William and Mary (3-3) took on fifth-ranked Virginia (7-0) Thursday night at Busch Field. The squad posted a solid first half, entering halftime tied with the Cavaliers at a goal apiece, but three second-half tallies by the visitors sunk the College.
Virginia took an early 1-0 lead when sophomore Paige Selenski took advantage of a Tribe defensive miscue and shot a bullet past sophomore goalkeeper Camilla Hill.
After settling down, the College was able to tie the score at one in the 28th minute when senior midfielder Wesley Drew scored off a pass from sophomore forward Mikala Savaides.
“We just stuck with the game plan and tried not [to] get rattled by the early goal,” Head Coach Peel Hawthorne ’80 said.
In the 31st minute, the Tribe found a glimmer of hope when the Cavaliers went down a player after freshman Tara Puffenberger was booked with a yellow card. But the College was not able to capitalize, and was held to only two shots during the entirety of the first half.
The second half saw the Cavaliers repeatedly test the Tribe’s defense. Virginia drew 12 penalty corners in the second half alone, but the College — led by Hill, who recorded 16 total saves— held strong. The ball stayed on the Tribe’s half of the field for the majority of the time, allowing the visitors repeated opportunities on goal. Virginia was able to post 23 shots on goal for the match, while the Tribe only managed three shots, one of them on goal.
Still, the College was able to remain even until Puffenberger punched in a pass from teammate Haley Carpenter. The score in the 53rd minute put the Cavaliers up 2-1.
“Virginia put us under a tremendous amount of pressure,” Hawthorne said after the match.
The pressure set in when sophomore defender Floor Vogels put back a rebound in the 63rd minute to stretch the score to 3-1. The Cavaliers followed up with a penalty goal four minutes later.
“We really feel like we could have taken [the game],” Hill said. “If we play like that against schools in our conference, our future is bright.”
The College returns to action Saturday when they take on Miami University at noon at Busch Field.