#2 Northwestern and #3 UNC Meet in NCAA Semifinals

Northwestern returns to the national semifinal for the sixth-straight season, heading to Johnny Unitas Stadium in Towson, Md., for a rematch with third-ranked North Carolina Friday, May 28, at 8:00 p.m. ET.

Scouting the Tar Heels

Third-ranked North Carolina is making its second consecutive appearance in the national semifinal, heading to Towson with a 17-2 record on the year and coming off a 17-7 victory over sixth-seeded Virginia in the quarterfinals. The Tar Heels, who average just shy of 15 goals per game, have put together a balanced attack with six different players notching at least 40 points, led by junior Corey Donohoe's 52 goals and 73 points.

Sophomore Becky Lynch has recorded 40 goals while leading North Carolina in both assists (25) and ground balls (23), complimented by 39 goals from senior Kristen Taylor and 32 off the sticks of both sophomore Laura Zimmerman and senior Tewaaraton Award finalist Jenn Russell. Senior Kristen Carr leads the Tar Heels with 63 draws on the year with junior Mia Hurrin notching 21 caused turnovers.

North Carolina leads the nation in team defense, highlighted by senior goalkeeper Logan Ripley's nation-best 6.60 goals against average, complimented by 122 saves and a .521 save percentage. Head coach Jenny Levy is in her 15th season in Chapel Hill, posting a career 194-81 (.705) record.

Series Information

Northwestern and North Carolina meet for the ninth time Friday night in Towson with the Wildcats holding a 6-2 lead in the all-time series. The Tar Heels, however, had the upper hand earlier this year in Evanston, defeating the 'Cats 18-16 in a Lakeside Field shoot out on April 18, handing Northwestern its only loss of the season. Friday marks the third time the two schools will meet in the NCAA tournament with Northwestern earning a 17-6 decision in the 2006 quarterfinals and a 21-7 victory in last year's championship game.

Northwestern Surpasses Maryland with 22nd Consecutive NCAA Victory

With the 18-8 victory over Duke in the quarterfinals Saturday, Northwestern solidified its place in history. The win was the 22nd-consecutive in the NCAA tournament, which surpasses Maryland's previous record of 21 set from 1995 through 2002. Head coach Kelly Amonte Hiller, who played at Maryland from 1993-96, is 23-1 in her career in the postseason as her .958 winning percentage is tops in the sport's history.

Dowd Becomes NCAA's All-Time Leading Tournament Goal Scorer

Katrina Dowd has earned the reputation as "Miss May," and with good reason. With her three goals against Duke in the quarterfinals, the 2009 NCAA Championship MVP has now registered 42 career goals in the NCAA tournament, surpassing former teammate Hilary Bowen's 40 to become the NCAA tournament's most prolific goal scorer. Dowd, who set the single-tournament mark with 22 goals in 2009, heads the list with three of her former teammates on her heels. Her four point performance against the Blue Devils also upped her NCAA career point total to 49, which is tied for fourth all-time with a pair of former Tewaaraton winners in Kristen Kjellman and Amy Appelt.

Wildcats in the NCAA Tournament

May has proven to be the month where Northwestern feels the most at home as the Wildcats have thrived in the NCAA tournament under head coach Kelly Amonte Hiller. Since the program was reinstated in 2002, Northwestern has posted a 23-1 record under Amonte Hiller in the tournament, and are currently riding an NCAA-record 22-game tournament winning streak. Including the early days of Northwestern lacrosse, the Wildcats are making their 12th postseason appearance with an overall record of 24-6, as their .800 tournament winning percentage is tops all-time.

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2010-05-27



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