NORFOLK, Va. -- All thats left to tie up the feel-good story of the field hockey season is a nice little blue bow, and that will come on Sunday.But will it be royal blue, the color unseeded Delaware wears, or a familiar lighter shade that belongs to a North Carolina program vying for its seventh NCAA title?In two thrilling semifinals, the Tar Heels downed Big East champion UConn 2-1 in overtime, and the unseeded Blue Hens continued to pad their reputation as giant killers by avenging an earlier defeat to Princeton with a 3-2 win at L.R. Hill Sports Complex at Old Dominion University.We talk about stress tests, and they have seen every stress test in the book, said Delaware coach Rolf van de Kerkhof, whose Blue Hens have beaten Louisville, top-seeded Duke and now Princeton in this NCAA tournament. We are ready. It doesnt matter who they play today or Sunday. I had all the confidence in the world they would do what they were able to do.For Delaware (22-2) to win its first NCAA championship on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET, it will have to get past North Carolina (21-5) and its storied pedigree.But Delaware has Greta Nauck, the NCAAs top scoring threat, and an offensive aggressiveness that turned up the heat on Princeton (12-8), which was looking to return to the title game for the first time since 2012.Delaware outshot Princeton 12-9, including 6-1 in penalty corners in the second half. Senior Esmee Peet scored two of her teams three goals, including the game-winner, to push the Blue Hens to their first title game since their AIAW days in 1978.It looked like the game would head to overtime when Princetons Cat Caro tied it with 3:27 remaining, only to see Peet make good off a pass from Meghan Winesett with 1:20 left. That warmed up the bundled-up Delaware fans -- including five of the six families of the teams European players who had flown in just for this final four.We had to dig deep to do what we had to do, but we got it done, said van de Kerkhof, whose team scored the final goal despite being a player down. Well celebrate til midnight, then get back to work.All credit to Meghan, Peet said. She saw me standing and I had to put it into the goal. Its amazing to do that for the team, especially before the game ends to avoid the overtime.Delaware took a step into the big time last weekend when the Blue Hens upset Duke to advance to field hockeys final four for the first time since 1982. These Hens play with a looseness and a glee of young kids on a Christmas morning, climbing the bleachers prior to the game to snap pics in front of the words NCAA Championships. Only they blocked out the final four letters so it read NCAA Champions.That was us, Peet said, laughing, and van de Kerkhof noted this isnt a group that plans to bring home a participation trophy.When he interviewed for the job at Delaware a little more than six years ago, it wasnt to win the Colonial Athletic Association title. Theres only one tournament I care for, he told the athletic director. At the end of the day, theres only one tournament in the country you want to be dancing in, and I love November madness as it relates to field hockey.Van de Kerkhof consistently talks about his brand of Delaware hockey, an attack-first game, he says, that the Blue Hens have yet to complete this postseason.Today we put one good half together, he said. Maybe we can put two good halves together against Carolina. Yes, they have a rich history -- we respect that -- but that was in the past. Right now its 2016.The Blue Hens will play a Tar Heels team that started the season at No. 1 and will look to finish it that way after handing UConn only its second loss of the season.The Tar Heels, in the NCAA title game for the 17th time in program history, rallied from a goal down after UConn opened the scoring in the opening minutes of the second half.Barbara Hoogens rocket from the top of the circle escaped Shannon Johnsons reach and marked the first score the Carolina defense gave up in the tournament after having shut out Stanford and Maryland last weekend.The Tar Heels answered with a beauty from Sam Night to set up a seven-on-seven overtime that North Carolina dominated. UConn (22-2) never managed another shot on goal, and the Tar Heels won it off their third of the period, a give-and-go feed for Lauren Moyers 23rd of the season, an Atlantic Coast Conference best.Overtime is either heartbreaking or exhilarating, and on this day it was a difficult ending, Huskies coach Nancy Stevens said.While Delaware sees these championships as a carousel that keeps spinning, a North Carolina win would end a drought. Coach Karen Shelton watched Princeton celebrate on this Norfolk field back in 2012. Her program started this season ranked No. 1, then lost its first game, lost an uncharacteristic five games and did not win the ACC. Though the Tar Heels are the winningest team in the national tournament with 60 victories, they have not won an NCAA title since 2009.Maybe that changes Sunday.Becoming a team is a process, Shelton said. We had our struggles early. We werent playing poorly, but we werent getting results. 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Perth Wildcats coach Trevor Gleeson has vowed to weed out his underperforming stars after watching his team crash to their third straight NBL loss on Thursday night.Wildcats forward Matt Knight suffered what appeared to be a serious hip injury during the upset 90-75 loss to Brisbane at Perth Arena.It was Perths third home loss this season, and leaves them precariously placed with a 6-6 record heading into a string of away matches.Wildcats players and coaches held a heart-to-heart meeting earlier this week in a bid to clear the air and get their season back on track.But the players came out flat against Brisbane, and trailed 49-29 at halftime.Gleeson didnt mince his words after the loss, declaring he will bench his stars if they dont lift their act.Weve got too many passengers, Gleeson said.And weve got to weed those guys out, and play the guys that are playing at the level required.We need our senior players to lead by example. Our backs are against the wall without a question.Weve got to find a way to get it done and to support each other. Theres not enough team work in that.Weve got a hard battle again. Were going to find out some home truths very shortly.When asked how he could weed out so many players without bringing anyone else in, Gleeson replied: Well just play the DPs (development players).Mason Bragg deserveed to play a lot of minutes.ddddddddddddHe would have played even longer if he hadnt got a smack in the mouth at the end.Import Jaron Johnson failed to fire against the Bullets, scoring just six points in 18 minutes of court time.But he wasnt alone, with only Casey Prather (22 points) able to hold his head up high.Knight was stretchered off the court and sent off for an X-ray after injuring his left hip while falling to the floor in the third quarter.The 31-year-old has battled shoulder issues for the past year, and Gleeson hopes the latest injury isnt serious.If Knight is ruled out for Saturdays clash with the 36ers in Adelaide, the Wildcats will attempt to get clearance to sign Lucas Walker as an injury replacement for the second time this season.Wildcats skipper Damian Martin (knee) isnt due back until mid-January.Bullets coach Andrej Lemanis was proud of the way his team bounced back from last weeks 18-point loss to Adelaide.Keeping them to 38 per cent from the field is a good defensive effort, Lemanis said.And on the back of that, them only having 12 offensive rebounds is a testament to the commitment we made on doing the effort things.And offensively, we got back to sharing the ball. cheap falcons jerseys cheap ravens jerseys cheap bills jerseys cheap bears jerseys cheap bengals jerseys cheap cowboys jerseys cheap lions jerseys cheap texans jerseys cheap colts jerseys cheap jaguars jerseys cheap chiefs jerseys cheap rams jerseys cheap dolphins jerseys cheap vikings jerseys cheap saints jerseys cheap giants jerseys cheap jets jerseys cheap eagles jerseys cheap steelers jerseys cheap 49ers jerseys ' ' '