Virginia Shuts Out NC State to Win ACC Men's Soccer Championship
Nov. 15, 2009
CARY, N.C. - Virginia recorded its eighth consecutive shutout, blanking NC State, 1-0, Sunday afternoon to win the 2009 ACC Men's Soccer Championship at WakeMed Soccer Park.
Freshman forward Will Bates put the fifth-seeded Cavaliers (14-3-3) on the board at the 15:12 mark in the first half. Jordan Evans and Hunter Jumper fed the ball to Bates, whose shot from six yards out found the back left corner of the net. Behind stingy play by the defense and an MVP performance by goalkeeper Diego Restrepo, one goal was all Virginia would need to win its 10th ACC title and its first since 2004.
"This is a tough, tough tournament, this ACC Tournament," said Virginia coach George Gelnovatch. "I think there were six teams in the (nation's) top 12. It's a tough, tough thing to advance to the championship game. It's incredibly difficult to win, and I couldn't be more proud of our guys."
Virginia out-shot NC State, 15-8, but was unable to pull away as Wolfpack goalkeeper Christopher Widman recorded four second-half saves. The Cavaliers extended their unbeaten streak to 11 contests entering the NCAA Tournament, which will begin on Thursday.
"Winning an ACC Championship is fantastic," Gelnovatch said. "I told our guys afterwards, the goal now is to get back to Cary (for the NCAA College Cup semifinals and finals), and that's in four weeks. We'll enjoy this one today, and we'll get ourselves ready for the NCAA tourney."
The sixth-ranked Cavaliers, who own the nation's longest active streak with 28 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, earned the ACC's automatic bid to the 2009 NCAA Tournament. The NCAA will announce the pairings on Monday at 5:30 p.m. on ESPNews.
No. 20 NC State (13-6-2), which competed in the title game of the ACC Championship for the first time since 1990, is looking for its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2005.
"We have a lot to look forward to," said NC State coach George Tarantini. "We want to work. This team is not over yet. This is not a goodbye; this is a goodbye to the ACC Tournament. We are ready for the NCAA and we expect to go the farthest we can."