CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Despite controlling possession while outshooting their opponents, the Virginia men’s soccer team fell to Xavier in its season opener by a score of 1-0 on Thursday night (Aug. 25) at Klöckner Stadium.
86’ – Xavier: Brandon Osterholt (Kendall Allen)
HOW IT HAPPENED:
After a fast start, Virginia created one of its best chances of the match following a short corner taken by Paul Wiese. Wiese’s cross zipped into the area and found the head of Moritz Kappelsberger whose attempt was stopped by the Xavier goalkeeper. The Cavaliers outshot their opponents 8-0 if the first half.
Virginia picked up where it left off in the second half, again controlling the pace of play taking another 11 shots. Two crucial opportunities opened up for the Cavaliers around the one-hour mark as Leo Afonso put an attempt just wide of the post while Reese Miller’s breakaway opportunity was stopped by the Xavier goalkeeper.
In the 86th minute of play, Xavier earned a corner kick. The ball fell to the feet of Xavier’s Kendall Allen whose attempt was saved by a diving Holden Brown in goal. However, the rebound was put home by Brandon Osterholt on just the third shot of the game for the Musketeers.
- The loss snaps an eight-game win streak on opening night for the Cavaliers
- Virginia falls to 20-7 in season openers under head coach George Gelnovatch
- Xavier claims the first win of the series after the two teams recorded 1-1 draws in both of their two prior meetings
- Eight Cavaliers made their Virginia debut including Albin Gashi, Moritz Kappelsberger, Reese Miller and Umberto Pelà who all started the match
- The Cavaliers possessed the ball for 59-percent of the match
- Virginia outshot Xavier by a margin of 19-3
- The Cavaliers placed eight of their shots on target
- Leo Afonso led Virginia with four shots
FROM HEAD COACH GEORGE GELNOVATCH
“It’s frustrating, but it’s early in the season and we are coming at it from the standpoint of not getting too high or too low. However, we understand the dynamic of coming off last year and what we want to do and so we’re upset. Overall, I think we put a lot of time into recruiting this team. I think the talent is good. And we could see that in our exhibition games.”
Virginia will return to action when they host Rider on Monday, August 29. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.