3, Ali Hawkins 3, Heather O'Reilly 2, Elizabeth Guess 2, Ashley Moore 2.

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