No. 23 Cavaliers Hand No. 2 Maryland Its First Loss, 2-1
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Will Bates’ goal in the 84th minute lifted the No. 23 Virginia men’s soccer team to a 2-1 triumph over No. 2 Maryland Friday evening in front of 2,898 spectators at Klöckner Stadium.
Virginia (7-4-0, 3-1-0 ACC) handed the Terrapins (11-1-1, 3-1-0) their first loss of the season and moved a tie with Maryland in the ACC standings with nine points, one shy of ACC leaders North Carolina and Duke; UVa still has a game in hand on the co-leaders.
Bates and freshman Ryan Zinkhan combined for each of the Cavaliers’ scores. Bates assisted on Zinkhan’s goal in the 51st minute, and Zinkhan’s touch pass led to Bates’ game-winning score, his team-leading 10th tally of the year.
“We’ve taken back some ground the last couple of weeks,” UVa head coach George Gelnovatch said. “We have worked back through some injuries and illness. Clemson last week was a good example of us getting on our way back and this game tonight demonstrated that we’re a pretty good team.”
Maryland out-shot the Cavaliers, 19-13, and held a 6-0 edge in corner kicks. UVa goalkeeper Spencer LaCivita made four saves, while Maryland goalkeeper Will Swaim was credited with one save.
The teams played a scoreless yet entertaining first half, as both squads had good scoring chances in back-and-forth action.
UVa capitalized quickly on its first scoring chance in the second half. In the 51st minute Bates slipped a through ball from just outside the top of the box, and Zinkhan got behind the defense and chipped the ball across the box to the far corner of the net for his second goal in as many games. Bates recorded his fourth assist on the play.
Maryland’s potent offense, which leads the nation in goals, finally struck for the equalizer 10 minutes later. Jordan Cyrus sent a ball into the UVa box, where Casey Townsend took the pass, turned and then fired to the far corner to beat LaCivita for his 12th score of the year.
After 23 minutes filled with great opportunities on both sides, the Cavaliers scored the eventual game-winning goal in the 84th minute. After the ball was played into the box, Zinkhan made a touch pass to Bates, who cranked a shot from just inside the top of the box and found the back of the net toward the upper 90.
“I was trying to play the ball after Zinkhan laid it off,” Bates said. “I just wanted to put something on frame and it worked out.”
The Terrapins hit the post with four shots in the game, while UVa’s Felipe Libreros rattled the crossbar with a shot in the 86th minute. Townsend took nine of the Terps’ 19 shots, while Bates recorded five shots to lead UVa.
Virginia returns home at 7 p.m. Tuesday (Oct. 11) when it entertains the Navy Midshipmen at Klöckner Stadium. UVa travels to Wake Forest Friday, Oct. 14, in its next ACC action.