No. 4 Syracuse Rallies Late to Edge No. 5 UNC and Advance

The Orange will be making the program's third appearance in the Final Four. Syracuse advanced to the national semifinals in 2008 and 2010.

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SYRACUSE, N.Y. Michelle Tumolo scored with five seconds remaining to cap a furious Syracuse rally in the final minutes and defeat North Carolina, 17-16, on Saturday afternoon in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Women's Lacrosse Tournament at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse.

The Tar Heels (15-4) led 16-14 after a goal by Laura Zimmerman with 3:04 left to play, only to see Syracuse (18-3) score three times in the final 2:24, including twice in the final 39 seconds, to take the victory.

Carolina's bid for a fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA semifinals fell short, despite the Tar Heels rallying from a 4-0 deficit in the first five minutes of the game.

"Congratulations to Syracuse," said UNC head coach Jenny Levy after the game. "That was a great game and definitely exciting for the fans. I'm proud of our team. We fought hard and did a lot of great things. We had a couple of turnovers in the last couple of minutes and a couple of calls that didn't go our way and hurt us. The bottom line is, you have to win the draw control an the ground balls to win the game and we didn't do very well with the ground balls at times.

"It was 16-14 and we got the next draw control but turned it over. There were a lot of woulda-coulda-shoulda moments that might have changed the outcome. Today's game easily could have been a national semifinal or final game. The quality of play was very high on both sides."

The Tar Heels were led by the duo of Zimmerman and Kara Cannizzaro, both of whom are Central New York natives. Zimmerman set a career high with six goals while also adding an assist to tie her career high of seven points in her final collegiate game. Cannizzaro tied her career high with five goals.

Carolina also got three goals from Abbey Friend and a goal, an assist and four draw controls from senior Becky Lynch. Brittney Coppa added a goal and Emily Garrity had an assist. Lauren Maksym played well in goal for Carolina, recording four first-half saves and 11 overall despite giving up a season-high 17 goals.

Syracuse got four goals and an assist from Tumolo and three goals and an assist from both Alyssa Murray and Katie Webster. Kailah Kempney had two goals and one assist, Devon Collins scored twice and Bridget Daley and Gabby Jaquith both had a goal and an assist. Sarah Holden added a goal for the Orange.

"I thought both teams played with a lot of heart and a lot of hustle," Canizzaro said. "It seemed like some of the bounces went right into their sticks late in the game. We could have taken care of business a little better early in the game instead of falling behind like we did. You can't let it come down to the last two minutes like we did."

"It was nice to come home but it would've been nicer to win," said Zimmerman. "In the second half, we came out a little slow. I thought we gained some momentum through the ground balls and draw controls. We were landing out shots pretty well during our run in the second half. I'm still a little bit in shock right now about my career being over now. It hasn't really sunk in yet. I had a great four years an wouldn't change it one bit."

Syracuse took a 4-0 lead in the first five minutes of action, striking first in the opening minute on an unassisted goal by Daley. Less than a minute later, Collins scored on a free position goal for the Orange to make it 2-0. Two minutes later at 26:52, Jaquith scored off an assist from Daley for a 3-0 Syracuse lead, forcing a Tar Heel timeout. Tumolo's unassisted goal, coming from behind the cage at 25:09 on a pretty move, made it 4-0.

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