Syracuse moves on to ACC semifinals with penalty-kick victory over UNC

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first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Hendrik Hilpert walked out to the net as his teammates stood arm-in-arm watching from midfield. Hilpert spit in his gloves and jumped up and down in a jumping jack like motion as North Carolina’s Warren Marshall lined up for the penalty kick.Orange midfielder Liam Callahan had just curved a shot into the top left corner of the net to give Syracuse a one-goal lead in the game-deciding penalty kicks.Marshall took his shot and Hilpert dove to the right. The ball skied over the crossbar and the SU goalie raised one fist in the air from his spot on the ground as his teammates converged.“When you get to a penalty shootout it’s a bit of a lottery. It could go either way,” head coach Ian McIntyre said.After 110 minutes of overtime and regulation ended gridlocked at 1-1, Syracuse (12-5-2, 3-4-1 Atlantic Coast) beat North Carolina (14-2-2, 6-1-1) in penalty kicks, 4-3, on Sunday to advance to the semifinals of the ACC tournament.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSU will head to Clemson on Wednesday for a matchup at 7 p.m. in the ACC semifinals.“I’m very pleased for the guys,” McIntyre said. “I think they deserve this. It’s always nice to stay alive in tournament play and move on.”The Orange took a 1-0 lead 27 minutes into the game. Tarheels defender Jonathan Campbell stuck his foot out to stop a cross by Callahan and deflected the ball into the net as SU forward Chris Nanco crashed into the goalie.It took a few seconds for any call to be made or players to react, but the own goal put SU ahead.A one-goal, zero-save affair in the first half turned into a 14-shot, seven-save second half that saw UNC score its only goal to tie the game.Tucker Hume raced past SU midfielder Juuso Pasanen and hit a strike from 25 yards away that Hilpert got a piece of, but still found the back of the net with 30 minutes left.“You get worried when we didn’t score that second goal and they came back,” McIntyre said.Syracuse and the Tar Heels each saw big chances through the rest of regulation, but each time the goalies answered the challenge. UNC’s James Pyle made multiple point-blank stops on Ben Polk and Nanco shots. Hilpert fought off a shot from 25 yards out headed for the top left corner, then got his fingertips on a line drive free kick from about 19 yards out.Following two overtime periods, the game went to penalty kicks.“There was no real pressure on us I didn’t feel because we were the underdog and ultimately the seven seed,” McIntyre said. “I just wanted the guys to be loose.”Oyvind Alseth, Oskar Sewerin and Nanco scored for SU before Callahan’s goal in the sixth round put UNC’s ACC tournament hopes on the foot of Marshall.When Syracuse lost to the Tarheels on Oct. 10, the Orange squandered a 1-0 lead that it held for more than 52 minutes of the game. SU watched UNC tie its 1-0 lead again on Sunday, but lasted through penalty kicks to get the win.“To come out on the other side is a testament to how this group is evolving and moving forward,” McIntyre said. Comments Published on November 8, 2015 at 4:05 pm Contact Jon: [email protected] | @jmettuslast_img

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