Olympians Shine as Virginia Field Hockey Downs Defending Champ Maryland

Geoff Burke-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

United States Olympians Michelle Vittese and Paige Selenski provided all of the goals for the #7 Cavalier field hockey team as they defeated fourth-ranked and defending national champ Maryland 3-2 on Friday night.

Perhaps they felt Maryland deserved a little payback for last night's come-from-behind victory over Virginia's #3 ranked women's soccer team. I know I did. But whatever the reason, American Olympians Michelle Vittese and Paige Selenski made sure that Virginia would come out on top on the field hockey pitch. The pair scored all three goals - all unassisted - to down the defending national champion Terrapins 3-2 earlier this evening at the University Hall Turf Field in Charlottesville.

The Cavaliers took the early lead in the seventh minute when Vittese took a shot from the right side and sent it just inside the left post. Maryland would answer back just 13 minutes later when Maryland capitalized on a two-on-one situation and the Terps' Katie Gerzabek got the equalizer. The score would remain knotted at one until well into the second half.

In the 48th minute, the Terrapins took their first lead of the game when Anna Dessoye beat Virginia goalie Jenny Johnstone.

Six minutes later, a flurry of activity put the Cavaliers back in the driver's seat. Vittese found herself in a one-on-one situation with the goalie and put the ball in one of the hardest places for the goalie to block - over her head. Just two minutes later, it was Vittese again making a fantastic play intercepting a pass and feeding it to her Olympic teammate Selenski who scored on the breakaway.

The loss was just Maryland's second on the year. They fell to the eighth-ranked Monarchs of Old Dominion back on August 31st. Maybe the Terps should just stay out of the Commonwealth. I think many of us would appreciate that. In case you were wondering, the Cavaliers beat the Monarchs 5-4 just three days later.

Virginia (10-2, 2-0 ACC) has sole possession of first place in the ACC right now, though they might share it with second-ranked North Carolina after the Tar Heels play #15 Wake Forest tomorrow afternoon.

The Cavaliers return to action on Sunday at 1pm when they host St. Joseph's at the University Hall Turf Field. The next conference match is actually not until Saturday, October 13th at 1pm when the 'Hoos travel to Chapel Hill to take on the Tar Heels. That could very well be a match that decides the regular season champion this year.

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