CHAPEL HILL — The expectations are suddenly rocketing up for a Carolina baseball team that is putting it all together at the right time. From Angel Zarate’s first-pitch home run in the first inning, the Tar Heels were in command, combining timely hitting, productive outs, solid defense and good pitching to earn an 11–0 senior-day victory Saturday over Florida State at Boshamer Stadium for their first ACC shutout of the season.
CHAPEL HILL — If you are going to battle North Carolina’s baseball team, it’s best to do it before the exam break. The Tar Heels, for the second straight season, have gone from a team unlikely to make the NCAA tournament field before exams to earning high marks with the selection committee. After losing five consecutive ACC series before the break, the Tar Heels defeated Florida State 10–4 on Friday night to clinch their third successive league series and put them in a good position for a postseason berth.
CHAPEL HILL — North Carolina is back in the women’s lacrosse Final Four but, for the second consecutive season, Stony Brook and its vexing zone defense didn’t make it easy. Just like in last year’s quarterfinals, the undefeated, No. 1-ranked and top-seeded Tar Heels (20–0) had to rally against the Seawolves to keep their season alive. UNC rebounded from the lowest-scoring half of the season (three first-half goals) and used a four-goal second-half run to advance Thursday at Dorrance Field. The Tar Heels’ 8–5 NCAA tournament quarterfinal victory over the No. 7-ranked Seawolves (16–3) was their 33rd consecutive home win.
CHAPEL HILL — North Carolina women’s lacrosse stars have been here before — undefeated, top-ranked, No. 1 seed and in the NCAA tournament quarterfinals. The Tar Heels (18–0) are in the same situation as a year ago, facing Stony Brook at Dorrance Field with a Final Four berth on the line. But five-time All-America attacker Jamie Ortega says that they are in a different place as they prepare to play the No. 8-ranked Seawolves (16–2) at 7:30 Thursday night (ESPNU).
CHAPEL HILL — What does domination look like? That was on display as North Carolina’s top-ranked and No. 1-seed women’s lacrosse team overwhelmed No. 15-ranked Virginia in the second round of the NCAA tournament. After falling behind in their last two ACC Tournament games, the unbeaten Tar Heels, who got a first-round bye, took charge early Sunday and left little doubt. Carolina scored the game’s first 13 goals and the last 11, dominating draws early in a 24–2 victory at Dorrance Field behind senior attacker Jamie Ortega’s four goals and five assists. That was the most goals in an NCAA tournament game in program history.
North Carolina’s pursuit of the program’s third women’s lacrosse national title begins Sunday with a hungry team intent on getting past the national semifinals. The No. 1-ranked and top-seeded Tar Heels, the only undefeated team in the country at 18–0, play at Dorrance Field on Sunday at noon (ESPN+) against the winner of Friday’s 5 p.m. first-round game in Chapel Hill between Virginia (9–9) and Southern Cal (13–4). UNC beat the Cavaliers 17–7 on the road on April 14.
CHAPEL HILL — Winning ACC women’s lacrosse titles has become routine for powerhouse North Carolina but the No. 1-ranked Tar Heels’ route to their sixth consecutive league title on a soggy Dorrance Field was anything but routine. Perennial nemesis and No. 2-ranked Boston College had a lot to do with that for one half with the unyielding play of Eagles goalkeeper Rachel Hall, who held UNC to a season-low four first-half goals. She was no match for the Tar Heels’ incredible third-quarter offensive assault as they rallied from a three-goal deficit with 11 consecutive goals for 16–9 victory Saturday night and their 28th consecutive ACC tournament win.
CHAPEL HILL — If North Carolina is going to turn the season around, the Tar Heels will do it with the kind of pitching that Wednesday threw them into the exam break in dominant fashion. With nearly a week in between games, Coach Scott Forbes used his top two starters, right-hander Max Carlson and left-hander Brandon Shaeffer, and they followed up good outings last weekend by holding Liberty in check.
CHAPEL HILL — Power surges have short-circuited North Carolina in recent weeks and Georgia Tech played the long (ball) game well. Homer runs, two of the five from designated hitter Tim Borden II, drove in every Yellow Jackets run in their 11–8 victory Sunday at Boshamer Stadium as Tar Heels pitching has given up 30 home runs in the last 12 games.
A season after North Carolina fell a win short of the national championship game, the Tar Heels are No. 6 in the preseason Inside Lacrosse Preseason Media poll. The Tar Heels come off a 13–3 season that ended with a 12–11 loss to Virginia in the semifinals of the NCAA tournament.
By R.L. Bynum Monday capped a crazy 16 days of running four marathons for former Carolina runner Shalane Flanagan, with still two marathons and 27 days to go. The Olympian, three-time national champion at UNC and 2017 New York City Marathon winner finished the Chicago Marathon on Sunday and the Boston Marathon on Monday in…
By R.L. Bynum CHAPEL HILL — North Carolina’s volleyball team has impressively met every challenge during its nonconference schedule, sweeping Davidson 3–0 on Saturday to take an 11–0 record into ACC play. It’s the first time that the Tar Heels have finished their nonconference schedule undefeated since the 2013 team won its first 15 games…