BLACKSBURG, Va. – Junior Kelly Conheeney lifts the Virginia Tech women’s soccer team over the No. 8 North Carolina Tar Heels, 1-0, in the 49th minute with the game-winning goal. The victory marks the second defeat over the Tar Heels in Tech’s program history. Oct. 4, 2009 was the first time the Hokies defeated North Carolina by the same score in Blacksburg.
Conheeney’s game-winner was the first time this year she scored on an ACC opponent as well as her 12th career game-winning goal. As a junior, she sits first in Tech’s all-time record books in game-winning goals, three higher than the runner-up, former-teammate Marika Gray, who was the first Hokie to score in a win over the Tar Heels two years ago.
“Overall it was a great day for us,” commented first-year head coach Chugger Adair. “We bounced back tremendously from the Virginia game last Thursday night. The girls responded very well and I thought we played very well from start to finish. We followed the game plan, created a number of chances, defended well and we are good. Our midfield was good, our backs were good and goalkeeping was good. I thought we deserved a few more goals to be honest because of our ability to attack today, but we were solid throughout.”
North Carolina (11-3-1, 6-2-1 ACC) came out taking the first shot of the game by Courtney Jones but it went wide, while Tech (12-5-1, 4-4-1 ACC) responded with three back-to-back shots and a corner kick. The Hokies had numerous chances to find the back of the net but all went shy of the goal. Tech’s keeper Dayle Colpitts made the only save of the half six minutes in when the Tar Heels fired a low shot from 15 yards out.
Tech took the shot advantage in the first half, shooting eight to the Tar Heel’s five. Sophomore Jazmine Reeves led both teams going into the break, taking four shots but it was not enough to put a point on the board. The two teams would go into the break still scoreless.
The two teams came out in the second right where they left off, North Carolina recorded two corner kicks early at the start of play but Tech’s defense was there to flush the ball out. North Carolina’s Meg Morris took the first shot of the half in the 48th minute, before Conheeney was set up by a Reeves cross and fired one low in the far corner past the Tar Heels’ new keeper, Anna Sieloff, to put the only point on the board at the 49:13 mark.
North Carolina turned the intensity up finishing the half with eight more shots and five on goal, but was not enough to tie the score. Tech had a chance to make the score 2-0 late in the game in the 84th minute when Reeves dribbled the ball down the field, juking the keeper and firing a hard shot that hit the post and Anne Lumpkin tried to rebound the ball, but shot went just wide of the goal.
As a team, the Hokies outshot the Tarheels 15-14, while North Carolina out cornered Tech 9-3. Reeves led both teams with six shots, while Conheeney and freshman Kelsey Loupee each recorded two. The Hokies’15 shots marks the first time in six years that Tech has recorded double-figure shots against North Carolina.
Colpitts finished the day recording her 10th career shutout, including six on the season for the Hokies. The sophomore keeper charted six saves this afternoon, while improving to 7-4-1 on the year. Adelaide Gay and Anna Sieloff split time in the goal, while Sieloff tallied two saves and was charted for the loss bringing her to 3-3-1 on the season.
“With that kind of effort, it is tremendous for all of our girls. Dayle make a couple great saves at the end to keep the lead for us and it is just tremendous. From top to bottom, great team effort and a wonderful result for us.”
The Hokies close out the regular season Thursday when they host Florida State, while honoring the four seniors at 7 p.m.
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