This season showed just how much the game and the competition have changed since the days when the Tar Heels dominated the sport.
Injuries forced both teams to revise their lineups, and the result has paid dividends for defenders Hanna Gardner of North Carolina and Whitney Church of Penn State.
They both needed overtime, but Penn State and UNC outlasted opponents Florida State and top-seeded Stanford to advance to Sunday's College Cup final.
The NCAA soccer field has been whittled to eight teams. Graham Hays has all you need to know about the tournament, including how these teams have survived and what to expect in the quarterfinal matchups.