Women’s lacrosse: No. 9 Virginia tops No. 20 Duke, 12-8

uva lacrosseThe No. 9 Virginia women’s lacrosse team topped No. 20 Duke 12-8 on a soggy Saturday afternoon at Koskinen Stadium in Durham, N.C.

Virginia (7-2, 3-1 ACC) fell behind early, but used a 5-0 run while holding Duke (6-4, 1-2 ACC) scoreless for over 16 minutes to lead 5-2. Duke scored two straight before the half as the Cavaliers took a 5-4 advantage into halftime. The Cavaliers came out with a 3-0 run to start the second half and would take a 10-5 lead. Duke cut the lead to three twice but each time UVA answered to take the 12-8 win.

“It was a really important win today to come down to Duke and play a talented team and hold them to single digit goals,” head coach Julie Myers said. “I thought our defense did a great job of anchoring down and coming up with loose balls consistently and giving our attackers enough chances to score. Sophie Alecce did a great job matching up against Charlotte North, who is one of the best attackers in the country this year. We did some things really well and we still have some things we can improve upon. It is the middle of March and we are excited for the next opportunity.”

Junior Avery Shoemaker (Wyndmoor, Pa.) led the Cavaliers with four goals, while sophomore Sammy Mueller (Pelham, N.Y.) and junior Maggie Jackson (Alexandria, Va.) each finished with three goals.

The Cavalier defense limited the second-leading scorer in the nation, Charlotte North, to just one shot and no goals. Olivia Jenner led the Blue Devils with two goals.

Duke opened the game with two goals to take the early lead. Virginia responded with a 5-0 run and held Duke scoreless over the span of 16:31. Jackson scored to put the Cavaliers on the board, then Shoemaker skimmed a low shot past the goalkeeper to tie the game. UVA took the lead on another goal by Shoemaker as she ran past her defender to make it 3-2 with 13:33 on the clock in the first.

Senior Ana Hagerup (Washington, D.C.) spun by her defender to extend the Cavaliers’ run and Shoemaker completed her hat trick in the first half to give UVA a 5-2 lead with 8:43 to go in the half. Duke came back to score two consecutive goals before the break as UVA took a 5-4 lead into halftime.

Virginia came out strong in the second half with a 3-0 run. Senior Kasey Behr (Northport, N.Y.) sparked the scoring by sending one into the net. Jackson scored back-to-back goals to complete her hat trick as UVA took an 8-4 lead over Duke. The Blue Devils scored to cut it to 8-5.

Mueller scored her first goal of the afternoon on a free position, then scored on another free position just over two minutes later to put UVA ahead 10-5. Duke responded with back-to-back goals to cut it to 10-7 with 12:37 to play. Mueller made it a hat trick and was 3-for-3 from the eight-meter with another free position goal to give the Cavaliers an 11-7 advantage with 9:09 remaining. The Blue Devils closed it to three, but Shoemaker stretched UVA’s lead to 12-8 bouncing in her fourth of the day and sealing the win.

Virginia led in shots (37-22), ground balls (19-14) and free position goals (4-1). The Blue Devils had the edge in draw controls (12-10) and saves (13-4), but had 23 turnovers to 11 for the Cavaliers.

Virginia will return home for two games next week. The Cavaliers host Canisius on Wednesday, March 28 at 5 p.m. before returning to ACC play to host Boston College on Saturday, March 31 at noon at Klöckner Stadium.


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