SYRACUSE, N.Y. –The 5-seed Virginia field hockey team (11-7) opened the 2021 ACC Field Hockey Championship with a 2-0 victory against 4-seed Boston College (12-6) on Thursday (Nov. 4) in a quarterfinal game played at J.S. Coyne Stadium in Syracuse, N.Y.
Virginia advances to play top-seeded Louisville (16-2) on Friday (Nov. 5) in the semifinals. That game will begin at 1 p.m.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The start of the game was delayed 1:20 after a freak pop-up storm blanked the field in snow and hail. With temperatures in the low 40’s when it began, the game itself was played under clear skies.
Sophomore Laura Janssen scored what would be the game-winning goal 11:27 into the contest. Janssen was wide open in front of the net when she received a pass from junior Danielle Husar. Janssen took on the goalie one-on-one, knocking her shot past the keeper and into the corner of the net.
Grad student Rachel Robinson doubled the Cavalier advantage with 7:11 remaining in the first half. Senior Amber Ezechiels took a hard shot from the top of the circle on a penalty corner, but her attempt was saved. Robinson picked up the ball off the rebound and worked to get it past the outstretched goalie and into the net.
The Eagles’ best chance of scoring came two minutes later when they were awarded a penalty stroke. Sky Caron took the attempt, which was saved by freshman goalie Tyler Kennedy.
Boston College stepped up their attack after halftime, taking three shots to the Cavaliers’ one in the third quarter. The Eagles added an extra attacker in the final minutes of the game, pulling their goalie with 3:36 remaining. They earned a penalty corner with 1:45 remaining, but the attempt went wide. The Cavalier defense held on for the shutout.
- Shots were knotted at eight apiece, but UVA held a 7-3 edge on shots on goal
- Tyler Kennedy had seven saves, picking up her second shutout of the season
- BC’s goalkeeper Jonna Kennedy made five saves
- Laura Janssen’s goal was her fifth of the season
- Rachel Robinson’s goal was her second of the season
- Virginia finished the season tied for fourth in the conference, but was the No. 5 seed in the ACC Championship by virtue of a tiebreaker with Boston College. BC was the No. 4 seed
- UVA has made the semifinals each of the last seven years, including 2017 when the team was the tournament’s No. 1 seed
- Virginia is looking for its second ACC title. The team won its first championship in 2016. That year, UVA was the six seed in the tournament, becoming the lowest-ever seed to win the ACC Field Hockey Championship
- Louisville won the regular-season meeting at Louisville 1-0 (Sept. 17)
FROM HEAD COACH MICHELE MADISON
“We’re very happy to be advancing to the semifinals tomorrow. We started the game well. I thought that mattered, how we started. We were able to maintain that intensity. Of course, you’re not going to keep a team as good as Boston College out of opportunities, but we did what we had to do. Now we have to go back to the hotel, get rested, recover and make a new game plan for Louisville.”
Highlights from the ACC Quarterfinal win against Boston College