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Sunday October 11, 1998No. 5 Florida Soccer Team Falls to No. 1 UNC

Gainesville, FL

The University of Florida women’s soccer team lost to No. 1 North Carolina 2-1 in overtime Sunday in front of a Percy Beard Stadium record crowd of 5,222.

Tar Heel midfielder Laurie Schwoy scored the game-winning goal 7:32 into the first sudden-death overtime period, placing a pass from Anne Remy past Florida goalkeeper Meredith Flaherty. North Carolina scored the match’s first goal, a shot from senior forward Cindy Parlow at 57:49. Florida tied the match when senior midfielder Melissa Pini hit a low shot from eight yards in the 86th minute with UNC goal keeper Siri Mullinix was out of the box to get the Percy Beard Stadium crowd off their feet.

Despite the loss, Florida coach Becky Burleigh said the Gators were in the match and the game could have gone either team’s way.

"Really it shouldn’t be disappointing considering the way we played, the effort we gave," she said. "Their coaches said that nobody else has even come close to putting that kind of pressure on them."

The standing-room only Percy Beard Stadium crowd also ranks as the second highest crowd to watch a women’s soccer match this season, second only to the crowd of 6,024 that watched UNC defeat Notre Dame in Chapel Hill on Sept. 13. Sunday’s match drew interest from media outlets all over the state and when UF Head Football Coach Steve Spurrier did not report in for his weekly media teleconference, an search of the UF-UNC crowd found him in attendance. The teleconference was canceled so that he could take in the match-up of two of the nation’s top soccer teams.

The loss was the first ever in overtime for the No. 5 Gators (11-1), which now is 6-1-3 all-time in OT matches. The Tar Heels are now 13-0 on the season and have won 34 matches in a row.

Mullinix recorded two saves, while Flaherty had nine saves for Florida. For the match, UNC outshot the Gators 18-11.

Florida next plays Tuesday in Tallahassee against Florida State (4-8-2) at 7 p.m.

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