CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – For the fourth time in the last five weeks, No. 3 Virginia (8-2, 2-1 ACC) will challenge a top-5 opponent in No. 2 Duke (10-2, 3-1) on Saturday (April 15) in Durham, North Carolina. Opening faceoff from Koskinen Stadium is set for noon as Chris Cotter (play-by-play) and Paul Carcaterra (analyst) will have the call on ACC Network.
The two teams previously went head-to-head at Klöckner Stadium on March 31 with Blue Devils getting the best of UVA, 16-14.
BY THE NUMBERS
3 – With 141 career goals, Payton Cormier needs just three goals to move up to No. 2 on UVA’s all-time career goals list, which would surpass Michael Watson (142) and Matt Moore (143).
7 – Virginia’s seven NCAA titles are third most by any program since the NCAA Tournament’s inception in 1971.
9 – The Cavaliers returned nine starters this season. UVA’s only departure from last year’s starting lineup was attackman Matt Moore, who was drafted No. 4 overall in the 2022 PLL Draft by the Archers.
LAST TIME OUT
- In wet and rainy conditions, the Cavaliers won their fourth game of the season away from Klöckner Stadium last Friday (April 7) at then-No. 10 North Carolina by a final score of 19-12.
- The win marked UVA’s fifth over the Tar Heels in the series and fifth consecutive at Dorrance Field. UNC entered the game as the nation’s No. 3 scoring defense. UVA’s 19 goals marked the most by a UNC opponent in 2023.
- The Cavaliers dominated the ground ball game in Chapel Hill, 42-28.
- Payton Cormier scored a game-high five goals on eight shots and added two assists. Petey LaSalla (17-33 FO) finished at least 50 percent at the faceoff X for the ninth time this season and his pair of goals marked his first points in the Cavaliers’ last six games. Grayson Sallade recorded four ground balls, two caused turnovers and one assist in the win.
- Virginia leads the all-time series over the Blue Devils, 50-37, but Duke leads the series in Durham, 22-19, and has won 14 of the last 15 meetings overall.
- The last time the two teams met was earlier this season on March 31, when Duke’s Brennan O’Neill (6g, 3a) tied his career high of nine points in the Blue Devils’ 16-14 victory at Klöckner Stadium over then-No. 1 Virginia.
- Ian Laviano’s double overtime game-winning goal in the 2019 NCAA Tournament semifinals at Lincoln Financial Field marked the last time that UVA defeated the Blue Devils.
MORE ON THE DUKE SREIES
- The Cavaliers have dropped their last 17 regular-season meetings against Duke. UVA’s last regular-season win over the Blue Devils was a 13-4 victory on April 17, 2004.
- Virginia’s last win in Durham was an 11-8 victory on April 12, 2003.
- UVA and Duke have different all-time series records due to the fluidity of when a program was a “varsity” sport up until the conclusion of WWII. UVA lists its “varsity only” record against Duke above.
VIRGINIA IN THE POLLS
- At No. 3 in this week’s USILA Coaches poll, Virginia has been ranked in the top 5 of the poll in 323 weeks all-time, including all 10 polls in 2023.
- UVA has been ranked No. 1 in the nation in 70 all-time polls.
- Virginia has been ranked in 514 polls all-time.
- The USILA Poll began in 1973 and there have been 535 polls all-time.
- From 1973-89, the USILA ranked the top-15 teams before expanding the poll to 20 teams for the 1990 season.
CAVALIERS AMONG THE NATION’S STATISTICAL LEADERS
- Virginia currently leads the nation in assists (12.20/gm), ground balls (41.40/gm), points (30.40/gm), scoring offense (18.20/gm) and shot percentage (.388). The Cavaliers are third in man-up offense (.607), fourth in scoring margin (5.70/gm), fifth in win percentage (.800), ninth in clearing percentage (.906) and 10th in turnovers (14.90/gm).
- Connor Shellenberger leads the nation in assists (3.78/gm) and is fifth in points (5.33/gm). Payton Cormier is second in goals (4.25/gm), fourth in points (5.50/gm) and eighth in shot percentage (.534). Xander Dickson is third in goals (3.90/gm), 15th in points (4.90/gm) and second in shot percentage (.534). Cade Saustad is eighth in caused turnovers (2.00/gm) and Petey LaSalla is seventh in ground balls (9.00/gm).
- UVA is the only program in the nation with three players (Shellenberger, Cormier & Dickson) averaging at least 4.90 points per game.
VIRGINIA IS A GROUND BALL MACHINE
- Since 2009, UVA has finished in the top 3 nationally in ground balls per game in all but one season, and led the nation in ground balls per game eight times.
- UVA is the only school to finish in the top 5 nationally in ground balls per game 13 times over the last 14 seasons.
- The only school in 2016 to finish with more ground balls per game was UVA head coach Lars Tiffany’s Brown team.
- Virginia has led the ground ball battle in all 10 games this year and its season high in ground balls is 53 vs. Richmond (March 4).
- Newcomer Thomas McConvey, a transfer in the midfield from the University of Vermont, is currently riding a 62-game point streak, which began on Feb. 1, 2019.
- McConvey has registered at least one point in every game of his career.
- His 62-game point streak leads the nation among all active players.
- During his streak, McConvey has amassed 147 goals and 63 assists.
- Also riding a substantial point streak is UVA attackman Payton Cormier, who has recorded at least one point in his last 37 games.
- Cormier’s 37-game point streak is currently the seventh longest in the nation. During his streak, which began on March 6, 2021, Cormier has registered 115 goals and 24 assists.
ON THE HORIZON
- The Cavaliers return to Klöckner Stadium next Saturday (April 22) to host Syracuse.
- Opening faceoff is set for 2 p.m. on ESPNU.