Cavaliers Set Records in NCAA Opener

The Virginia field hockey team advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a 3-2 victory over Iowa. Paige Selenski scored the 100th goal of her career in head coach Michele Madison’s 100th win at Virginia.

Selenski wasted little time in becoming just the tenth player in NCAA history to score 100 goals in a career. Five minutes into the game, Selenski carried the ball across the end line to the left side, lifting the ball past the goalie to put the Cavaliers up, 1-0.

Virginia, which has now won 10 games at Turf Field this season, found itself in the unfamiliar territory of trailing at home after Iowa scored on back-to-back penalty corners, the first at the ten minute mark and the second a minute and a half later.

The Cavaliers seemed to be heading to halftime with a 2-1 deficit when sweeper Elly Buckley, playing up with time ticking down and the ball in the Cavalier offensive zone, dribbled past multiple defenders into the center of the circle, taking a contested shot that managed to find its way into the net with 11 seconds remaining in the first half.

The score remained knotted 2-2 through most of the second half. Virginia outshot Iowa 6-2 in the period, but the shot that ended up mattering the most came with 15 minutes left in the game. Elizabeth Hanks took a pass from Britt Knouse and hit it through the circle toward the goal. Hadley Bell, perfectly positioned, tapped in the ball for what would prove to be the game-winner.

Iowa’s last true opportunity to score came with four minutes left in the game. The Hawkeyes were awarded a penalty corner, but the shot was deflected before reaching Cavalier goalkeeper Jenny Johnstone.

The Cavaliers got possession of the ball with a minute left in the game and managed to dribble out the clock to secure a spot in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

“We are really excited,” said head coach Michele Madison. “Iowa is really well coached and they have a great defensive unit, especially their goalkeeper. They gave us everything we could handle. I am very proud of our kids and how they really stayed composed and stuck with the game plan. We tried to get Iowa to play to their left, using the left side of the field. We were okay at it, but Iowa is really good at getting it to their right.”

The victory was the 100th win at Virginia for Madison. The seventh-year UVa coach, who won the 300th overall game of her head coaching career earlier this season, now has a record of 100-52 at Virginia.

Selenski’s goal was the 100th in her career, making her the tenth player in NCAA history and the second in ACC history to reach the 100 goal mark. She is one goal shy of tying both the Virginia and ACC records of 101 career goals scored by Virginia alum Meredith Thorpe (1995-98).

Buckley scored her 16th goal of the year. Bell’s goal was her fourth of the season.

Johnstone made three saves, all in the first half.

The Cavaliers (16-5) are one of eight teams remaining in the NCAA Tournament. North Carolina, Old Dominion, Syracuse, Penn State, UConn, and Maryland also advanced with wins on Saturday. Princeton defeated Drexel, 5-0, in the early game at Turf Field to move on to the second round.

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