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Old Gold & Black

'Covers the campus like the magnolias'
"Covers the campus like the magnolias"

Old Gold & Black

"Covers the campus like the magnolias"

Old Gold & Black

Women’s soccer rocks the Hurricanes, earns ACC Tournament berth

With a 2-0 win over Miami, Wake Forest will take on Clemson to begin postseason play
Evan Harris
Emily Morris (center) contributed a goal and assist during Thursday night’s match at Miami.

Heading into Thursday’s season finale, only five of the six ACC Tournament seeds were filled. Wake Forest was penciled into the last spot with 13 points in conference play, but nothing would be for certain until the end of the night. 

Wake Forest (10-2-5, 4-2-4) didn’t have to beat Miami (3-10-4, 2-7-1) to secure a trip to the postseason — a Virginia Tech draw against Pittsburgh would send them in as well — but instead of waiting for other games to play out, the Demon Deacons decided to take matters into their own hands. The 2-0 victory over the Hurricanes in Coral Gables gave Wake Forest its second ACC Tournament berth in three years.

“We put in a complete team performance tonight,” Head Coach Tony da Luz said. “We dominated the game from start to finish. I’m proud of our stretch run.” 

The Demon Deacons quickly made themselves at home, maintaining possession of the ball nearly 60% of the match and boasting a 14-1 shot and 8-0 corner kick advantage. The most pivotal corner kick occurred during the 59th minute, when junior midfielder Emily Morris curved a ball at the goal line, where junior defender Laurel Ansbrow was there to gently head it in the net. 

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Morris continued to make her presence known with a 75th minute goal, sealing the win for the Demon Deacons. Junior forward Emily Murphy threaded a leading pass past Miami defenders towards the streaking Morris, who slid and effortlessly tapped the ball past the opposing keeper. 

Murphy, who finished the regular season as the team’s second-highest scorer (six goals, two assists), led Wake Forest in shots and fouls (3 each) on Thursday. Keeper Payton Cahill was not tasked with much but still earned the clean sheet, ending the season undefeated in goal (4-0-3). 

The 2023 season marked the first time in program history that Wake Forest was not shut out in a single game. The two losses were also the lowest tally in program history, improving on 2011’s three-loss mark.

The season will continue over the weekend as Wake Forest travels to Clemson on Oct. 29 to face the No. 3-seeded Tigers. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. on ACC Network. The two teams have not faced each other yet this season. 

“This team deserves to be in the ACC Tournament,” da Luz said. “We are playing with confidence right now, which will carry us into Sunday’s quarterfinal match.”

The winner of Sunday’s match will travel to WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, N.C. to face No. 2-seeded Notre Dame on Thursday, Nov. 2 in the ACC Tournament semifinals.

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About the Contributor
Cooper Sullivan
Cooper Sullivan, Sports Editor
Cooper Sullivan is a senior from Winston-Salem majoring in Communication with double minors in Journalism and Art History. He enjoys long walks on the beach, dancing like no one is watching and "committing to the bit".

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