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Virginia women’s basketball proved itself last week in the Cayman Islands Classic where they crushed Tulane and gave the former national champion LSU a run for their money. The Cavaliers (6-2, 0-0 ACC) continued to excel this week, winning an overtime thriller against Missouri at John Paul Jones Arena before dominating La Salle in Philadelphia.
After a promising back half of the season, Virginia football ended 2023 on a sour note Saturday in a 55-17 loss to Virginia Tech. As the year comes to a close, The Cavalier Daily’s two football beat writers take a holistic look at where the Cavaliers stand and what to expect going into 2024.
Virginia women’s basketball won and lost one game each in the Cayman Islands Classic tournament held in George Town, Cayman Islands. The Cavaliers (4-2, 0-0 ACC) bounced back from their first loss of the season Friday with a comeback win against Tulane, where the second half was all Virginia in a dominant showing in an 81-59. Saturday brought a test for the Cavaliers, with reigning National Champion No. 7 LSU coming to the court. Virginia was able to fight through all four quarters, but the Tigers (7-1, 0-0 SEC) simply became too much and overpowered Virginia for a 73-68 victory.
Virginia returns home this Saturday to face Duke at Scott Stadium. This season has been full of heartbreak for the Cavaliers (2-8, 1-5 ACC), who have played most of their games close but have often been unable to seal the deal with a win. Their most recent game might have been the most disappointing, as Louisville rallied for 17 fourth quarter points to avoid the upset.
Virginia women’s basketball hosted Campbell Sunday afternoon at John Paul Jones Arena. The Cavaliers (2-0, 0-0 ACC) were coming off an impressive performance in their season opener when they beat Maryland Eastern Shore 76-52. The Camels (2-1, 0-0 Colonial Atlantic) had also started their season strong and one of their wins included a 71 point victory against NC Wesleyan. Ultimately, after a close first half, Virginia pulled away and won the game 74-49.
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Virginia hit the road in a Thursday night contest at L&N Federal Credit Union Stadium against No. 11 Louisville. The Cavaliers (2-8, 1-5 ACC) were looking to rebound after losing by 28 to Georgia Tech. The Cardinals (9-1, 6-1 ACC) were hoping to continue their success at home and secure their 11th straight home victory. Ultimately, Virginia played some of their best football, but the Cavaliers could not finish the job, losing the game 31-24.
Virginia football pulled off a historic comeback against No. 10 North Carolina Saturday night, stunning an undefeated Tar Heel team that was expecting to walk away with an easy win. The Cavaliers (2-5, 1-2 ACC) will now look to continue their success as they travel to play Miami at Hard Rock Stadium in another tough ACC matchup. The Hurricanes (5-2, 1-2 ACC) are coming off a thrilling two-overtime victory over Clemson and boast one of the most talented offenses in the country.
Virginia returns home this Saturday as they take on an in-state opponent in William and Mary at noon. The Cavaliers (0-5, 0-2 ACC) have had one of the toughest starts to the season they could have imagined. They have yet to pick up a win, but three of the five games have been incredibly close. The Tribe (4-1, 2-1 CAA) are ranked No. 9 in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS), and had won 11 straight regular season games, but are coming off a close loss to Elon. William and Mary is headed by Coach Mike London, who as many Virginia fans may remember, coached the Cavaliers from 2010 to 2015. Virginia will aim to hand their former coach a loss on Saturday afternoon.
Following the heartbreaking loss to NC State last Friday night, Virginia is looking to change the direction of their season Saturday afternoon on the road against Boston College. The Cavaliers (0-4, 0-1 ACC) have had opportunities to win each of their last three games, but fourth quarter collapses and preventable mistakes have led to their current record. The Eagles (1-3, 0-2 ACC) are coming off a tough loss in which Louisville doubled their score. However, each of their other three games has been decided by three points or less. If this trend continues, we can expect yet another nail-biter this weekend.
Virginia opened ACC play at home Friday night, taking on NC State in a primetime matchup. The Cavaliers (0-4, 0-1 ACC) needed to change the direction of their season after three tough losses. The Wolfpack (3-1, 1-0 ACC) were coming off a commanding 45-7 win against the Virginia Military Institute and were hoping to continue that momentum into conference play. Unfortunately, Virginia continued its disappointing start to the season with a 24-21 loss.
Virginia is set to hit the road once again, facing off against a familiar adversary in Maryland Friday evening. The Cavaliers (0-2, 0-0 ACC) are coming off a game where they blew an 11-point fourth-quarter lead against James Madison. On the flip side, the Terrapins (2-0, 0-0 Big 10) have begun their season with impressive victories over Towson and Charlotte. With a mere 13.9 percent chance of victory according to ESPN, Virginia is yet again aiming for a monumental upset if they are hoping to secure their first win of the season.
Following a 36-point defeat against No. 12 Tennessee, Virginia will look to bounce back in a big way against an in-state opponent in James Madison. The Cavaliers (0-1, 0-0 ACC) are looking to pick up their seventh straight home-opener win but enter the game as six-point underdogs. The Dukes (1-0, 0-0 Sun Belt) dominated in their season opener against Bucknell, winning 38-3. James Madison is the first FBS transitioning team to be favored in a game against a Power Five program in at least the last 15 years. With Virginia catching the injury bug early in the season, they will need some added help to pull off the upset this Saturday.
Virginia football opened the season Saturday afternoon on the road against No. 12 Tennessee. The Cavaliers (0-1, 0-0 ACC) were hoping to pull off a huge upset, as they entered the game 28-point underdogs. The Volunteers (1-0, 0-0 SEC) boasted the nation’s top offense last year and were hoping to replicate their success with a new starting quarterback. Ultimately, the game was a one-sided affair as Virginia lost the game 49-13.
No. 12 Virginia women’s soccer hoped to continue their early season success against West Virginia Thursday night. The Cavaliers (4-0-1, 0-0 ACC) had not given up a goal all season and had scored a remarkable 14 goals through just 4 games. Meanwhile, the Mountaineers (2-3, 0-0 Big 12) were trying to pull off an upset after close defeats to No. 4 Duke and No. 8 Penn State. Ultimately, Virginia avoided the late pressure and prevailed in a 2-1 contest.
No. 5 Virginia women’s soccer entered Sunday night’s contest against George Mason coming off their first draw of the season against Michigan. The Cavaliers (3-0-1, 0-0 ACC) had been unable to score in Thursday night’s game and were looking to get their offensive performance back on track. Meanwhile, the Patriots (0-4, 0-0 Atlantic 10) were simply looking to get their first goal of the season. Unfortunately for George Mason, that did not happen Sunday night as Virginia came away with a 4-0 victory on the road.
No. 5 Virginia women’s soccer came off their 5-0 victory against Nevada by replicating that score at the in-state, home matchup against Radford. The Cavaliers, (2-0, 0-0 ACC) held the Highlanders (1-1, 0-0 Big South) to just one shot in their stellar defensive performance. Offensively, the Cavaliers put up 24 shots of their own and made junior goalkeeper Jordan Phillips’s night a busy one.
No. 7 Virginia flew into Omaha with its eyes set on winning their second National Championship in program history. Confidence was high following a sweep through the regionals and a performance in the Super Regionals in which it outscored Duke by 19 runs. The starting pitching, which had been a question mark for the Cavaliers (50-15, 19-11 ACC) had been nearly perfect, and thus Virginia looked as if it lacked any holes entering the eight-team tournament. Unfortunately for the Cavaliers, many of the bats went cold and late-inning pitching proved costly, leading to their elimination from this year’s College World Series.
No. 7 Virginia baseball clinched a berth to the College World Series over the weekend, marking its sixth appearance in Omaha, Neb. in program history. While the Cavaliers (50-13, 19-11 ACC) dominated the competition for most of the season, the path to compete for a national championship was not always certain. What at one point looked like a disappointing repeat of the 2022 season where Virginia could not overcome late season struggles and fell in the Regional round turned into exhilaration at Disharoon Park Sunday afternoon.
Following an offensive explosion in a Tuesday night victory against VCU, No. 8 Virginia traveled to South Bend, Ind. to take on Notre Dame. The Cavaliers (32-7, 12-7 ACC) were hoping to avoid back-to-back weekend series losses as were the Fighting Irish (21-15, 9-10 ACC). Ultimately Virginia’s struggles continued, particularly on the pitching side with Notre Dame scoring 25 runs across three games.