CARY, N.C. –The Cavaliers’ stay at the ACC Championships ended in the semifinals on Friday night as No. 11 Virginia (15-4-0) fell to No. 7 Florida State (14-4-2) by a score of 3-1 at WakeMed Soccer Park.

Virginia took the early lead on a goal right before the end of the first-half from Zoe Morse (East Lansing, Mich.), but Florida State answered with three goals in the second half to secure the win.

“The better team won tonight and nobody can dispute that,” said Virginia head coach Steve Swanson. “Florida State was better than us in every phase, including the coaching. We’ve got to bounce back from this. It was disappointing from our end because we didn’t play very well as a team and credit Florida State for that.”

The Cavaliers got a couple of opportunities off free kicks following fouls by the Seminoles just outside the box, but Virginia was unable to convert. Two other strikes in the first 24 minutes presented solid opportunities for the Hoos with Montana Sutton (Bedminster, N.J.) sending one high from 15 yards out and Alexa Spaanstra (Brighton, Mich.) just missing wide on a shot from just outside the top of the box. 

Morse got the Cavaliers on the board in the 43rd minute scoring from inside the six-yard box to put Virginia on top 1-0. Ayan Adu (Ashburn, Va.) took a shot from distance, threading the defense with a rocket on frame that was saved by Florida State keeper Brooke Bollinger. Bollinger was unable to corral the ball, however, and it skipped out to Morse making a run on the goal and the junior defender buried the shot past the near right post.

At the half, the Cavaliers held the 1-0 lead with a 7-to-3 edge in shots. The momentum would shift in the second half, however, as the Seminoles would grab control of the game. 

Florida State found the equalizer from Deyna Castellanos in the 50th minute off a counter. Castellanos received the pass in stride from Kristina Lynch and took her shot near the center of the top of the box to pull the Seminoles even at 1-1.

The Seminoles extended the lead in the 66th minute when Castellanos hit her second goal of the night. A cross by Florida State was deflected by Ivory in the box, who went down in a collision. The ball skipped out to Castellanos near the penalty spot and she sent it back in for the score and the 2-1 lead.

Another counter opportunity saw the Seminoles extend the lead to 3-1 as Kaycie Tillman chipped the ball over the defense in to Kristen McFarland who got in behind the Cavaliers with her run. The resulting one-on-one chance went the way of the McFarland as she was able to slip the ball past Ivory and in past the far right post.
Virginia will now await the announcement of the NCAA Tournament bracket on Monday afternoon.

Of Note:

  • Junior Zoe Morse notched her first goal of the season at the 43rd minute mark
  • The assist from Adu on the Morse goal was her third of the season
  • With her goal, Morse became the 16th different goal scorer for Virginia this season
  • It’s the first loss after leading for Virginia since a 2-1 loss to North Carolina (9/24/17)
  • It’s only the second time this season UVA has surrendered more than one goal