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Aug. 19, 2006

The Virginia defense held the American Eagles to one short and one shot in the first half while at the other end of the field three different Cavaliers scored as Virginia defeated American 3-2 today (Aug. 19) in an exhibition match held at University Hall Turf Field. After the Eagles jumped on the board first, Virginia responded with three consecutive goals to take a lead they would relinquish, and the Hoos held on for the win. Katherine Blair played all seventy minutes in the cage and made six stops.

“It was nice to give a number of players the chance to play in this setting,” said Virginia head coach Michele Madison. “Our three forwards utilized the space today and were able to convert, and we were able to give a number of players the opportunity to be in one of the three high spots.”

Virginia pushed the pace early on and drew a short corner just 30 seconds into the contest as Abby Taylor attacked the circle from the top and was fouled. Two Cavalier shots were knocked aside by Allison Fayfich, the AU keeper to keep the game scoreless. Aly Curmaci, Virginia’s starting center forward, intercepted a 16-yard hit minutes later and took it to the endline where she sent the ball across the mouth of the goal after drawing out the keeper. Link was able to control the ball in the D and drew Virginia’s second corner of the game. A Biffy Cornelison shot was saved on the line by Denise Infante, preserving the scoreless tie.

Despite the early pressure by the Cavaliers, it was American who got on the board first as the Eagles drew a short. The direct strike by Infante was tipped into the cage by Irene Schickhardt at 6:42, giving AU the 1-0 lead.

Virginia answered right back as left back Katherine Bounds intercepted a ball at midfield and the Cavaliers worked the ball around to the other side where right forward Mia Link attacked the D and drew a short corner. A direct strike by center midfielder Inge Kaars Sijpesteijn off an injection by Cornelison and a stick stop by Abby Taylor found the boards and the Cavaliers tied the game 1-1 at 9:04.

Ten minutes later American broke out for a 1v1 but Lauren Elstein was there to break up the opportunity at the 25, keeping the teams tied at 1-1.

A Traci Ragukas interception was passed to Link, who entered the circle before dishing the ball off to Liz Hiltz, who scored at 24:09 to put the Cavaliers ahead 2-1. Just over a minute later Sara Confer blocked up a free hit and took it into the circle before feeding Alyssa Curmaci, who slotted the ball to the boards for a 3-1 lead at 25:42. The teams entered halftime with Virginia leading 3-1.

In the second half the Eagles drew four short corners in the opening ten minutes but were unable to hit the boards. They took their fifth short corner of the half at 40:30 and Blair made her second save of the half to keep the Cavalier lead at two. American was finally able to get back on the board when after a sustained attack they drew a short corner. On the play Annie De Wiljes slipped her stick stop over to Schickhardt, who swept the ball to the boards for a goal at 55:07, pulling the Eagles within one.

A chip shot at close range was saved by Blair but the American attack kept pressing and drew their seventh corner of the half where another left variation was saved by Blair, but the Cavaliers surrendered a second corner. The straight strike was saved by Blair and the rebound shot was sent wide as Virginia maintained their 3-2 lead.

The Cavaliers earned a corner with under five minutes to play as Liz Hiltz attacked up the left and worked a combination with Ragukas and Curmaci, but three consecutive shots were saved by Fayfich.

“It was nice to play a game like this as part of our preseason,” said Virginia captain Mia Link. “It gives the staff a gauge of where we are as we continue to prepare for the upcoming games.”

Scoring:AU - Schickardt, pc, 6:42 (D. Infante)UVA - Sijpesteijn, pc, 9:04 (Cornelison, Taylor)UVA - Hiltz, fg, 24:09 (Link)UVA - Curmaci, fg, 25:42 (Confer)AU - Schickhardt, pc, 55:07 (De Wiljes)

Short corners:AU: 1-8=9UVA: 3-1=4

Shots:AU: 1-12=13UVA: 8-6=14

Saves:AU: Fayfich, 7; D. Infante, 1 (DS)UVA: Blair, 7

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