BLACKSBURG, Va. - After a 97-minute battle of back and forth scoring, the Hokies (3-1-0) outlasted in-state rival Virginia Commonwealth (1-2), defeating the Rams in overtime, 4-3, in their first of two games at UNC Greensboro’s Spartan Classic. Junior Kelsey Billups would score the game-winning goal for the Hokies eight minutes into overtime.
The Rams were the first to strike as Heather Hovanesian scored her first goal of the season and the first of the game. Hovanesian buried the ball in the lower left corner of the net after receiving it from teammate Jasmine Riley on the left side of the field.
The Hokies were quick to answer as senior forwards Emily Jukich and Julian Johnson did what they do best, working together to even the game at one apiece. Johnson, known for her throw-ins, tossed the ball in to an open Jukich who flicked the ball into the net for her second score of the season. This was the first assist of the season for Johnson.
Tech finished the first half dominating the ball, out-shooting the Rams 12-to-5 with seven shots on goal, compared to the Rams’ two.
After the half, the Hokies would score again in the 50th minute as freshman Kelly Conheeney found the back of the net for her second goal of the season. Conheeney headed the ball in after freshman Julia Goldsworthy took the team’s free kick from 25 yards out, earning the first assist of her career and first of the season.
The Rams would score on the same play 15 minutes later, just 20 yards further out. The header off a free kick gave Myriam Bouchard her first goal of the season with Meaghan Dullea assisting the tying goal, even the match at 2-2.
Tech would again put itself ahead in the 78th minute when senior forward Marika Gray scored an unassisted goal, banking the ball off the left post after scrambling with it in the box. Gray’s second score of the season gave the Hokies a 3-2 advantage with 12 minutes remaining in the game.
In the 78th minute the Rams tied the game for the third time as Jasmine Riley scored her third goal of the season, chipping the ball over Tech’s keeper after receiving the ball from Bouchard.
Although the Hokies again out-shot the Rams 23-to-11 in regulation, 90 minutes would prove not to be enough time and the game advanced into overtime.
The Hokies did not allow the Rams any chances, as they were the first to strike in the extra period. Gary fired a shot on goal in the 94th minute that was saved by the Rams’ keeper Kate Hudson. Junior Kelsey Billups would be the one to finish the game off in the 97th minute after receiving the ball off a corner kick, shooting from the top of the box, and placing it in the upper left corner of the net. The goal was the first score of the season for Billups.
Junior goalkeeper Rebekah Brook started the match but saw just 15 minutes of action, making one save and allowing just one goal. Senior forward Robin Chidester saw the remaining 82 minutes in front of the net, making one save and allowing two goals. Kate Hudson was the only keeper of the game for the Rams, playing the full 97 minutes. Hudson recorded eight saves, facing 25 shots from the Hokies
The Hokies will be back in action on Sunday, as they will play their final game in Greensboro against No. 4 Stanford at Noon.
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