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No. 10 women’s soccer closes out regular season with two road wins

The Cavaliers dominated Boston College and Syracuse in their final pair of matches

<p>The Cavaliers dominated their opponents in their final two matches, concluding the regular season with seven wins as they prepare for the ACC Tournament Nov. 10.&nbsp;</p>

The Cavaliers dominated their opponents in their final two matches, concluding the regular season with seven wins as they prepare for the ACC Tournament Nov. 10. 

No. 10 Virginia concluded its regular season with two matches against Boston College and Syracuse over the weekend. The Cavaliers (7-2-1, 5-2-1 ACC) took down the Eagles (1-6, 1-6 ACC) 2-1 Thursday before toppling the Orange (7-2-1, 4-2-1 ACC) 5-3 Sunday. Junior forward Rebecca Jarrett shined on the pitch with a goal in both matches. 

Game 1: Virginia 2, Boston College 1

Virginia improved its conference record as it came up with a 2-1 victory against Boston College at the Newton Soccer Complex Thursday. Goals from Jarrett and junior defender Claire Constant secured the road win as they scored within four minutes of each other in the second half. 

“It was a tough opponent and tough conditions today, which is what we expected so we are happy to come away with the result,” Coach Steve Swanson said. “I thought our second half was very good, but credit Boston College for not giving up and making it extremely challenging for us at the end of the game.”

The first half was a scoreless effort despite the Cavaliers’ 5-1 advantage in shots. Virginia maintained strong possession throughout the period, controlling the tempo and forcing four corner kicks. Senior defender Lizzy Sieracki offered the only challenge in the 23rd minute against Boston College sophomore goalkeeper Allie Augur.

In the second half the Cavaliers responded to an Eagles’ corner with a goal in the 65th minute. Senior midfielder Anna Sumpter initiated the play, leading junior midfielder Alexa Spaanstra with a header as she took possession and raced down the pitch. Jarrett made a run to the right of Spaanstra, picking up the pass as she traveled into the box. She aimed for the near post and took her shot from just outside the six, securing a 1-0 lead for Virginia. 

Constant followed up four minutes later, extending the lead to two as she capitalized on a corner opportunity. Freshman forward Diana Ordoñez received a header off the play and offered an initial shot that was deflected by the Boston College keeper, but Constant picked up the deflection and buried the shot in the 69th minute to cement the lead. 

In the 83rd minute, the Eagles capitalized off Virginia’s poor clearance as they got on the board in a corner opportunity. Boston College was unable to score the equalizer through the rest of regulation, however, leaving the Cavaliers to add another win to their conference record. 

Game 2: Virginia 5, Syracuse 3

Virginia concluded its regular season Sunday afternoon with a 5-3 win against Syracuse at the SU Soccer Stadium. The Cavaliers led an aggressive attack in the first period and didn’t let up as they dominated the pitch against the Orange.

“First of all, I thought Syracuse fought very hard throughout the game and their team deserves a lot of credit,” Coach Steve Swanson said. “We obviously had a hard time stopping their set plays and that was a big factor in the game. We played much more consistent in the second half, but we still need to improve our play in both boxes. We are looking forward to the ACC Tournament coming up.”

Virginia came out firing as Jarrett traveled into the six in the first minute of play, firing her shot but coming up empty with a high strike. Jarrett continued to apply pressure, however, and in the ninth minute, she drew the defense to allow Spaanstra to create space and challenge senior goalkeeper Lysianne Proulx. Spaanstra fired into the left post to give Virginia a 1-0 advantage. 

The Cavaliers quickly found the back of the net again in the 11th minute as freshman forward Lia Godfrey struck a through ball to Sumpter, which she then buried in her second goal of the season to extend the lead to two. 

Syracuse answered immediately in the 12th minute, splitting the lead in half as junior defender Jenna Tivnan added her second goal of the season with an assist from freshman defender Lindsey Brick. 

Both teams quieted as the first half continued, but Virginia found greater success on offense, edging the Orange 14-6 in shots and 9-3 in corner kicks. In the 32nd minute the Cavaliers extended the lead with a goal by Ordoñez. Godfrey provided a spot-on pass through the defense and Ordoñez collected just outside the six to finish the play. 

Syracuse battled back before the half, cutting the lead once again as senior defender Shannon Aviza notched her first goal of the season. The score remained 3-2 as the teams headed into the break. 

Jarrett led the drive out of the half, adding her second goal of the weekend in the 52nd minute. Ordoñez struck a pass to Jarrett from 20 yards out, and Jarrett collected in the middle of the box, hitting the upper right corner of the netting as she added to the Virginia lead. 

With a two-goal lead, the Cavaliers continued to dominate possession and secure the win. Godfrey scored her third goal of the season in the 61st minute off a free kick at the corner of the six. Ordoñez tapped the ball to the freshman, who offered a strike over the Orange defense and into the back of the net. 

A collision in the 90th minute gave Syracuse a penalty kick and junior midfielder Kate Hostage converted to leave the final score at 5-3. 

With the win, Virginia recorded its seventh victory in a short 10-game regular season. The Cavaliers await seeding for the ACC Tournament, which is scheduled to begin Nov. 10 at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, N.C.