Friday, November 5, 2010

Rested Wake Forest dethrones UNC soccer in penalty kicks

Wake Forest did something only two teams have been able to do in more than 20 years - defeat the UNC women's soccer team in the ACC tournament.

The Deacons, who earned a right to play Carolina with a victory over an intentionally short-handed Florida State squad, scored five penalty kicks after two scoreless overtime periods compared to four by the Heels.

The victory puts Wake Forest in the finals against Maryland at Cary's WakeMed Soccer Park Sunday at 2 p.m.

Much of the talk in the last 24 hours has been about FSU coach Mark Krikorian leaving his top seven players back home to rest for the NCAA tournament rather than play them in the ACC tourney. As a result of that move, the ACC suspended the coach for one game and fined the school $25,000.

The shorthanded FSU lineup slowed the game's pace and allowed Wake Forest to rest its top players for the Carolina game.

To his credit, UNC coach Anson Dorrance didn't blame that for the Tar Heels defeat. In fact, he found a silver lining himself.

“There’s always a mixed blessing for not playing in the final game,” Dorrance said. “We get to rest some legs going into the NCAA tournament. Hopefully get some of our injured kids back.”

The Heels have five players, including four key players, out with injuries.

Technically the Tar Heels (17-2-2) did not lose as the game goes in the record book as a tie but Wake Forest (12-7-2) advances on penalty kicks.

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