#15 UVA men’s soccer downs VCU, 1-0, for third straight win
The 15th-ranked UVA men’s soccer team won its third straight match, 1-0, over VCU Monday evening at Klöckner Stadium. Sam Hayward (So., Houston, Texas) scored in the 76th minute to push the Cavaliers (4-1) to the win.
“It’s a great win for us,” Virginia head coach George Gelnovatch said. “VCU is an NCAA playoff team and they’re one of the better teams that we will play all year. We knew it was going to be a good game. After our emotional game on Friday night, I think in the second half tonight we ran out of gas a little bit. I thought we regained our composure after the first 20 minutes of the second half, especially around the time of the goal.”
The contest was a tale of two halves. Virginia dominated the first half, outshooting VCU 9-0 while putting three shots on goal and thoroughly dominating the possession battle. The Rams (3-3) turned the tables and came out fast after the intermission, recording the first six shots of the half, including four on goal. VCU out-shot UVa 13-3 in the second half and 13-12 for the contest. UVa had six shots on goal to five for VCU.
UVa goalkeeper Calle Brown (R-Sr., Leesburg, Va.) recorded three saves in earning his second straight clean sheet. VCU keeper Garrett Cyprus made five saves. Both teams took three corner kicks – UVa took all of its in the first half, while VCU recorded all of its in the second stanza. VCU was whistled for 11 fouls, and UVa was called for nine.
Virginia came up with the match’s lone score in the 76th minute. Scott Thomsen (Jr., Brick, N.J.) sent a long cross deep into the box where Darius Madison (Jr., Philadelphia, Pa.) redirected the ball with a header and Hayward headed it home from just inside the goal line. It marked Hayward’s second game-winning goal in the last three matches; he also scored the eventual game winner Sept. 7 in UVa’s 2-1 win over then-No. 18 uab.
UVa played a solid first half, maintaining possession and pushing forward throughout the first 45 minutes. In the 36th minute Kyle McCord (Sr., Chester Springs, Pa.) briefly broke loose for a one-on-one chance against a charging Cyrpus, but the keeper was able to deflect the shot attempt to keep the game scoreless.
VCU was the aggressor from the onset of the second half. The Rams took five shots within the first five minutes, all within a one-minute span in the 49th and 50th minute. VCU’s first shot was knocked away in front of the goal by a Cavalier defender, and Brown made on two of the others to keep the Rams at bay.
The Cavaliers return to ACC play on Sunday (Sept. 21) when reigning national champion Notre Dame comes to Klöckner Stadium for a noon match that will be televised by ESPNU. The Fighting Irish are ranked fourth nationally in the latest NSCAA poll.