first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Comments Published on April 25, 2019 at 9:49 pm Contact Andrew: [email protected] | @A_E_Grahamcenter_img With 6:12 left in the game and Syracuse up 10-7 against North Carolina, the biggest lead of the game for either team, it appeared the Orange were putting the finishing touches on its first Atlantic Coast Conference tournament win since 2016.Then the Tar Heels stormed the Orange, ripping off three goals in 45 seconds to tie the game with 3:01 left. With 1:07 left, Matt Gavin dodged from behind the cage, ducked under two SU defenders and dropped a shot over Drake Porter’s left shoulder.“I thought we felt a little too comfortable with too much time left,” Syracuse head coach John Desko said in his postgame press conference.No. 4-seed Syracuse (9-4, 2-2 ACC) fell, 11-10, to No. 5-seed North Carolina (8-6, 1-3) in the ACC tournament play-in game on Thursday night in Chapel Hill. Like the first matchup between the two sides, the teams played evenly through the first half, scoring four goals each in the first 30 minutes. But after putting the Tar Heels away with a 4-0 third quarter two Saturdays ago, the Orange couldn’t pull away and keep the Tar Heels out of reach.And Syracuse, a team that survived the first half of the season by putting together late runs and pulling away, seemed to have done it again. Three goals was enough to stiff arm UNC the first time around, but Thursday was different.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“I thought Carolina played very well,” Desko said. “It was a team that had to win tonight and they showed that.”With the loss to the Tar Heels, the Orange are bounced from the ACC tournament and will wait for their NCAA tournament fate on Selection Sunday, May 5. Currently, Syracuse ranks No. 6 among the tournament committees’ Top 10 teams, putting it in line to host a first-round game.SU and UNC ground through turnovers and sloppy play in the first 30 minutes. Early in the first quarter, a Syracuse defender stripped the ball from a UNC attack’s stick. As he flung a pass to the midfield, Timmy Kelly, a Tar Heels attack, reached up and intercepted the casual pass. By halftime, each team had coughed it up nine times.In the second half, each side buckled down after trading goals for most of the third quarter and the Orange started to pull away, seemingly for good. But even as SU built its slim margin, the Tar Heels started winning draws at the faceoff X. From the beginning of the second half to the game-tying 10th goal for UNC, the Tar Heels won 9 of 12 faceoffs.So even though the Orange had, again, built a late lead to preserve, this time it was UNC making the run, scoring the go-ahead goal and moving on to Saturday.“I thought we were a little sluggish in the first half at times,” Desko said. “I thought we worked our way through it and we had that three-goal lead. And probably not enough of a lead with the amount of time that was left on the clock.”last_img

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