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Replay-aided UNC goal spoils Pitt’s upset bid

Photo Courtesy UNC Athletics YouTube Highlights

Replay-aided UNC goal spoils Pitt’s upset bid

ACC Women’s Soccer 

FINAL: North Carolina 1, Pitt 0

Box Score /  Stats

The Pitt Panthers will have to wait a little longer for a signature win against the most successful program in NCAA women’s soccer, as they came up short against No. 5 North Carolina, losing 1-0, as the Tar Heels were awarded the match’s lone goal with the assistance of Video Replay Assistant (VAR) on Thursday evening at Ambrose Urbanic Field.

With the match remaining scoreless in the 81st minute, despite North Carolina’s persistant pressure which included 24 total shots (10 on frame), the Tar Heels found the game winner when Avery Patterson’s header from a Maggie Pierce corner kick hit the lower part of the crossbar.

As the ball came down, PItt’s 5-foot-2 defender Chloe Minas, defending along the goal line, reacted and elevated to get her body up and in front of the ball to keep the ball from crossing the goal line.

After the Panthers quickly cleared the ball away, the game officials, who didn’t signal for a goal, decided to go to the Video Assistant Referee (VAR), to determine if the ball did cross the goal line.

Here are a few still shots, from the game’s replay, of the deciding play of the match.

The officials awarded North Carolina with the goal.  The Tar Heels would then see out the final nine minutes of the match by controlling possession to pick up their 9th win of the season.

Pitt’s Head Coach Randy Waldrum weighed in after the match on the goal.

The match was controlled by the Tar Heels, but Robinson was up to the task, keeping her team in the match, making seven saves.

In addition to its advantage in shots, North Carolina also held a significant edge on corner kicks (11-0) and in possession.   Anna Bout had the Panthers’ lone shot on goal.

This is the closest Pitt has come to beating the Tar Heels since back-to-back one-goal losses in 2013 and 2014. 

The Panthers will now travel to Durham, NC, for a match with No. 2 Duke on Sunday.

MATCH HIGHLIGHTS

 

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John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

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