No. 1 Virginia facing off against No. 9 Wake Forest in Men’s Soccer College Cup semifinals
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – No. 1 Virginia (20-1-1) squares off against No. 9 Wake Forest (16-4-2) in the NCAA College Cup Semifinals on Friday, Dec. 13 at Sahlen’s Stadium (WakeMed Soccer Park). The match is slated for an 8:30 p.m. start and will air live on ESPNU.
Game Coverage: In addition to the ESPNU broadcast, the game can also be streamed on the ESPN app for authenticated subscribers of ESPN. Links to the stream and in-game live stats will be available on VirginiaSports.com. Fans can also follow the Virginia men’s soccer official twitter account (@UVAMenSoccer) for in-game updates.
• Virginia is making its 13th College Cup appearance and sixth under head coach George Gelnovatch.
• The 13 College Cup appearances are the fifth most in men’s DI soccer history.
• Virginia and Wake Forest met exactly one month ago (Nov. 13) in the ACC Semifinal, a 1-0 Cavalier victory in Charlottesville.
• Virginia comes into the Friday’s semifinal winners of its last nine matches, the longest active win streak in the NCAA. It marks the second, nine-match win streak of the season and is only the second time program history (1993) the Cavaliers have put together win streaks of nine or more games in the same year.
• No. 9 Wake Forest will be the sixth-straight, ranked opponent for Virginia. The Cavaliers are 11-0 against teams from the United Soccer Coaches Top-25 in 2019 and 5-0 against teams in the top-10.
• Virginia has been part of each of the last 39 NCAA Tournaments, the longest streak in the history of college soccer.
• The Cavaliers are the NCAA Tournament’s No. 1 overall seed for the second time (1995) in school history and first time under Gelnovatch.
AND WE MEET AGAIN
• In 58 all-time meetings, either Virginia or Wake Forest has been the No. 1 team in the nation 14 times. Including Friday night’s match, one or both teams have been ranked in the top five in 33 of the 58 all-time matchups.
• Virginia limited Wake Forest to just five shot attempts, including just one on frame in a 1-0 victory in the 2019 ACC Championship Semifinals on Nov. 13. Nathaniel Crofts’ goal in the 25th minute stood as the Cavaliers snapped a four-match winless streak against the Demon Deacons.
• The Cavaliers are unbeaten (14-0-5) against Wake Forest in ACC Tournament games and NCAA Tournament games (2-0).
• The last time the two programs saw each other was in the NCAA Tournament came in the 2009 College Cup semifinals in Cary, a 2-1 overtime victory for the Cavaliers that eventually led to the Virginia’s sixth National Championship.
• The two teams engaged in a wild, back and forth match that saw Wake Forest score two unanswered, second-half goals just 1:37 apart to come away with a 3-2 victory in front of 2,791 fans at Klöckner Stadium last season. Virginia held its only lead after a Daniel Steedmanbicycle kick goal in the 73rd minute. Three of the game’s four second half goals came in a 4:52 span.
• Virginia has encountered Wake Forest twice in the ACC Championship game, most recently in 2017 that ended in a scoreless draw. The Demon Deacons claimed the tournament title after defeating the Cavaliers in penalty kicks, 4-3.
CARY IS FOR VIRGINIA
• Virginia has won two National Championships (2009 & 2014) and four ACC Titles (2002, 2003 & 2009, 2019) at Sahlens’s Stadium.
• Last month in Cary, the Cavaliers hoisted the ACC Tournament Championship trophy after a 3-1, come-from-behind victory over top-seeded Clemson.
• In its last NCAA appearance in Cary, Virginia outlasted UCLA in penalty kicks to win the 2014 National Championship, the program’s seventh national title.
• The Cavaliers have been in Cary for 11 ACC Tournaments (2002-05; 2007-11; 2019) and two College Cups (2009 & 2014). Virginia owns a 17-5-3 all-time record at Sahlen’s Stadium.
• The Cavaliers come into Friday with the lowest goals against average (0.40), the highest save percentage (.859) and the most shutouts (15) in the country.
• Virginia’s 20 wins and .932 win percentage are tops in college soccer.
• Virginia is one of three programs (Missouri State & Georgetown) with one loss this season.
• The Cavaliers have conceded just nine goals this season, the fewest in the country and tied for the second fewest in program history. Only the 2009 National Championship team (2009) was more stingy defensively with only eight goals conceded.
• The goal first goal allowed against SMU (Dec. 6) snapped a 320-minute opponent scoreless streak and was the first surrendered in 11 matches against non-ACC schools.
• A Virginia opponent has scored multiple goals five times in the last 48 matches and only twice this season.
• Virginia has trailed three times this season for a total of 177:59 of 2,018 minutes played this season.
• Including its three NCAA Tournament wins, Virginia is 15-0 when leading at halftime and 18-0-1 when scoring first.
• Virginia has held opponents to five or less shots eight times this season, including two of the three games of the NCAA Tournament.
MORE THAN JUST GOALS
• Sophomore Daryl Dike leads the Cavaliers in goals (7), assists (8) and points (22).
• His eight assists are the most by a Cavalier since Scott Thomsen’s eight in 2009. A Cavalier hasn’t reached nine assists since Nico Colaluca in 2006
• Dike drew two fouls in the box in the NCAA Quarterfinal against SMU that directly led to Cavalier goals. It marked the sixth and seventh time this season he’s drawn fouls that have directly led to scores, making him a part of 22 of the Cavaliers 41 tallies (54%) this season.
OUTSCORING THE BEST
• Virginia has faced the current No. 1, 2 & 3 offenses in the country in a four-week, postseason span.
• The Cavaliers outlasted SMU (No. 2) in the NCAA quarterfinals, 3-2, pinned two on Campbell (No. 3) in the NCAA Second Round and scored unanswered second half goals against Clemson (No. 1) in the ACC title game.
• The Cavaliers outscored the potent trio, 8-3.
CAVALIER CALLING CARD
• Virginia has produced a shutout in 15 of its 22 matches this season, the most in the country.
• Virginia has held opponents to five or less total shots eight times and single-digit shots 14 times.
• The defensive trio comprised of Robin Afamefuna, Henry Kessler, Andreas Ueland have started all 22 games and have missed a total of four minutes of game action as a unit.
• Boston College (Oct. 11) and Western Michigan – Sept. 23) each failed to register a shot on target.
• Under George Gelnovatch, the Cavaliers have reached 10+ shutouts, eight times including the National Championship seasons of 2009 and 2014.
• This marks the third time in program history Virginia has allowed fewer than 10 goals in a season (2009 – 8 in 25 games, 1988 – 9 in 22 games and 2019 – 9 in 22 games).
• The 12 clean sheets in the regular season were the most in Gelnovatch’s tenure and tied for fourth most in UVA history.
• Virginia allowed one goal through its first 10 games, the fewest in the 76-year history of the program. Last season the Cavaliers went seven games before conceding the season’s second goal, which had happened only one other time (1985).
• Andreas Ueland and Joe Bell became the 18th and 19th Cavaliers to score multiple goals in the NCAA Tournament. Ueland scored two against St. John’s and Bell tallied two in the quarters against SMU.
• Henry Kessler and Ueland are the only two Cavaliers that have played every minute of every game this season.
• Dike and Bell were both named to the TopDrawerSoccer.com Team of the Week on Monday (Dec. 9). The weekly honor was the first for Dike and Bell who have been an honorable mention three times and two times, respectively.
• Five of the nine career goals by Nathaniel Crofts have come in either the ACC (2) or NCAA Tournament (3).
• Sophomore Daniel Steedman was responsible for two assists, both off corner kicks, in Virginia’s third round match against St. John’s. It was the second multi-assist performance of the season by a Cavalier and the first in the NCAA Tournament since Scott Thomsen was credited with two against UNCW in 2014.
• After the game-winner against Campbell in the NCAA Second Round, Spencer Patton has scored three of his four goals this season against ranked foes.
• Cavalier captain Robin Afamefuna has started 45-straight games, the longest active streak on the team. Two of his four career goals have come in the ACC Tournament including a PK tally in this year’s ACC title game against Clemson.
• Sophomore Cabrel Happi Kamseu made his first start of the season in the ACC Semifinals against Wake Forest. Working through an injury-riddled year, Happi Kamseu’s two goals this year have both been game-winners, including his 82nd minute tally in the ACC Championship game. UVA only has five game-winning goals after the 75th minute, Happi Kamseu has two of them.