Posted Sunday, February 18, 2007 by .
Petracca & Wagner Lead No. 18 Tar Heels Past Ohio State, 14-10
UNC gradually pulls away in the second half to win season opener for ninth straight year.
Feb. 17, 2007
BALTIMORE, MD. - Redshirt freshman attackman Gavin Petracca made his debut in a North Carolina uniform a memorable one by scoring four goals and adding an assist and sophomore attackman Bart Wagner added two goals and three assists as the No. 18 Tar Heel men's lacrosse team defeated Ohio State 14-10 Saturday afternoon at Calvert Hall College High School in Baltimore. It was Carolina's ninth straight win in a season opener and its 20th win in a lidlifter in the past 22 seasons. The Buckeyes fell to 1-1 after opening with a 13-5 win over Robert Morris last Saturday.
Sophomore attackman Michael Burns also had a big scoring day with two goals and two assists while midfielders Nick Tintle, Ben Hunt and Ryan Walterhoefer each had a goal and an assist. Both senior midfielder David Ryan and junior defenseman Brian Burke had their first career goals for UNC.
Joel Dalgarno led the Buckeye offense with a four-goal output. Six other Buckeyes scored a goal apiece in the game with Eric O'Brien adding an assist to go with his goal.
Carolina led 7-6 at the half and then methodically pulled away in the second half, building four-goal leads on two occasions, including at the final whistle. The win was also UNC's 13th in a row over the Buckeyes, who are coached by Tar Heel alumnus Joe Breschi, `90, who faced UNC's John Haus, `83, in a coaching matchup of former Carolina All-America defensemen.
Ohio State jumped on top 2-0 just 1:11 into the game, and after the Tar Heels rallied to take the lead, a three-goal run in the second quarter put the Buckeyes up 6-5, the last time they would lead. UNC led the entire second half although the Buckeyes twice cut the lead to a single goal.
Jeff Ryan scored just eight seconds into the game off an assist by O'Brien and then at 1:11 into the match Chris Friel had a goal to put the Bucks up 2-0. The Tar Heels then ran off four goals in a row. Three of them came in a span of only 58 seconds as Petracca got back-to-back feeds from Wagner to score at 8:13 and 7:45 to tie the game at 2-2. Just 30 seconds after Petracca's second goal, Ryan Walterhoefer took yet another feed from Wagner and scored on the extra-man to put the Tar Heels up for the first time in the match. With 4:22 left in the first quarter, Wagner scored his first goal, assisted by Burns, as the sophomore attackman from St. Paul's School had a hand in UNC's first four goals of the game. Joe Benson scored an extra-man goal for the Buckeyes with 37 seconds left in the first quarter to cut the Tar Heel lead to a single goal.
Petracca scored his third goal of the game 1:19 into the second quarter off an assist by Ben Hunt to restore the Tar Heels to a two-goal lead. But that lead did not last long. The Buckeyes scored three unassisted goals in a row, the first two by Dalgarno and then one by James Green, to move into the lead 6-5 with 6:29 to play in the first half.
Ben Hunt tied the game for Carolina off an assist by Tintle with 3:04 left in the half and then the Tar Heels took the lead for good with 22 seconds left before intermission as Petracca fed Ryan and the senior captain from Darien, Conn., stuck his first career goal, making it 7-6 Tar Heels.
Close defenseman Brian Burke of Fort Salonga, N.Y., got his first career goal 4:30 into the second half to make it 8-6 before a scoring drought of more than six minutes for both teams. Eventually the Heels made it 9-6 on an unassisted goal by Nick Tintle with 4:29 left in the quarter. Ohio State would not quit, however, as Dalgarno scored his third goal of the game with 1:58 left in the quarter and just five seconds later Ohio State face-off man Eric O'Brien, who won 18 of 27 on the day, tallied a goal to cut the lead to 9-8. Michael Burns then came up big for the Heels as he scored with just three seconds left in the third quarter to put North Carolina up 10-8.
Dalgarno scored his fourth unassisted goal of the game with 10:23 to play in the match, cutting Carolina's lead back to a goal. But the Heels took over after that and a three-goal spurt in just 2:03 gave the Heels the cushion they needed. Rob Driscoll scored off a feed by Ryan Walterhoefer with 9:17 to play to make it 11-9. At 7:36, Burns got his second goal of the match off an assist by freshman middie Sean Burke, his first career point. Then 22 seconds later Petracca capped his day with his fourth goal, off Burns' second assist.
The Buckeyes scored once more on a Kevin Buchanan goal with 3:58 to play but Bart Wagner answered that goal with his fifth point of the game on an unassisted goal with 2:11 to go to finish up the scoring.
The Heels outshot the Buckeyes 37-27 and had a slight edge in ground balls with 42 to 37 for OSU. The Bucks dominated the face-off circle with O'Brien winning 18 of the 27 draws in the match. The Heels countered that with a brillianty clearing game as they were successful on all 26 of their attempts. The extra-man defense for Carolina killed off five penalties while the offense produced two goals in five chances.
It was a tough day for the goalies as UNC's Grant Zimmerman had 10 goals allowed and nine saves but he was active outside the cage with five ground balls and he was outstanding in the clearing game. Ohio State's Stefan Schroeder made 13 saves and allowed 14 goals.
O'Brien led all players with 10 ground balls for the Buckeyes. UNC defenseman Tim Kaiser led the Heels with six ground balls.
The Tar Heels will be at home for the first time this season next weekend when they play back-to-back games on Saturday and Sunday against No. 14 Denver and Dartmouth. The Heels host Denver Saturday at 1 p.m. at Fetzer Field, looking to avenge an 11-8 loss to the Pioneers suffered last year in Denver. Carolina will then host Dartmouth on Sunday at 12 noon at Fetzer Field.