Cavs Start Fast, Then Roll Over Mountaineers
Virginia 19, Mount St. Mary's 2
By Jim Reedy
Special to The Washington Post
Friday, May 14, 2004; Page D08
CHARLOTTESVILLE, May 13 -- The Virginia women's lacrosse team breezed to victory in the first round of the NCAA tournament, scoring on six of its first eight shots en route to an easy 19-2 win against an overmatched Mount St. Mary's team making its first NCAA appearance.
The second-seeded Cavaliers won by the fifth-largest margin in the tournament's 23-year history -- one more than their first-round win last year against American -- and dominated the game.
"It pretty much played to our advantage from the very beginning," Cavaliers Coach Julie Myers said.
Virginia (16-3), the top scoring team in the country, got at least two goals from seven players, led by Amy Appelt and Tyler Leachman, who each had three. The Cavaliers will host a second-round game Sunday afternoon against Northwestern, which beat Notre Dame on Thursday, 10-8.
Despite a layoff of 2½ weeks since winning the ACC championship on April 25, the Cavaliers needed just 1 minute 15 seconds to take control. On the opening possession Appelt darted out from behind the net and buried a point-blank shot. Four and a half minutes later the margin was already 4-0 after Morgan Thalenberg, Kim Connors and Caitlin Banks scored in quick succession.
With 18:25 left Virginia led 6-0 on a goal that exemplified how easily this win came. Goalkeeper Andrea Pfeiffer started the play with a routine save, then flung an outlet pass near midfield to Haas, who found Kate Breslin open near the cage. In a flash, the Cavaliers had scored again. Mount St. Mary's Coach Courtney Martinez Connor signaled for a timeout.
The Mountaineers (15-5) fought on more equal footing with Virginia for the rest of the half, and Casey Paris finally got them on the board midway through, but a full comeback was too much to ask. By halftime the margin was 8-1.
Goalie Naomi Campano, the Northeast Conference player of the year, had already allowed as many goals as she usually does in a full game (8.3).
"It's our first time being here and like I told my girls, it's not going to be the last," said Martinez Connor, a 2001 Maryland graduate who led the Mount to its first NEC championship this season.
© 2004 The Washington Post Company