On Tuesday afternoon, the Virginia Cavaliers (15-1-1, 8-0-1) returned to the #1 ranking in the United Soccer Coaches Poll for the first time in two years after blowing out Miami 6-1 at Klöckner Stadium on Sunday.
The Cavaliers have followed up their College Cup appearance last season with another spectacular season, currently sitting atop of the ACC standings. They have won five straight games and are on a 10 game unbeaten streak, not having lost since losing 4-2 to Penn State on September 9.
Overall this season, the Cavaliers have been a very well-balanced team, boasting one of the nation’s top offenses and defenses. Junior Forward Diana Ordoñez has led the Cavalier attack this season, scoring a total of 13 goals and tallying 29 points to lead the ACC in both categories. Ordoñez has been one of the best players in the ACC, winning ACC Offensive Player of the Week two times this season, including this week after her seven points against Louisville and Miami. Sophomore Midfielder Lia Godfrey has also been an integral part of the prolific Cavalier attack, leading the ACC with 12 assists this season. Senior Forward/Midfielder Alexa Spaanstra and Fifth Year Forward/Midfielder Haley Hopkins have also been crucial to the Cavalier offense, scoring 7 and 8 goals respectively.
The Cavalier defense has also been extremely strong this season, giving up an average of just .581 goals per game, placing them second in the ACC in that category. The Hoos’ stout defense has recorded 10 shutouts so far this season, the most in the ACC. Fifth Year Goalkeeper Laurel Ivory has been the leader of the Cavalier defense, giving up a total of just 9 goals. Senior Defender Claire Constant has also shined for the Hoos, winning ACC Defensive Player of the Week earlier this season. The Hoos’ defense has also been very disciplined so far, recording the least amount of fouls and yellow cards in the ACC.
The Hoos hope to continue their winning streak on Thursday night when they travel to Tallahassee, Florida to take on the #3 ranked Florida State Seminoles (14-1-1, 7-1-1) at 7 PM on ACCN. The Hoos hope to get revenge on the Seminoles, having lost to FSU twice last season. The Cavaliers’ second loss to FSU came in a shootout in the College Cup, which ended their season. Winning at the Seminoles will certainly not be easy. FSU boasts one of the nation’s best offenses, leading the ACC in points and goals scored. The Cavaliers have already clinched at least a share of the ACC regular-season championship, but they can win the ACC regular-season title outright with a win over FSU.