April 23, 2012
DURHAM, N.C. - The Maryland women's lacrosse team upended top-seeded North Carolina 14-10 en route to its unprecedented fourth straight Atlantic Coast Conference title Monday.
Katie Schwarzmann was named tournament most valuable player after capping her stellar weekend with a six-point showing against the Tar Heels. The junior midfielder joined Karri Ellen Johnson with four goals each to lead the Maryland (16-3) attack.
Monday's win was Maryland's third consecutive in the ACC championship against UNC (14-3). The victory avenged an early-April loss to the Tar Heels, and unlike that contest, the Terps were dominant from the first draw.
Maryland tallied two goals in the first four minutes of the match, courtesy of scores from Johnson and Kristy Black. Both scores came via assists from Alex Aust, who finished the championship with an ACC tournament career record 13 assists.
The Terps would go on to edge the Tar Heels 5-3 in the first stanza and, following an early UNC goal in the second half, erupted for a 3-0 run in-and-around the 25-minute mark. UNC attacker Abbey Friend scored to stop the drive at 21:56 but Maryland outscored the Tar Heels 5-1 in a 10-minute span midway through the second half.
The Terps were able to sustain a pesky 4-0 run from North Carolina with time winding down in the match, which was Maryland's third in the last four days. After a late five-minute stall by the Terps, Johnson capped the scoring with 27 seconds left.
Maryland's championship is its ninth in program history. In addition to Johnson, Schwarzmann, Aust and Iliana Sanza, senior goalie Brittany Dipper landed on the ACC All-Tournament team. It was the fourth straight season the reigning IWLCA National Goalie of the Year was tabbed to the all-tournament team.
"We knew coming into tonight that this was going to be a great game with two teams full of talented players," head coach Cathy Reese said. "I am really proud of our team for the way that we handled the pressure and played this one out."
With four goals Monday, Schwarzmann ended the tournament with 11, a mark that ties the ACC championship record for scores in the championship.
Maryland will celebrate its senior class Wednesday night with a home game against Georgetown at 7 p.m. at the Field Hockey & Lacrosse Complex.