No. 3 Gator lacrosse opens season at UNC

UF's Brittany Dashiell (22) finished last season with 44 goals scored, placing her as a finalist for the Tewaaraton Trophy for best overall collegiate lacrosse player.

Matt Stamey/ Staff photographer/ FILE
Published: Saturday, February 9, 2013 at 6:30 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, February 8, 2013 at 8:30 p.m.

The No. 3 Florida lacrosse team opens its regular season today in Chapel Hill, N.C., against No. 5 North Carolina. Opening draw is set for noon on ESPN3.



WHO: UF at North Carolina
WHEN: Noon
TV: ESPN3 (online stream)

It marks the third season in a row the teams have met for the Gators' season opener. Last season, UF fell behind in the first half and couldn't recover in an 11-9 decision to the Tar Heels.

UNC, the reigning ACC champs, returns nine starters from the 2012 season when it went 15-4 and a perfect 5-0 in the ACC. The Tar Heels fell to Syracuse in the quarterfinals of the NCAA tournament.

The Gators are coming off the most successful season in program history, when they posted a 19-3 overall record and 5-0 ALC mark en route to both the regular season and tournament championships. They earned the overall No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament and advanced to the national semifinals.

UF returns nearly all starters, including Tewaaraton finalist midfielder Brittany Dashiell, All-American senior attacker Kitty Cullen and ALC Rookie of the Year Nora Barry on offense.

IWLCA Goalie of the Year senior Mikey Meagher and senior All-American defenders Sam Farrell and Jamie Reeg anchor the defensive attack. Twelve freshmen will also make their regular season debuts.

The Gators held their lone exhibition game of the season on Jan. 24 when the England National Team returned to Gainesville for the second straight year. UF outlasted the Brits in an 18-13 win.

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