Men’s soccer: No. 16 Virginia downs Virginia Tech, 1-0
The No. 16 Virginia men’s soccer team used a 12th-minute goal from freshman Derrick Etienne (Paterson, N.J.) to earn a 1-0 win over Virginia Tech Friday evening at Thompson Field in Blacksburg. The match was part of the Commonwealth Clash presented by Virginia529.
With the result, Virginia (9-3-2; ACC: 4-2-1/13 points) moved into fourth place in the overall ACC standings heading into the final weekend of league play. UVA has clinched a first-round bye in the ACC Tournament. The top four teams in the final league standings play host to quarterfinal matches in the league tournament. Virginia Tech dropped to 5-7-3 (ACC: 0-4-3/3 points).
UVA extended its unbeaten streak against Virginia Tech to 11 matches (8-0-3). The Cavaliers have not lost to the Hokies since Oct. 29, 2005.
“As always, it was a really hard-fought game,” Virginia head coach George Gelnovatch said. “I think that’s something I say every time we play Virginia Tech, especially when we play in Blacksburg. I thought in spots in the beginning of the first and the beginning of the second half, we played really well, and in the first half that’s where we got our goal. We were able to manage the game, especially down the stretch and did a very good job of closing out the game.”
Virginia Tech out-shot Virginia 13-6 and put five shots on goal to three for UVA. The Hokies also held a 5-2 edge in corner kicks. The physical match featured 24 fouls – 13 on UVA and 11 on Virginia Tech.
Virginia goalkeeper Jeff Caldwell (So., Todd, N.C.) tied a career high with five saves as he recorded his fifth clean sheet of the season. Virginia Tech keeper Ben Lundgaard made a pair of saves.
Virginia scored in the 12th minute, marking its earliest goal in a match this season. Etienne took a ball just inside the right touch line, then dribbled into the box and through a trio of Virginia Tech defenders before toe poking a shot through a defender’s legs and just inside the far post. The goal was his second of the season and came on UVA’s lone shot of the half.
“Not just the goal, but it was a pretty complete game for Derrick,” Gelnovatch said. “He played the full 90 minutes. Defensively he did a good job. I would say this was Derrick’s most complete game here.”
Virginia Tech controlled the run of play for much of the first half and owned an 8-1 advantage in shots in the first half. Virginia turned the tables and possessed the ball for much of the second half, although the Hokies created some excellent chances in the waning minutes of the match as they pressed forward in attempting for the equalizer.
In the 82nd minute Ricardo John sent a great cross to Drew Ott, whose volley went just wide. With just under two minutes remaining, Virginia Tech’s Daniel Lauretano fired a dangerous free kick that ricocheted off the post, just inches below the crossbar.
The match was sponsored by Virginia529, the official college savings plan of University of Virginia Athletics. With Virginia’s victory, the Hoos have earned a point in the Virginia529 Commonwealth Clash. The score for the Clash is now, University of Virginia – 1.5 and Virginia Tech – 0. Learn more about Virginia529 and this competition at TheCommmonwealthClash.com.
The Cavaliers return home next Friday (Oct. 30) to play No. 6 North Carolina in the regular-season finale. Game time is 7 p.m. Prior to the match, Virginia will hold Senior Day ceremonies.