As Cavalier fans streamed out of Klockner Stadium following the disappointing men's lacrosse team loss to Johns Hopkins, the Virginia women's lacrosse team was practicing on the lower field next to the entrance, preparing for their game that would start in about 45 minutes.
Cavalier head coach Julie Myers walked over to one of the ushers and (jokingly?) asked if he was reminding "all these fine folks to come back in for our game in half an hour?"
Based on the attendance (405) I'd say they probably did not heed that advice. But maybe they should have if they wanted to get the sour taste of a loss out of their mouth.
A furious rally by Princeton in the final 13 minutes notwithstanding, it was a dominating performance by the Cavaliers over the visiting Tigers in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Junior Courtney Swan did a
little bit lot of everything en route to a four-goal, two-assist performance, leading Virginia to a 12-6 margin more than halfway through the second period. Seniors Liza Blue and Maddy Keeshan each tallied three goals as the Cavaliers held on for the 13-11 victory.
Princeton did rally late, scoring five goals in the last 13 minutes, including three goals in the final five minutes. But in the end, the mid-game margin proved insurmountable for the Tigers.
Virginia, the #6 seed in the NCAA tournament moves on to face North Carolina, the #3 seed next Saturday in Chapel Hill. Game time has not yet been announced. The Tar Heels dropped the Cavaliers 14-10 in Charlottesville back on March 8th.
Of the remaining eight teams in the women's NCAA tournament, six of them are from the ACC. Maryland & Duke and Boston College & Syracuse also face off in the Elite Eight. Northwestern and Florida are the two outsiders in the tournament. Maryland eliminated Virginia from the ACC tournament last month before defeating Syracuse for the title.