PROVO — The top-seeded BYU women’s soccer team will continue its homestand through the 2012 NCAA tournament this week when it hosts No. 2 seed North Carolina on Friday at 6 p.m.
The Cougars reached the quarterfinals after defeating No. 4 seed Marquette in penalty kicks after both teams were held scoreless through regulation and two overtime periods. Freshmen Paige Hunt, Michele Murphy and Marissa Nimmer, sophomores Jaiden Thornock and Kayla Varner, and senior Cami Jensen each scored penalty kicks to help the Cougars seal the victory. Varner’s goal was the game-winner.
BYU is led offensively by senior Jessica Ringwood’s nine goals, followed closely by freshman Michele Murphy’s eight. Senior Carlee Payne Holmoe has nine assists to lead the squad. Eleven different players have recorded double-digit shots through the season thus far and 19 players on the roster have tallied at least one.
The Cougars are outscoring their opponents 50-11 in 23 games this season while averaging 18.7 shots per game and holding their opponents to 7.9.
BYU is on a 20-game unbeaten streak, dating back to the team’s third game of the season on Aug. 25. BYU’s defense and junior goalkeeper Erica Owens haven’t allowed more than one goal in a game since the season-opener almost three months ago.
The Tar Heels are making thier first-ever trip to Provo this week and have a long tradition of college soccer excellence. The Tar Heels have won 20 NCAA championships, including three in the last six years.
The Tar Heels are led offensively by four players who have each scored seven goals this season in Summer Green, Amber Brooks, Kealia Ohai and Maria Lubrano.
UNC’s offense is outscoring its opponents 48-15 on the year while averaging 17 shots per game and holding its opponents to just 7.3.
The Tar Heels fell to Virginia in the ACC Tournament but were selected as an at-large bid after going 10-5-2 through the regular season.
UNC defeated Radford 2-0 in the first round, Illinois 9-2 in the second round and No. 3 seed Baylor in the third round on penalty kicks.
The game can be seen live on BYUtv and online for free at byutv.org.
Tickets can be purchased online at BYUtickets.com or on game day. Reserved seating is sold out.
Adult general admission is $7.