Conference Watch: UNC stays in ACC women's hunt

No. 9 North Carolina rallied to beat No. 8 Notre Dame, 2-1, and end its three-game losing streak, tied for the longest losing streak in the Tar Heels' history. More importantly, the win kept UNC in the hunt for a berth in the ACC Tournament. Only the top four teams in the regular season qualify for the ACC Tournament Nov. 6 and 8 in Cary, North Carolina.

ACC Women's Standings:
RANK TEAM RECORD
#1 Florida State 6-0-2
#2 Virginia 6-1-0
#5 Clemson 6-2-0
#4 Virginia Tech 5-2-1
#9 North Carolina 5-3-0
Boston College 4-3-1
#21 Duke 3-2-3
#8 Notre Dame 4-4-0
Pittsburgh 4-4-0
Louisville 3-4-1
Syracuse 2-6-0
Miami (Fla.) 2-6-0
Wake Forest 1-7-0
N.C. State 0-7-0

The Tar Heels, unbeaten and top-ranked just two weeks ago, are now 5-3-0 and sit in fifth place in the ACC. Notre Dame fell to 4-4-0 in conference play. Thursday's other big result in the ACC was Virginia Tech's 0-0 tie with top-ranked Florida State. The draw kept the Hokies ahead of UNC for the fourth and final playoff berth.
 
Notre Dame took a 1-0 lead less than two minutes into the second half on Sabrina Flores' goal from 10 yards out after Carolina’s Julia Ashley was stripped of the ball.
 
Carolina, which had suffered back-to-back shutouts against Florida State and Duke, rediscovered its scoring touch on goals by Alexa Newfield and Joanna Boyles less than four minutes apart to take the lead.
 
In the 71st minute, Newfield, one of five Tar Heel subs in the 61st minute, was taken down for a penalty kick that she converted to end a streak of 315 scoreless minutes for the Tar Heels dating back to a goal by Alex Kimball in the 35th minute of a 2-1 loss at Louisville on Oct. 8.
 
After a Notre Dame foul 25 yards from goal, Newfield sent a free kick into the box, where Boyles finished into the right side of the goal with a header for the game-winner.

UNC is back at Fetzer Field on Sunday against No. 5 Clemson, currently tied for second in the ACC behind top-ranked Florida State.
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