A-Town Throwdown: Virginia Tech Edges Colorado State in Matchup of Last Two WCLA Champs
by Elaine Kelch | LaxMagazine.com
ATHENS, Ga. -- The third annual A-Town Throwdown kicked off with championship-level play Friday as Virginia Tech defeated Colorado State, 11-10, in a battle of the previous two WCLA national champions.
It took seven minutes for No. 17 Virginia Tech to score, but the Hokies needed just two to seal the win late.
"I wish we had played the beginning of the game the way we did the end," said Virginia Tech team president Diane Revalski after the game.
But the Hokies weren't surprised by 2010 WCLA national champion Colorado State (3-4). If anything, the 2009 champions were prepared.
"We knew they play an awesome zone," Revalski said. "Just pressure all the time."
Liz Royston was the first to beat No. 13 Colorado State's pressure, scoring twice before the Rams could manage a reply. But that was short-lived, with Mary Kate Larkin scoring three goals in four minutes for the Hokies. She finished with four.
Up 6-1 halfway through the first half, Virginia Tech looked poised and in control of the reigning champs. But the Rams fired back with five unanswered goals. Brenna Mefford (three goals) and Hayley Bernstein (four goals) both scored twice during that run.
With the score tied 6-6 as the half wound down, the Hokies' Shayla Entwistle notched another to pull ahead.
Colorado State answered early in the second half, but Virginia Tech always had an answer. The teams traded goals until Katie Tracey's goal with two minutes remaining put the Hokies up 11-10.
A successful stall cemented the victory.
Looking ahead to the rest of the tournament, what games are the Hokies anticipating most?
"We're looking forward to all of them," Revalski. "We'll take every game for what it is, so, I'll say Boston College because that's the next one."
Virginia Tech will face unranked Boston College early Saturday.
UC Davis 13, Georgia 8
Tournament host Georgia (7-2) started with a spark, jumping to a 4-1 lead over No. 2 UC Davis in 10 minutes. But the Aggies (7-1) closed out the half with a four-goal run of their own, heading to the break up 8-5, before winning 13-8.
UC Davis midfielder Jaclyn Taylor led all scorers with five goals and two assists. Jennifer Hoffman (1g), Laura Maffucci (2g), Molly Fensterwald (2g) and Jessica Dresser (3g) also scored for the Aggies.
The game also saw the return of Georgia goalie Emily Seidel, who had been sidelined with a collarbone injury since the season began. Recording six saves, Seidel's hustle outside of the goal assisted the Bulldog defense in holding UC Davis to 13 goals – the only team to allow the Aggies fewer goals this season is No. 1 Colorado.
Murphy Ferguson (3g), Laura Bean (1g), Lisa Riondet (2g) and Taylor Lugash (2g) all scored for the Bulldogs.
Colorado 12, Texas 6
No. 10 Texas' flight delay earlier in the day pushed the start time back an hour, but that didn't seem to slow the Longhorns (9-2), who challenged No. 1 Colorado (8-0) early and went into the half down only 6-5.
Coming off the break, however, Colorado exploded on offense and finished with a dominant 12-6 win, benefitting from a balanced attack that saw six different players score. Kara Golmont (2g), Avery Toothman (2g), Andie Solomon (1g), Molly Carstensen (2g), Jo Shea (2g) and Sara Tanabe (3g) all found the back of the net for the Buffs.
For Texas, Stephanie Roberts (2g), Kenner Smith (1g), Tully Moorhead (1g) and Clayton Crum (2g) beat Colorado goalie Katie Mulligan to score.
Mulligan herself finished with seven saves.
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