CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – In her first match back for the Virginia Tech women’s soccer team in almost a year, Emily Gray scored off a penalty kick in the 85th minute. However, the host Virginia Cavaliers already had built a three-goal lead and registered the 3-1 victory at Klöckner Stadium Saturday night in each team’s season opener.
For Gray, the goal was the seventh of her Tech career, and dating back to last season, the fourth straight match in which she has scored.
Virginia (1-0-0) put its first goal on the board just 8:29 into the match as Diana Ordenez, who tied for the ACC lead in goals (15) last season, found herself in a one-on-one situation with Tech goalkeeper Alia Skinner inside the six-yard box. She chipped a shot over Skinner to put the Cavaliers on the board.
With 12 minutes left in the contest, the Cavaliers added an insurance goal off a corner kick when Alexa Spaanstra found the back of the net off a pass from Lia Godfrey and then put the game away with a counter off a Tech free kick.
The Hokies started three freshmen in the match – goalkeeper Alia Skinner and defenders Averi Visage and Victoria Haugen – while Taylor Bryan, Erin Carleton and Tori Powell all came in as subs.
Skinner is Tech’s first freshman goalkeeper to start in net since Mandy McGlynn did so during the 2016 season.
Skinner is also the first goalkeeper to appear in net for Tech in 5,255 minutes as McGlynn played every minute of her final 56 matches and started the final 60. The last goalkeeper to start for Tech not named McGlynn was Blayne Fink at Miami on October 23, 2016.
Returning to the field after season-ending injuries last season were starters Gray, Mackenzie Graham and Kara Henderson while Holly Rose Weber came in as a sub.
The Hokies return to action Thursday for their first ACC contest of the 2020 season as they travel to Clemson to take on the Tigers with kickoff slated for 7 p.m.