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May. 1, 2000

#1 Virginia (11-1/3-0) vs. Butler (5-8/2-2)

May 2, 2000
1:00 p.m.
Klockner Stadium
Charlottesville, Va.

Game Info

Virginia concludes the regular season with a “Businessman’s Special” thisafternoon against Butler at 1:00 p.m. at Klockner Stadium.

The Cavaliers have won their last 11 games and can tie a school record forconsecutive victories with a win today. Virginia, the nation’s top rankedteam, is 11-1 overall this season. Butler comes in with a 5-8 overallrecord.

Today’s game is the final home game for several Cavaliers, including DuffyBirckhead, David Bruce, Ryan Curtis, Jason Hard, Jay Jalbert, DrewMcKnight, Ben O’Neil, Will Quayle, Peter Ragosa, Richard Reid, BruceTownsend, Court Weisleder and Doug Worthen.

The Series vs. the Bulldogs

This is just the second meeting between the two schools. Virginia won thefirst game 16-11 last season. The meeting last season was Virginia’s firstgame ever played in Indiana, in what is regarded as the longest trip (interms of miles) in the history of the UVa program.

UVa used a five-goal spurt in the third quarter to break open a tightcontest and post the victory. Jay Jalbert led Virginia with four goals,while Tucker Radebaugh notched three goals and three assists.Like this year’s game, the meeting last season was the Cavaliers’ finaltune-up before the NCAA Tournament.

Four Common Opponents

Virginia and Butler have four opponents in common this season. The chartbelow shows the results of these common opponent games.

UVa Butler
Duke W-12-7 L-14-10
Radford W-15-3 W-12-11
Ohio State W-13-7 W-9-8
No. Carolina W-13-7, 17-16 L-13-7

Cavaliers Await NCAA Bid

This is Virginia’s final game of the regular season as the Cavaliers havetheir final tune-up for the NCAA Tournament.Bids to the NCAA Tournament will be announced on Sunday (May 7) at 7:30p.m. The selection show will be televised on HTS.

McKnight, Starsia Named ACC’s Best

Senior attackman Drew McKnight was named the ACC Player of the Year, whilehead coach Dom Starsia was named the conference’s Coach of the Year invoting by the league’s four head coaches.

The Virginia Beach, Va., native is among the national and ACC leaders insccoring (48 points, 4.00 per game), goals ( 26, 2.17 per game) and assists(22, 1.83 per game).

McKnight accumulated 20 goals and 20 assists in just eight games thisseason, as fast as any Cavalier has reached these figures in the last 30years.

His selection marks the second year in a row a Cavalier has been selectedthe player of the year. Tucker Radebaugh, an assistant coach at UVa thisseason, won the award last season.

Starsia was named the conference’s top coach for the second year in a rowas he led the Cavaliers to the ACC title again this season. He has led theCavaliers to an 11-1 overall record and the #1 spot in the polls. Virginiahas won its last 11 games and are one win away from tying the school recordfor most consecutive wins over collegiate opponents.

Starsia also won the league’s coaching award in 1995 and 1997.

Under Starsia’s tutelage, Virginia has produced 41 All-Americans, 28All-ACC selections, four ACC Rookies of the Year and three ACC Players ofthe Year. He has a 90-28 record in eight seasons at UVa, while guiding histeam into the NCAA playoffs every year.

Cavaliers Top Ohio State in Last Game

Conor Gill had a hand in eight of Virginia’s first 11 goals to leadVirginia to a 13-7 victory over Ohio State last Saturday before a recordcrowd of 1,855 at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus, Ohio.

Gill scored four goals and added four assists for a career-high eightpoints to spearhead the Cavalier offense. Jay Jalbert and Drew McKnighteach contributed two goals, while Ian Shure dished off a career-high threeassists.

Gill scored three consecutive goals (UVa’s 3rd, 4th and 5th) in the firsthalf and assisted on one other (UVa’s 2nd goal) as UVa opened a 5-0halftime lead.

Virginia extended its lead in the third quarter with five goals with Gillscoring once and adding two assists in the period as the lead reacheddouble digits (10-0). The Buckeyes averted a shutout with a goal with lessthan two minutes remaining in the third quarter. The goal was Ohio State’sfirst in 32 years against Virginia following last season’s shutout.Virginia coach Dom Starsia replaced goalie Derek Kenney with Ben O’Neil tostart the fourth quarter and Ohio State exploited the change by scoring sixgoals in the period.

UVa Has Nation’s Longest Winning Streak, Could Tie Record Today

The Cavaliers bring an 11-game winning streak into today’s game againstButler. The current winning streak, the nation’s longest, is Virginia’slongest since a record 11-game run in 1972-73.

A win over Butler would tie the school record for the longest collegiatewinning streak in school history. The Cavaliers won 12 straight games from1970-71.

Overall Virginia has won 18 of its last 19 games dating back to lastseason’s ACC Tournament to mark the best 19-game stretch in school history.

Seniors Make Final UVa Appearance

Today’s game marks the final Klockner Stadium game for 13 Cavaliers. Thoseplaying in their final home game today include Duffy Birckhead, DavidBruce, Ryan Curtis, Jason Hard, Jay Jalbert, Drew McKnight, Ben O’Neil,Will Quayle (who has a year of eligibility remaining and could come backnext season), Peter Ragosa, Richard Reid, Bruce Townsend, Court Weislederand Doug Worthen.

This group of players has been instrumental in putting together one of thebest four-year runs in school history, including winning the nationalchampionship last season.

They have won three of the last four ACC titles and have been invited tothe NCAA Tournament every year and have never been ranked lower thanseventh. Their overall collegiate record stands at 43-12 (.782).

Gill Takes Over Team’s Scoring Lead

Sophomore attackman Conor Gill scored a career-high eight points (4g, 4a)last Saturday against Ohio State. The performance enabled him to wrestlethe team scoring lead from ACC Player of the Year Drew McKnight, who hadled the team all season.

Gill tallied one goal and added four assists against Maryland in the finalsof the ACC Tournament and now has five goals and eight assists in the lasttwo games.

Curiously, Gill’s scoring statistics at the moment-22 goals, 30 assists-areidentical to the numbers he compiled last season (in 16 games) in beingnamed the ACC Rookie of the Year.

With 104 career points (44g, 60a) as a sophomore, Gill has reached thecentury mark in scoring faster than any UVa player since Tim Whiteley in1993-94. Whiteley recorded 109 points through his first two seasons.An amazing example of Gill’s offense prowess shows an uncanny ability toboth score and set up others for scoring opportunities. In 28 career games,he has either scored a goal or recorded an assist in all 28. He has scoredat least one goal in every game since the NCAA Tournament win over JohnsHopkins last season (14 straight games).

Virginia Wins Second Consecutive ACC Crown

Top-seed Virginia topped Maryland 11-7 nine days ago in the finals of theACC Tournament to claim its second consecutive ACC title. The title isVirginia’s 14th overall and third since the conference moved to atournament championship format in 1989. Conor Gill was named the tournamentMVP as he scored one goal, Virginia’s eighth-the eventual game-winner-andassisted on four others for a game-high five points.

The Cavaliers held off a furious Maryland comeback in the second half asthe Terps rallied from an 8-2 deficit early in the second half to cut thescore to 8-7, 55 seconds into the fourth quarter on Matt Urlock’s secondgoal of the game. Freshman A.J. Shannon bumped UVa’s lead to two goals bytaking a feed from Gill in front and firing a shot past goalie Pat McGinniswith just over five minutes to play. Jay Jalbert added his second goal ofthe game a short time later, while long stick middie Peter Ragosa closedout the scoring with a fast break goal with 1:23 left.

Virginia wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard as Jay Jalbertscored an extra-man goal 2:12 into the game. Maryland’s Nate Watkins tiedthe game at 1-1 on his first goal of the season with 11:53 left in thefirst, but goals by Drew McKnight and David Bruce just 36 seconds apartgave UVa a 3-1. The first quarter ended with UVa ahead 4-2.

The Cavaliers shut out Maryland in the second quarter, while getting twogoals from Ian Shure and one from Shannon to take a 7-2 lead to the lockerroom at halftime.

Gill upped the lead to 8-2 early in the third quarter with his only goal ofthe afternoon on a fast break.

Down by six, Maryland answered Gill’s goal a short time later. Neither teamscored for almost seven minutes before the Terps erupted for three goals inthe last 3:43 of the third quarter to trim UVa’s lead to 8-6.

Faceoff specialists Jason Hard and David Jenkins were outstanding inhelping Virginia gain possession which became especially important in thesecond half as the Cavaliers had to hold off an inspired Maryland comeback.

Hard won 10 of 12 draws in the game, while Jenkins claimed seven of 10. Inthe second half, they were even more impressive, winning all 11 faceoffs.

Jenkins also paced the Cavaliers with 13 ground balls, tying his seasonhigh.

Shure Propels Virginia into ACC Finals

Sophomore attackman Ian Shure scored the game-winning goal-his career-highfourth of the game-with 11 seconds left in the second overtime to giveVirginia a thrilling 17-16 comeback win over North Carolina 11 days ago inthe longest ACC Tournament game ever. The game, which was just the secondovertime game in ACC Tournament history, also featured the most goals everin a conference tournament game (33), breaking the record of 32 set byVirginia (19) and Duke (13) in 1994.

Virginia rallied with six of the game’s final seven goals after fallingbehind 15-11 as UNC’s Joel Miller scored his second goal of the game with14:47 left in the fourth quarter. Shure scored the game’s next two goals at12:21 and 11:36 to draw Virginia within two at 15-13. North Carolinamidfielder Austin Garrison scored his career-best fifth goal of the game togive the Tar Heels a 16-13 lead with 7:34 left in regulation.

The Cavaliers came back with vengeance as they shut down the Carolinaoffense, which registered its highest offensive output of the season with16 goals. Virginia scored three goals in a span of just under two minuteson goals by Conor Gill, Jay Jalbert and Jason Hard’s game-tying goal with2:35 left in the fourth quarter. The Cavaliers forced overtime by giving upjust one goal in the game’s final 22 minutes.

The Cavaliers had two extra-man opportunities in the first overtime periodbut were turned back by goalie Kris Blindenbacher’s two saves.

The Tar Heels had a chance to win in overtime but Jeff Sonke’s game-winningbid was blocked out front by defenseman Doug Worthen.

North Carolina had another attempt at a win a short time later, but RyanCurtis knocked the ball out of Chase Martin’s stick in front of the UVagoal. Mark Koontz scooped up the loose ball and raced down field. He hitShure just past midfield with a fine pass. Shure raced uncontested towardthe Carolina goal and got past the one defender in his way. Having beatenthe defender Shure managed to sneak an off-balance shot past Blindenbacherfor the winner.

Cavaliers Claim 14th ACC Title

The Cavaliers won the ACC Tournament recently to claim their secondconsecutive ACC championship and the 14th overall. This season’s titlemarks the first time since 1983-85 (when the champion was determinedthrough regular season play) that they have won back-to-back championships.

Virginia’s title this season makes the Cavaliers the first team since NorthCarolina in the early ’90s to win consecutive ACC championships. The TarHeels won the first six ACC Tournaments from 1989-94, but the champion hadalternated between the four ACC schools every year until this season.

Five Cavaliers Named All-ACC

Five Cavaliers were named to the 2000 All-ACC squad, the largest contingentof Wahoos since 1997, in voting by the league’s head coaches. Two Cavaliersare repeaters from last season-Ryan Curtis and Jay Jalbert-while ConorGill, Mark Koontz and Drew McKnight were selected for the first time.

Gill and McKnight give UVa two All-ACC attackmen for the first time since1997, when Doug Knight and Michael Watson were selected.

Jalbert’s selection marks UVa’s first two-timer in the midfield since AndyKraus in 1988-89.

Known for their offensive prowess, it’s not unusual to see several Cavalierattackmen or midfielders selected. But this season the ACC coaches haveproperly rewarded the UVa defense for its outstanding play in 2000 with theselection of Curtis and Koontz. This marks the first time since 1991(George Glyphis and Mike Schattner) that two Cavalier defensemen were namedAll-ACC. Curtis joins Tommy Smith (1996-97) as the only two-time All-ACCdefensemen under Dom Starsia, while Koontz is UVa’s first sophomoredefenseman named to the all-league team since Scott Lind in 1984.Gill and Koontz are the only sophomores named to this season’s All-ACC team.

UVa Remains #1 in the Polls

This is the first time since 1980 that Virginia has been the nation’stop-ranked team this late in the season. The Cavaliers began the seasonatop the polls, but lost their opener to Syracuse and dropped from the topspot. They moved back into the #1 spot following Syracuse’s loss to Cornellon April 11.

The last time UVa was ranked #1 anytime prior to this year was for severalweeks early in the 1996 season.

Virginia’s week-by-week rankings are listed below.

STX/USILA Inside Lacrosse Baltimore Sun
Preseason 1 1 1
March 6 3 3 2
March 13 2 2 2
March 20 2 2 2
March 27 2 2 2
April 3 2 2 2
April 10 2 2 2
April 17 1 1 1
April 24 1 1 1
May 1 1 1 1

McKnight Bears Down on “90-90”

Drew McKnight has been a remarkably consistent scorer throughout hiscareer. Prior to this season he scored between 19 and 25 goals and assistedon between 20 and 24 more goals.

This season, however, McKnight’s scoring has exploded. He is among thenational and ACC leaders in scoring, averaging 4.00 points per game (48points). He is also among the leaders in goals (2.17 gpg) and assists (1.83apg).

McKnight has scored a career-high 26 goals and added 22 assists for 48total points (also a career best). Barring something unexpected should alsosurpass his career high of 24 assists (needs three to break).

For his career he has recorded 92 goals and 88 assists and is bidding tobecome only the fourth player in school history with at least 90 goals and90 assists.

The members of the “90-90” club are listed (chronologically) below.McKnight’s place on UVa’s goals, assists and points lists is listed on pagefour.

Who? Goals Assists
Tom Duquette 107 92
Kevin Pehlke 138 101
Michael Watson 142 98
Drew McKnight 92 88

Jenkins Named National Player of the Week

Midfielder David Jenkins was named the Warrior/Inside Lacrosse Men’sDivision I Player of the Week for his performance in leading the Cavaliersto the Atlantic Coast Conference championship two weekends ago.

The junior from Dedham, Mass., made a huge impact as UVa defeated NorthCarolina and Maryland en route to a second straight league championship.In Friday’s 17-16 double overtime semifinal win over North Carolina,Jenkins won 14 of 19 faceoffs, grabbed 13 ground balls and scored twice. Inthe final, an 11-7 win over Maryland, Jenkins won seven of 10 faceoffs andscooped up 13 ground balls. He and teammate Jason Hard combined to win all11 faceoffs in the second half as the Cavaliers held off a Terrapin rally.

The 13 ground balls represent a season high for the Cavaliers this spring.Jenkins has won 61.1 percent of his faceoffs this season (80 of 131), whilescoring five goals and assisting on two others. His 69 ground balls trailHard by four for the team lead.

Hard, Jenkins Are Unsung Heroes

Faceoff specialists Jason Hard and David Jenkins don’t get a lot of theattention that some of their teammates get, but their play was perhaps theprimary reason Virginia won the ACC Tournament recently.

In the wins over North Carolina and Maryland, the duo combined to win 41 of59 faceoffs. They also added five goals, including two by both in thenarrow win over North Carolina in the semifinals.

Their faceoff prowess was exceptional down the stretch in the fourthquarter against North Carolina. Trailing 15-11 early in the fourth, theyproceeded to win five of the next six faceoffs to get the possessions theyneeded to whittle away at the lead. The Cavaliers scored the final threegoals of regulation, including two shortly after faceoffs, to forceovertime.

Their performance in the finals against Maryland was just as important asit was against North Carolina two days before. They won 17 of 22 faceoffsvs. the Terps, including all 11 in the second half.Virginia jumped to an 8-2 lead early in the third quarter before Marylandroared back with five unanswered goals to cut the lead to one.

The importance of winning faceoffs paid off for the Cavaliers as theyscored the game’s final three goals to pull out the win.

Hard scored three goals in the tournament and won two-thirds of hisfaceoffs (20 of 30), while Jenkins snatched 26 ground balls (13 each game)and won 72.4 percent (21 of 29) of his draws.

Hard has scored 14 goals (by far a career high), while winning 63.9 percentof his faceoffs this season. His winning percentage is also a career bestat the moment.

Hard’s 14 goals are the most by UVa’s primary faceoff man since David Wrenalso scored 14 times in 1996.

Jenkins has won 61.1 percent of his draws, while chipping in with five goals.

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