The Virginia women’s lacrosse team picked up an NCAA victory with their 11-9 win over Elon in the first round of the tournament on Friday evening. Virginia withstood a pro-Elon crowd and a late comeback attempt by the Phoenix to secure the victory at Fetzer Field at UNC.
Eager to set the tone, the Hoos jumped out to a 4-0 start. Elon trailed by as many as six goals, and closed the gap to two with just 10 seconds remaining in the second half. Maggie Jackson led the way for the Hoos with four goals (on six shots), and Avery Shoemaker chipped in three of her own as Virginia keeper Rachel Vander Kolk had an outstanding day in cage with 12 saves. First year Sammy Mueller, the ACC Rookie of the Year, led the way for Virginia off the ground with seven ground balls.
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Virginia, now 12-8 on the season, avenged a season-opening, literal last second, 11-10 loss to Elon with the victory. Next up, the Hoos have the tall task of facing #2 overall seed (and reigning national champion) North Carolina on their home turf. The Heels dominated Virginia to the tune of a 21-11 drubbing back on March 11. Kelly Reese and Lilly DiNardo each had hat tricks in that game, but UNC controlled the game from start to finish. The game starts at 1pm and will be broadcast on ACC Network Extra.