On a brisk Thursday night, the Virginia Tech Hokies and Notre Dame Fighting Irish met in a women’s soccer matchup, the two teams tied for eighth place in the ACC. The Hokies came into the game 7–5–3, searching for their first win during the month of October, and riding a three-game losing streak. Their previous three games were each against nationally ranked ACC opponents and they failed to score a single goal in that stretch of games. The Irish entered the matchup 7–8 and 3–4 in the ACC.
Both teams got a couple of early chances, but Virginia Tech largely dominated the possession. The first goal came only five and a half minutes into the game, off of a beautiful free kick by defender Kelsey Irwin. That first goal appeared to wake Notre Dame up a little bit as it seemed to be pushing the ball forward more and get more scoring chances.
Despite the shots on goal, nothing came to fruition for the Irish, as the Hokies’ forward Karlie Johnson would net the team their second of the game thanks in part to an error by Notre Dame goalkeeper Brooke Littman.
The Irish had a flurry of chances in the last 10 minutes of the half but just could not find the net. They got multiple fantastic chances in close, one of which was tipped by Virginia Tech keeper Mandy McGlynn and rolled quietly off the post and out of bounds. The first half would come to end with the Hokies holding a 2–0 lead.
The Hokies started out the second half with a flame under them and attacked the goal very well. They dominated possession and crashed the box but Notre Dame did a very good job of defending, allowing that pressure without giving up a goal. At this point the game became increasingly chippy. Both teams were fouling each other frequently, with some resulting in a whistle, others not.
The fans got really into the game at this point and were letting the referee hear their displeasure with each call. Players on both teams were jawing at each other, and it even escalated to the point of a few shoving matches.
“I want my players to compete and defend aggressively,” said head coach Charles Adair about the apparent tension.
Amid this craziness, Notre Dame forward Karin Muya was able to finish a good chance among some chaos in the box to pull the Irish within one goal.
It seemed after that goal Tech decided to sit back,invite pressure and simply clear the ball or counterattack. The team got a very good chance off the counterattack, but it was thwarted by some phenomenal Notre Dame defense. The Fighting Irish were putting a lot of pressure on Virginia Tech and had multiple scoring chances very late, but ultimately the Hokies’ defense stood tall and held their one goal lead.
The game would end in a 2–1 VIrginia Tech win that pulled it to an even 4–4 in ACC play. The women will be back in action Sunday as they stay at home for another ACC matchup against Clemson.