CARY, N.C. -- Two first-half goals from senior forward Jazmine Reeves powered the Virginia Tech women’s soccer team to a historic upset in the Atlantic Coast Conference semifinals on Friday night, as the No. 6 Hokies knocked off top-ranked Virginia, 4-2, to advance to Sunday afternoon’s ACC Championship match.
The Cavaliers entered the match as the top seed in the ACC Tournament, having won all 20 of their matches thus far in 2013. Prior to the four-goal onslaught, Tech had not scored against Virginia since the 2009 contest between the sides, a 2-0 Hokie victory in Charlottesville.
“I’m extremely proud of this team tonight,” Head Coach Chugger Adair said. “The effort from start to finish, through all 90 minutes, was outstanding from every member of this team and it showed in the way we beat an extremely talented Virginia team.”
After the teams traded possession in the opening minutes, Reeves opened the scoring in just the ninth minute for the Hokies. Sophomore Ashley Meier slotted a ball through the central defense that Reeves beat a pair of defenders to. With just goalkeeper Morgan Stearns to beat, the senior calmly buried the chance to put Tech up 1-0.
In the 17th minute, the Cavaliers leveled things on a set piece. Danielle Colaprico drilled a hard, low ball to the top of the box, where Emily Sonnett ripped an 18-yard shot that cut through traffic and snuck inside the left post to make the score 1-1.
Almost immediately, however, the Hokies seized the momentum back, again thanks to the speed of Reeves. In the 18th minute, junior Kelsey Loupee started things with another ball out of the midfield. After a slight misplay by a Virginia defender, Reeves pounced on the ball again, outran a pair of Cavaliers and drilled a shot to the far post to put Tech on top again, 2-1.
Despite a handful of additional chances for both sides, that scoreline would carry the match into halftime. At the break, the Hokies held a 4-2 advantage in shots and had placed all their shots on frame.
After the break, the Hokies weathered a lengthy Cavalier attack before doubling their advantage in the 50th minute. Sophomore Jordan Coburn played in a corner kick that freshman Murielle Tiernan found with her head and nodded into the net just inside the near post.
The freshman’s ninth goal of the season put the Hokies up 3-1. It was Coburn’s third assist of the year.
The Cavaliers pushed forward following the goal, but the Tech defense withstood the onslaught and looked to catch Virginia on the counter, producing multiple chances.
The Hokies broke through for the match-sealing goal in the 71st minute. Loupee launched in a cross from the left side that junior Katie Yensen found herself on the end of. Yensen stepped back from her defender and headed home the chance to give Tech a 4-1 lead with less than 20 minutes to play.
Virginia re-doubled its offensive efforts following Yensen’s tally and pulled a goal back in the 84th minute, when Doniak Makenzy finished a pass from Morgan Brian, but the Cavaliers would get no closer than the final 4-2 scoreline.
The win moves the Hokies to 16-3-2 on the year, matching the program record for most wins in a single season, set in 2009. This is Tech’s first win over Virginia since a 2-0 win in 2009 and the Hokies’ first ACC semifinals win since the 2008 season.
In addition to her first half brace, Reeves tallied an additional shot to lead the team with three on the evening. The Virginia defense was constantly on its heels when facing the senior’s speed, and Reeves created many additional chances with runs down the wing.
In all, seven Hokies notched a shot on the evening, as the Cavaliers outshot Tech, 10-9. However, the Hokies were more accurate with their chances, placing seven shots on goal to UVA’s five.
Colpitts tallied a trio of saves for the Hokies on the evening, corralling multiple shot that threatened to stifle the Hokies’ momentum. Stearns recorded three saves for Virginia in the loss.
“The girls worked hard and took their chances very well this evening,” Adair said. “Jazmine scoring those early goals was huge for us and the way they bounced back from an early goal against us is a sign of the toughness that this team has. This result was well-deserved for them.”
The Hokies will face off against Florida State, who took down North Carolina in the other semifinal, on Sunday afternoon for the ACC title and the ensuing automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The match is scheduled to kick off at 4 p.m., and will be broadcast live on ESPNU.
For updates on Virginia Tech women's soccer, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_WSoccer).