Rachel Robinson scored for the goal for the Cavaliers in their 2-1 loss in the semifinals to Princeont

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – The No. 4 Virginia field hockey team (18-5, 4-2 ACC) had its season come to an end with a 2-1 loss to No. 9 Princeton (16-4, 7-0 Ivy) in the 2019 NCAA Field Hockey Championship semifinals on Friday (Nov. 22) at Wake Forest’s Kentner Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C.
Junior midfielder Rachel Robinson (Mount Joy, Pa.) scored the lone goal for the Cavaliers.
This was the fifth time in program history that the Cavaliers have advanced to the NCAA semifinals and the first time since 2010.
The Cavaliers struck early, with Robinson scoring on the first shot of the game by either team, converting a penalty corner 7:28 into the game. Virginia dominated possession in the first half, outshooting Princeton 6-2, but the Tigers made the most of their opportunities, tying the game with 2:38 remaining in the first half on a shot into the upper corner of the net by Ali McCarthy.
Princeton took a 2-1 lead with 4:50 remaining in the third period when Julianna Tornetta picked up a rebound and put it into the net. The Cavaliers’ attempt to rally was hampered when one of their players received a 10-minute yellow card 3:15 into the fourth quarter. Virginia went down another player eight minutes later when she also received a yellow card, giving Princeton a two-man advantage. UVA pulled its goalie with 2:53 remaining, evening the number of players on the field as the first card had expired. Virginia had a chance to score, earning a penalty corner with 11.8 seconds remaining in the game. Freshman Cato Geusgens (Wassenaar, Netherlands) got off two shots, both of which were blocked. Sophomore Amber Ezechiels (Niew-Vennep, Netherlands) corralled the final rebound and fired off a third shot, but the attempt went wide, ending the game.
“It was an amazing semifinal. I thought there was a lot of action. We had moments of domination and control of the game and we showed with their ability to dribble at a hundred miles an hour. I’m so proud of the team. I’m so proud of the seniors, the staff, everything and how they play every day. I knew they would show up and play with grit and grind and grind it out and it’s tough to play with one player down and even with two players down and we still had our opportunities to win the game.”
“I think that my whole experience here in four years has been amazing and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. It’s disappointing in the outcome today but I’m so excited that we were able to get here and that my team is still so young as we said and they are definitely going to come back next year even stronger. I’m looking forward to cheering them on.”


  • Robinson’s goal was her fifth of the season
  • Senior Anzel Viljoen (Matamata, New Zealand) and sophomore Annie McDonough (Kennett Square, Pa.) each had an assist
  • Viljoen ends the season with a team-high 26 points
  • Virginia held a 13-11 advantage in shots and a 9-6 edge in penalty corners
  • This is Virginia’s fifth trip to the NCAA semifinals after making back-to-back trips in 1997 and 1998 and again in 2009 and 2010. Virginia also advanced to the AIAW semifinals in 1978. Virginia has never advanced to the NCAA Championship final
  • This was the fourth-straight year that Princeton eliminated Virginia from the NCAA Championship, twice in the first round, including a double-overtime loss in 2017, and on a last-second goal in the 2016 quarterfinals. Virginia also lost 5-2 to Princeton in the 2012 NCAA quarterfinals
  • Princeton will face North Carolina in Sunday’s final. North Carolina downed Boston College, 6-2, in the first semifinal