The eighth-ranked Virginia field hockey team (8-1, 0-0 ACC) opens Atlantic Coast Conference play this weekend in Boston, facing off against the No. 12 Eagles (6-1, 0-1 ACC) at 4 p.m. Friday. The Cavaliers will then take on Boston University at 1 p.m. Sunday. Both games will be held at the Newton Campus Turf Field in Chestnut Hill, Mass.
“We are looking forward to starting our ACC games,” Virginia head coach Michele Madison said. “The team is really looking forward to the trip to Boston. It will be a good opportunity to see how much our young team has improved.”
Virginia is coming off a four-game homestand and most recently recorded wins over VCU (3-0) and Ohio (2-1 in extra time) over the weekend. The Cavaliers are an unbeaten 8-0 at home, with the team’s lone setback coming on the road to James Madison in extra time back on Sept. 10. The Cavaliers remain eighth in the NFHCA/STX poll announced Tuesday, and are fifth according to womensfieldhockey.com.
In Virginia’s nine games this season, 10 different Cavaliers have scored. First-year Paige Selenksi paces the offensive attack with seven goals while Inge Kaars Sijpesteijn and Traci Ragukas have each scored five times. Ragukas’ four assists are a team-high.
Goalkeepers Amy Desjadon and Devon Burnley have split time in the cage this season. The two have combined for 26 saves. Desjadon went the distance in UVa’s 2-1 win over the Bobcats on Sunday.
Boston College, ranked 12th, is 3-0 at home this season. The Eagles opened conference play last weekend on the road at Maryland, falling to the second-ranked Terps, 5-0. Later in the weekend, BC rebounded to knock off Towson 4-3 in extra time.
The Eagles are led by Bob Dirks, a native of the Netherlands, who has scored nine times this season. Teammate Chelsea Peole has tallied nine goals and Emily Koznivk has three scores on the year. In the cage, Julia Berkowitz has a 1.92 goals against average to go along with 28 saves on the year.
“Boston College has had a great start to the season,” Madison said. “The ACC looks as tough as ever.”
Virginia is 5-5 all-time against Boston College. Last season, the Eagles defeated UVa 2-1 during a regular season contest in Charlottesville before the Cavaliers upset BC 3-2 in extra time during the first round of the ACC Tournament in Boston a year ago.
Boston University, meanwhile, is receiving votes in the NFCHA/STX poll and is 3-4 on the year. Last weekend, the Terriers beat Central Michigan 1-0 before falling at sixth-ranked Iowa 5-1.
Kali Cardoza and Nikki Lloyd have each scored twice for BU, while six others have tallied a goal. Goalkeeper Kim Kastik has a 1.56 goals against average and 17 saves this season.
The Cavaliers have never defeated Boston University with an 0-3 all-time mark against the Terriers. The last meeting between the two schools was in 2006, a 2-1 BU win in Boston.