BLACKSBURG, Va. — On the back of Virginia freshman Stephen Annor’s second brace of the season, the Virginia men’s soccer team (8-3-3, 3-2-1 ACC) rolled to an impressive road victory against Virginia Tech (4-7-4, 2-5-1 ACC) by a score of 3-0 to secure its first win away from home in 2023 on Friday night (Oct. 20) at Thompson Field.

Goals (Assists):
3’ Virginia — Annor
22’ Virginia — Mangarov
59’ Virginia — Annor

How it Happened:

  • Stephen Annor wasted no time scoring the opening goal. With just two minutes played, Annor took the ball off the feet of the Virginia Tech center back and with one touch chipped his attempt over the goalkeeper to give Virginia a 1-0 advantage.
  • In the 23rd minute of play, Umberto Pelà was brought down on the edge of the penalty area winning a free kick for the Cavaliers. Danny Mangarov went straight for goal from the free kick firing it straight through the wall and into the back of the net for 2-0.
  • Annor made it a brace in the 59th minute with a clever flick past the deepest defender to put himself through on goal. With a calm finish he put the finishing touch on an emphatic 3-0 win for the Cavaliers.

From Head Coach George Gelnovatch:
“We got off to a really good start. What an incredible goal Stephen scored. It was an enthusiastic start that allowed us to score and getting that early goal really helped and getting that second goal before halftime really helped as well…The focus moving forward is on Tuesday. We have some momentum now and we are playing well with our last two games at home I couldn’t ask for more.

Additional Notes:

  • Stephen scored his ninth and tenth goals of the season and his fifth game-winner
  • Annor scored within the first five minutes of the game for the second time this season—his goal marked the quickest UVA has scored this season
  • Annor’s pair of goals marks his second brace of the season after scoring twice in a 3-1 win over NC State (9/16)
  • Annor has scored in five of his last six games
  • Annor becomes the first Cavalier to hit double-digit goals since Daryl Dike accomplished the feat in 2019—he is now six goals away from the freshman record set by Alecko Eskandarian (2000) and George Gelnovatch (1983)
  • Joey Batrouni kept his third clean sheet as a Cavalier while making four saves
  • In his last six starts, Batrouni has conceded just three goals while keeping three clean sheets 

With the Win:

  • Virginia improves to 8-3-3 and extends its unbeaten run to six games
  • The win marks the second consecutive victory over Virginia Tech
  • Virginia wins its second straight over an ACC opponent
  • The win marks the first road victory of the season
  • Virginia logged its first 3-0 road victory over Virginia Tech since 1998

The Smithfield Commonwealth Clash
The Smithfield Commonwealth Clash, originally called the Commonwealth Challenge (2005-2007), has been a part of the UVA-Virginia Tech rivalry since 2014. It is an all-sports, points-based program with the Commonwealth Clash trophy presented to the winning school each year for its dominance in head-to-head competitions. With the win, Virginia increases its lead in the competition to 2-0.

NCAA Committee Announces Top-16
With three weeks remaining before selection Monday, the NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Committee announced its top-16 ranking during a reveal at halftime of the Wake Forest and Notre Dame game on ACC Network. The top-16 correspond to the teams that are seeded in the 48-team NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer bracket.

Using results through Oct. 19, Virginia checked in at No. 15 on the list. The ranking is based on the criteria used to select and seed the 48 teams for the Division I Men’s Soccer Championship and in no particular order includes strength of schedule, Rating Percentage Index, head-to-head competition, results versus common opponents, strength and results against non-conference opponents, late season performance in the last eight games and strength and results against conference opponents.

Up Next:
Virginia will close out the regular season with a two game homestand. The Cavaliers will host High Point on Tuesday (Oct. 24) before closing out the regular season with No. 11 North Carolina on Friday (Oct. 27).

Highlights from No. 18 Virginia's 3-0 win over Virginia Tech 10.20.23