No. 8 Virginia falls 2-1 to No. 1 UCLA Thursday
A second-half goal proved to be the difference on Thursday night as No. 8 Virginia (4-2-0) fell to No. 1 UCLA (7-0-0) by a score of 2-1 at Klöckner Stadium in front of a crowd of 3,064 fans who turned out for the top-10 matchup.
Despite out-shooting the Bruins 13-to-5 on the night, including five shots on goal for the Cavaliers, Virginia couldn’t find a second goal, while the Bruins found the net for a second time early in the second half and held on for the win.
“They’re a good team,” said Virginia head coach Steve Swanson. “Any time you get three shots on goal and finish two of them, you have to give a team credit for that. I thought we played well enough to win, but we didn’t have the quality in the second half to sustain the pressure until the end there. We played hard and took big strides from last week.
“We were on the front foot from the beginning and disappointed that in all that 15-20 minutes they were the one to get the first goal against the run of play,” Swanson said. “Once they went up in the second half, it was us chasing the game and that’s hard to do against a team like that.”
UCLA struck first, converting a goal in the 11th minute as Ashley Sanchez found the net for the Bruins. Delanie Sheehan played a ball over the top into the box as Sanchez slipped in behind the Cavalier defense to set up the one-on-one opportunity. Sanchez dribbled into just outside the six-yard box and sent the ball inside the near post for the score.
The Cavaliers got a chance to equalize in the 14th minute when Veronica Latsko (Venetia, Pa.) put a header on frame from inside the six-yard box. Bruins keeper Teagan Micah made the save, punching the shot up over the goal to keep her team in the lead.
Virginia tied things up in the 38th minute when Ziemer converted for the home team off a free kick set up by a UCLA foul just outside the box. The Cavaliers played the ball into the box, looking for a goal, but the Bruin defense turned the attack aside and Virginia played the ball through the box to the far side. A Cavalier player was knocked down at the top of the box, setting up the free kick.
UCLA took the lead back in the second half, scoring in the 57th minute. Mackenzie Cerda took a through ball in the box from Sanchez and slipped the ball past a diving Laurel Ivory (Surfside, Fla.) and inside the far post for the 2-1 Bruin lead. Jessie Fleming tapped the ball forward to Sanchez, setting up the pass through to Cerda for the goal.
The Cavaliers would get a chance late with back-to-back shots in the box in the final minute of play, but UCLA blocked the first and saved the second to hold on for the win.
Virginia will return to action on Sunday afternoon, hosting No. 5 Penn State at 2 p.m. at Klöckner Stadium.