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Women’s soccer: Westrup’s 90th minute goal lifts No. 7 UVA over Bucknell

uva soccerIt came down to the final minute, but the home team found the goal it needed as No. 7 UVA (4-0-0) got a header from senior Brianna Westrup (Corona del Mar, Calif.) in the 90th minute to defeat Bucknell (1-3-0) by a score of 1-0 on Sunday afternoon.

With seconds remaining in regulation, senior Betsy Brandon (Littleton, Colo.) set up for a corner kick and sent the ball in toward the far post. Westrup worked her way into space on her run, heading the ball in to put Virginia on top.

It was the fifth career goal for Westrup. Four of her five goals are game-winners for Virginia. Westrup also hit the game-winner for Virginia earlier this week in a win at William & Mary.

The Virginia defense also held fast throughout the match, holding the Bison without a shot. It was the first time for the Cavaliers to keep a team from notching a shot since Virginia held Old Dominion without a shot on Aug. 28 of the 2016 season.

“Bucknell was really organized and fought hard,” said Virginia head coach Steve Swanson. “At the end of the day, their defending gave us more problems than our attack gave them. We have to show more quality in the attacking third and have to execute better. We’re happy we got the win, but there is a lot to work on and take away from the game.”

The Cavaliers created several opportunities in the first half, but were unable to find the net as the Bucknell defense answered the call each time. Virginia notched 11 shots in that period, with several blocked by defenders and four saved by the Bison keeper.

The second half opened with the Cavaliers applying pressure to the Bucknell defense, rattling off seven shots – including a strike off the crossbar from freshman Rebecca Jarrett (Washington Township, N.J.). But, the Bison defense remained up to the task and turned away each scoring opportunity. Bucknell’s keeper notched three saves off those first seven shots in the second half.

The Cavalier attack continued to try to find an opening in the Bucknell defense, tallying 27 shots with 10 on goal heading into the final minute of regulation. That’s when Virginia finally broke through as Westrup notched her goal to put the Cavaliers on top.

Virginia will return to action on Sunday, Sept. 2, when the Cavaliers host Hofstra at 2 p.m. at Klöckner Stadium.