Hokies put the defensive squeeze on Orange late, rally for fourth ACC victory

(18) Syracuse (8-6) 680014
(14) Virginia Tech (11-4) 4100115
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BLACKSBURG – Senior Tristan McGinley took a feed from Julia Bolte and gathered herself to score the game winner 31 seconds into the second overtime period, vaulting Tech to 4-1 in the ACC standings with two regular season contests remaining.

The win was the Hokies’ first over Syracuse in 10 tries and extends the program record to four league wins in a single campaign, as they match the program mark for wins in a season at 11.

After the Orange took a 13-9 lead through Nicole Levy, Tech tightened up defensively and finished the half on a 5-1 run with goals from Marissa Davey, McGinley, Paige Petty and Taylor Caskey.

Syracuse had possession in the final moments and chose to run down the shot clock, eventually turning the ball over as the horn sounded to signal the extra session.

Leigh Lingo grabbed five ground balls in the game and Mary Clair Byrne tallied three, a big part of the Hokies’ 20-14 advantage in that category.

After the first overtime period that saw both teams squander opportunities, Tech won the opening draw of the second extra frame, resulting in Bolte’s play to McGinley in the middle, culminating with the game-winning goal.

“Putting Elena Ricci on the draw circle there made a difference for us we got more than they did in the end and that led to the final goal,” head coach John Sung said.

Tech was led offensively by freshman Paige Petty who scored five goals on the afternoon, a week after scoring seven in the Hokies’ win over Louisville.

McGinley turned in another solid performance with four goals and an assist and Davey and Caskey each added three points for the Hokies who have back-to-back wins in the league by a score of 15-14.

Meagh Graham earned the win in goal, leaving the field for a few moments to receive treatment before returning to her post.

“Really impressed by Meagh going back into the game, and making a few saves down the stretch today,” Sung said.

The Orange fell to 8-6, 0-4 in the ACC with the result despite six goals from attacker Nicole Levy. Asa Goldstock made 11 saves in goal for Syracuse.

The Hokies are back on the field on Saturday, April 14 when they take on the nationally ranked Boston College Eagles. First draw is set for 12 p.m. and can be seen on ACC Network Extra.

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