Virginia tops Louisville, Rutgers on Foust's game-winning goals

Vittese sets up both deciding scores, records hat trick against Scarlet Knights

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Sophomore striker Caleigh Foust tallied the game-winning goal in both of the Cavaliers' weekend wins. 

Marshall Bronfin | Cavalier Daily

The Virginia field hockey team won its ACC opener Friday night, defeating Louisville 3-2 in double overtime.

Sophomore striker Caleigh Foust scored the game-winning goal off a pass from freshman midfielder Tara Vittese in the second minute of sudden-death second overtime, giving the No. 9 Cavaliers (5-2, 1-0 ACC) their third-straight victory.

Once Vittese got the ball, she immediately looked to set up Foust.

“I did a backdoor cut and was open,” Vitesse said. “Then I wanted to pass because Caleigh was wide open on goal. It ended up working out perfectly.”

Foust leads the team with six goals, two of which were scored in the win against the No. 11 Cardinals (4-1, 0-1 ACC). Vittese also scored her second goal of the season and added two assists to her team-leading seven in 2014.

The Cavaliers dominated possession throughout, outshooting the Cardinals 18-8.

“We worked on building the attack and creating the offensive power by getting into the circle,” Virginia coach Michele Madison said. “We knew Louisville's goalie was good, that she likes to come out and is really aggressive. We knew we had to go around her, rather than through her, and our team finally did that in the overtime.”

Louisville struck first with a goal by senior back Alyssa Voelmle at 5:25 off a penalty corner. Vittese responded quickly, however, with an unassisted goal at 7:52 to tie the game at 1-1.

The score remained knotted for most of the first half, despite Virginia’s possession dominance and multiple attacks. Foust finally broke through, scoring her fifth goal of the season three minutes before the break to put the Cavaliers up 2-1.

Virginia came out strong in the second half, with the offense again controlling much of the possession and outshooting the Cardinals 7-2, and the defense making a number of nice defensive stops. Senior goalkeeper Jenny Johnstone had five saves in the course of the game.

Louisville tied the game at 2-2 with a goal from junior midfielder Megan Anstotz off another penalty corner at 60:22.

Though Foust and sophomore midfielder Lucy Hyams came close to scoring several times in the last few minutes of the game, regulation ended with a score of 2-2 — forcing a 15-minute, sudden death, 7-v-7 overtime.

Though the first period of overtime saw significant exciting action as both the Cavaliers and the Cardinals made several strong offensive attacks, the score remained tied at 2-2. Hyams, Vittese and Faust all had close opportunities to score, and Johnstone was forced to make a save on a Louisville breakaway. Johnstone made three of her stops in the first overtime period.

Less than two minutes into the second extra session, Foust scored the game-winning goal off a fast break to improve Virginia’s overall record to 4-2 and its ACC record to 1-0.

"This is a huge win for us," Madison said. "Any ACC victory is huge and that first one is always the hardest to get. We knew we had to come out and play, not take a play off and play like a team. And that is what we did.”

The win gave the Cavaliers a 5-1 all-time record against Louisville, but Friday was their first time facing each other as conference opponents.

“It’s amazing,” Vittese said. “It’s our first ACC win and they’re coming into the ACC as first-timers this year. … They played really hard but we ended up coming out on top.”

The Cavaliers then looked to finish their four-game home stand on a positive note Sunday against Rutgers.

Virginia came into the day 0-2 against the Big Ten in 2014 but rallied to defeat the Scarlet Knights 4-3 in overtime. The Cavaliers delivered a strong offensive performance, outshooting Rutgers 34-11, with Vittese, Hyams and senior midfielder Jess Orrett looking particularly aggressive.

The overtime had the same outcome as Friday night’s extra period as Foust scored on an assist from Vittese to give the Cavaliers their fourth straight victory. Vittese scored all three goals in regulation for the Cavaliers, including two penalty strokes.

In the two games this weekend, Vittese scored four goals and had three assists, and Foust scored three goals, including the two game winners.

The Cavaliers will now have a well-earned break before facing No. 4 Duke in their second ACC conference game of the season this Friday at 6 p.m. in Durham, North Carolina.

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