[MEN'S COLLEGE CUP] For the second game in a row, Aaron Horton came off the bench and scored the winning goal in the final minute of play to give unbeaten Louisville a 2-1 win over North Carolina that moves the Cardinals into Sunday's Men's College Cup championship game against Akron (TV: ESPN2, 4 p.m. ET).
A week earlier, Horton's goal gave Louisville a 5-4 win over UCLA. This time, Ryan Smith fed Horton and he slotted the ball home from a tight angle past the charging Scott Goodwin to score with 51 seconds left in regulation.
After a quiet first half, the Cardinals finally struck in the 57th minute off a corner kick from freshman Dylan Mares that found Austin Berry, who scored on a header for his fifth of the season.
The lead was shortlived, however, as four minutes later Alex Dixon crossed the ball into the box and found Stephen McCarthy for the header to even the score at 1-1.
"We started a little slow in the first half, played a little tentative," said Louisville coach Ken Lolla. "But we came out in the second half very aggressively and stepped up the tempo. We set up a lot of chances and were rewarded late in the game."
The win sends Louisville into the final against Akron -- the team Lolla left in 2005 to take over the Cardinal program.
Dec. 8 in Santa Barbara, Calif.
Louisville 2 North Carolina 1. Goals: Berry (Mares) 58, Horton (Smith) 90; McCarthy (Dixon) 62.
Louisville -- Boudreaux, Rodgers, Granger, Murray, Berry, Campbell, DelPiccolo, Farrell, DeLeon, Mares, Rolfe. Subs: Smith, Horton, Lipka.
North Carolina -- Goodwin, Anibaba, Ababio, McKinney, Rose, Urso, McCarty, McCarthy, Farfan, Martinez, Dixon. Subs: Rice, Gafa, Murphy, Lovejoy.
Referee: Michael Kennedy.