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Cav men travel to Carolina

Coming off an exhilarating 1-0 overtime victory over Virginia Commonwealth Wednesday night, the eighth-ranked Virginia men's soccer team will face the 10th-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels this Sunday at 2 p.m. in Chapel Hill.

Wednesday night, the Cavaliers defeated the No. 20 Rams in front of 1,174 people at Klockner Stadium. Freshman forward Alecko Eskandarian scored his fourth goal of the season in the 10th minute of sudden death, allowing the Cavaliers to narrowly escape the upset.

Sunday's game against North Carolina (6-1, 1-0 ACC) likely will not be any easier.

"They're a big team, probably the biggest team in the ACC," Virginia coach George Gelnovatch said of the Heels. "They're a fairly veteran team. They've been together for a while. They are a team that will make it very difficult for us."

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  • North Carolina's Official Athletic Site

    Virginia (5-2, 1-0) will be helped out by the return of sophomore center midfielder Kyle Martino. Martino, a finalist for college soccer's MVP award, sat out the VCU game after receiving an automatic one-game suspension for drawing two yellow cards in Virginia's win at No. 5 Wake Forest Saturday. Martino's return should make a big difference for the Cavaliers against a strong North Carolina squad.

    "Kyle has a special talent at creating opportunities," Eskandarian said. "We have players that do this just as effectively, just in a different manner, but Kyle is just more opportunistic. That's why he's so great."

    Another reason the Cavaliers have to be confident is the recent play of sophomore goalkeeper Kyle Singer. Singer had a brilliant game against Virginia Commonwealth, recording his second consecutive shutout and the sixth in his Virginia career.

    "He hasn't made any mistakes," Gelnovatch said. "He's just been very steady."

    The North Carolina game also should test Virginia's ability to score goals, something the Cavs had a problem with Wednesday against the Rams' bunker defense. Gelnovatch said he expects the Tar Heels to employ similar tactics.

    "I would imagine that their posture is going to be somewhat dropped off as well, again probably putting the onus on us to be the attacking team and the team that's got to break them down," Gelnovatch said. "Hopefully we can handle it and it'll make us better, but it's not a lot of fun"


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