Virginia, Boston College Win Afternoon Quarterfinal Games
Nov. 11, 2009
CARY, N.C. - Goals were hard to come by as the Atlantic Coast Conference Men's Soccer Championship got under way amidst heavy rains and high winds on Wednesday afternoon.
For Virginia and Boston College, one goal proved to be enough.
Sophomore Tony Tchiani's goal with three minutes left lifted fifth-seeded Virgina to a 1-0 win over fourth-seeded Maryland. The third-seeded Eagles were pushed to the limit and beyond by sixth-seeded Duke, but Edvin Worley headed in a goal in overtime to keep BC in the winners' bracket.
Virginia (13-3-2) moved on to Friday's 5:30 p.m. semifinal game to face the winner of Wednesday's later game between top-seeded Wake Forest and ninth-seeded Clemson. Boston College also advanced to the semfinal round, where it will face the winner of No. 2 North Carolina vs. No. 7 NC State on Friday at 8 p.m.
#5 Virginia 1, #4 Maryland 0
The teams appeared headed for overtime until the closing minutes, when Tchiani burst into the open field, controlled possession and lined a shot past Maryland goalkeeper Zac MacMath for the lone score of the match.
Virginia coach George Gelnovatch felt it was a case of two evenly-matched and rugged defensive teams - and not the adverse weather conditions - that made for the low-scoring, competitive match.
"The last time we played Maryland, it was a 0-0 tie," Gelvontatch noted. "I think we had two teams competing and doing a good job of defending. So, whether it was a beautiful day or not, I don't think it would have made a difference.
"I thought, after all things considered, the ball actually moved on the ground ok. The wind was a little bit of a factor. We all would have liked to play in better conditions, but these were certainly allowable conditions."
The rematch between the 2008 Championship finalists stood scoreless at the half, despite the Cavaliers' 7-1 edge in shots. MacMath recorded two saves, and Virginia's other shot on goal missed its mark. Virginia wound up with a 12-6 advantage in shots, which looked as if it could be a meaningless stat until Tchiani broke through.
"We had talked about keeping the ball on the ground and the fact that the standing water issue wasn't a problem really helped us," Gelvonatch said. "We stayed the course and kept plugging away and Tony Tchani did great with his goal."
While Virginia moved on the semifinal round, Maryland (12-5-2 with an RPI of 16) should remain solid position for an NCAA berth when the selection committee makes its announcement on Monday.
#3 Boston College 1, #6 Duke 0
The Eagles' winning shot was set up when Boston College Charlie Rugg challenged Duke goakeeper James Belshaw and swung a pass to teammate Colin Murphy, who lofted a cross that Worley headed in for the winning goal.
Boston College coach Ed Kelly credited his players for a solid defensive effort against a Duke team that featured two of the league's leading scorers in Cole Grossman and Ryan Finney.
"It was a good game," Kelley said. "I thought that we did very well on the defending side. We shut out Cole [Grossman] and [Ryan] Finney. I thought that part when very well. We had several injuries so we had a lot of guys on the bench but we didn't really have a lot of guys who played a lot on the bench."
The match stood 0-0 at the end of a first half in which both teams saw limited chances in the wet and windy conditions. The Eagles' Murphy registered the only shot on goal for either team, but the attempt was thwarted by Duke's Belshaw. Both teams continued to struggle to score until the Eagles set up Worley's game-winner in OT.
"It was a tough battle for both sides, but it is what it is," Kelly said. "As a New England team we are probably used to (the weather conditions) a little more."
Duke slipped to 12-6 with the loss.