Navy shocked Penn in the first round and dismantled UMass in the second round for an opportunity to play the Tar Heels in Chapel Hill in the Elite 8. The winner of this game will go to Boston to play in the Final Four on Memorial Day weekend.
Against UMass, Julia Collins scored 8 goals while Kayla Harris added 4 more. Morgan Young, Kelly Larkin and Meg O’Donnell all added 3 goals. The Navy team won 23-11 in a game that was never close. After this type of outing, one might expect the game in Chapel Hill to be a high scoring affair. Navy has some very talented scorers so UNC will have to be on their game if they hope to move on to the 2017 Final Four.
The UNC defense was very strong versus UVA throughout much of their second round game. In fact, UVA would have been held to single digits had there not been a running clock and Jenny Levy giving the backups a chance to play. Maggie Auslander, Charlotte Sofield and Erin Kelly held their own against UVA’s best attackers. We expect to see the same when Navy comes to Chapel Hill next weekend.
Navy’s Jenna Collins has scored 72 goals this season so she will get on the scoreboard against the Tar Heels. Her sister, Julia, notched 8 goals against UMass so these sisters are going to be a focus for the Heels defense. The other leading goal scorers for Navy are Morgan Young (53), Kelly Larkin (47), Meg O’Donnell (48). Unlike UNC’s balanced attack, Navy only has seven players that scored more than 10 goals this season and most of the goals came from the aforementioned players.
Navy lost to ACC teams Duke (12-20), Boston College (11-20) and UVA (13-16) this season. Navy has won eight games in a row, but it has been against inferior competition when it comes to what they will be facing on Fetzer Field.
An interesting side note is that former UNC attacker Aly Messinger is an assistant coach at Navy this season.