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Virginia tries to tame Tigers

Team eyes first top-20 road win this season

The No. 10 Virginia women's lacrosse team faces its sixth top-20 opponent of the young season tomorrow when it goes on the road to battle No. 16 Princeton.

The Cavaliers (4-3, 0-2 ACC) have endured an arduous schedule so far, with five of their seven games pitting them against ranked teams. Though Princeton (2-2, 0-1 Ivy) is not a conference opponent or a threat to Virginia's regional superiority, the matchup between the two squads has turned into a rivalry of sorts during the last two decades.

"The Princeton-Virginia game is always a good one," Virginia coach Julie Myers said. "It's always well-played... it's been a national championship matchup many times in years past, so it's always a fun rivalry to go up and play in."

The Cavaliers and Tigers each have three national championships. In 1993, Virginia beat Princeton 8-6 in overtime. The teams met in the NCAA finals again in 2003 with Princeton coming out on top, 8-7. The following year, Virginia bested Princeton 10-4 to take the title.

There is no national title up for grabs tomorrow, but both teams need a victory.

Virginia had lost three in a row to ranked teams before beating unranked William & Mary Wednesday. Princeton has played only four games but lost two home contests back-to-back to Rutgers and No. 5 Duke. Both defeats were close, however, as Rutgers prevailed 11-10 in double overtime and Duke pulled out a 12-9 win.

"We are [both] in a position where we need to win, and now is the time," Myers said. "We are going to have our hands full for sure."

If Virginia comes out on top tomorrow, it will be the team's first victory against a ranked team on the road this season following tough losses at Maryland and Penn State. Virginia fell behind 7-2 against the Terps before a late rally came up short, resulting in a 12-9 loss. The next game, against the Nittany Lions, followed a similar script as the Cavaliers trailed 10-2 early in the second half and ultimately dropped a 14-7 decision.

"It's harder to win on the road... but we'll be OK," senior attacker Josie Owen said. "Having one road trip under our belts, and especially a long one, I think will end up helping in the long run." Owen's four-goal, three-assist outing at Maryland led the team.

Virginia could receive a big lift from a win at Princeton, since it plays four of its next five games within the friendly confines of Kl