No. 6 Virginia Field Hockey Hosts Liberty on Friday
|Liberty (9-5, 3-0 NorPac) at No. 6 Virginia (11-4, 4-1 ACC)|
|Date and Time||Friday, Oct. 17, 6 p.m.|
|Location||Charlottesville, Va. | Turf Field|
|Additional Information||2014 Season Stats | Season Preview | 2014 Record Book (.pdf)|
|Social Media||Twitter | Facebook | Instagram|
Oct. 16, 2014
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The No. 6 Virginia field hockey team (11-4, 4-1 ACC) closes out its 2014 slate of regular-season home games by hosting Liberty (9-5, 3-0 NorPac) on Friday, Oct. 17 at 6 p.m. and No. 19 Old Dominion (7-6, 1-1 Big East) on Sunday, Oct. 19 at 1 p.m. at Turf Field. Admission is free for all of Virginia’s regular-season home field hockey games.
This weekend’s contests mark the fourth and fifth ranked ACC opponents Liberty will face this season. The Lady Flames are 2-1 against the ACC in 2014, defeating both No. 12 Wake Forest and No. 11 Louisville by a score of 2-1, before dropping the 3-2 contest at No. 9 Duke on Sunday. Liberty’s comeback fell short against the Blue Devils, as the Lady Flames surrendered a goal with 23 seconds left on the clock in regulation, falling 3-2.
Junior forward Sarah Gipe had four goals and assisting in two goals last weekend. Gipe leads the team with 28 points and 12 goals. This will be the second-ever meeting between the two schools. UVa earned a 2-0 victory last season in Lynchburg.
Last Friday, Old Dominion suffered its biggest loss of the season, falling 4-0 to Big East-rival, No. 6 Connecticut, the third time this season that ODU was shut out in a game. The team bounced back and picked up a 3-1 win over the Quinnipiac Bobcats, a team that made it to the 2013 NCAA Tournament. Junior midfielder Sarah Breen led the Lady Monarchs’ offense with two goals to bring her season total to seven.
The Lady Monarchs hold a 33-15 edge in the all-time series that started in 1976. The Cavaliers are currently on a two-game winning streak over the Lady Monarchs with Old Dominion’s last win coming in 2011.
The Cavaliers, who fell from No. 3 to No. 6 in this week’s NFHCA poll after last Sunday’s 4-3 loss to No. 17 Wake Forest, remain in first place in the ACC with four teams (Louisville, North Carolina, Duke and Wake Forest) each having two losses in conference play. Virginia’s final ACC contest will be Friday, Oct. 24 when the Cavaliers play at Boston College.
Freshman midfielder Tara Vittese (Cherry Hill, N.J.) scored both of Virginia’s goals in last Friday night’s victory at Richmond and added another goal and an assist in the loss to Wake Forest. Vittese has a conference-best 41 points this season on 13 goals and 15 assists. The second highest point tally is Syracuse’s Lieke Visser with 28 points. Vittese is fifth in the nation, averaging 2.73 points per game. Her 1.00 assists-per-game average is second in the ACC and fifth in the NCAA, while her 0.87 goals per game also ranks second in the ACC and rates 17th in the NCAA. Her 15 assists are the most by a Cavalier freshman in program history with her 41 points ranking fifth on the all-time list for first-years. Meredith Thorpe owns the freshman points record, contributing 52 in her 1995 rookie campaign.
Sophomore striker Caleigh Foust (Bryn Mawr, Pa.), who finished the 2013 season ranked second on the team with 24 points, has already surpassed her rookie output, contributing 25 points so far this season with 11 goals and three assists. Fellow sophomore striker Riley Tata (Virginia Beach, Va.) has matched her 2013 points total with 10 goals and two assists for 22 points. Sophomore midfielder Lucy Hyams (Whitstable, England), the 2013 ACC Rookie of the Year, has scored eight goals this season after netting five last season.
Senior goalkeeper Jenny Johnstone (Paisley, Scotland) has moved into sixth place in the Cavalier record book in career saves with 320 after passing Becky Worthington’s (1997-2000) career tally of 311. Johnstone began the season with 258 saves, which ranked 10th on the career list. Donna DeNoble (1984-87) is currently in fifth place with 425 career saves.
Johnstone will be one of five players honored postgame on Sunday in the annual Senior Day ceremony. Senior midfielders Kelsey LeBlanc (Haverford, Pa.) and Jess Orrett (Wells, England) as well as senior back Maddie DeCerbo (Surf City, N.J.) and junior Tollie Bell (Norfolk, Va.), who has decided to forgo her final season of eligibility, and Johnstone will be recognized in a brief on-field ceremony immediately following the conclusion of the Old Dominion game.