Men’s soccer falls, women’s soccer finishes strong

Virginia Tech lost at home for the first time this season to North Carolina on Sunday. (Virginia Tech sports photography)

Last week, Virginia Tech’s men’s and women’s soccer teams completed their home slates, both heading into the playoffs. The women’s team beat Boston College on Sunday, while the men’s team was edged out by UNC. Volleyball, meanwhile, had another winless weekend as it continues its search for its first conference victory.

Men’s football

It was not the planned senior night of No. 13 Virginia Tech (9-3-3, 3-3-1 ACC).

For the first time this season, the men’s soccer team was shut out and lost a game at Thompson Field, losing 2-0 to North Carolina on Sunday, October 24.

Sunday was unusual for the Hokies, who failed to break through the Tar Heels defense all night and committed 10 fouls. Both teams had nine shots, although North Carolina recorded more shots on goal with three compared to the Hokies’ two.

From the start, goalkeeper Ben Martino did what he does best: saves. With the game still scoreless, North Carolina got a penalty in the 37th minute, but Martino dove to his right and refused the shot.

But the lightning didn’t strike twice for Tech. Once again, after a foul from Sivert Haugli in the box, UNC attempted a penalty in the 53rd minute. This time, he beat Martino to give the Tar Heels a 1-0 lead.

Injuries injured VT in the match as midfielder Tyler Taber and defenseman Welnilton Da Silva Jr. left the match with respective injuries. With the two on the bench, North Carolina found the back of the net in the 77th minute, putting the game out of Tech’s reach.

The loss ended a six-game winning streak at home for Tech, who had conceded just four goals for Thompson this season.

Next, the Hokies will travel to the 12th Pittsburgh on Friday night to face the Panthers for their final regular-season game of the season. It can be broadcast on ACC Network Extra at 7 p.m.

Women’s football

After an offensive explosion that ended in five goals for Virginia Tech (10-5-2, 4-3-2 ACC) against Miami, the offense was a little calmer in their 1-0 victory over the Boston College Sunday afternoon, which came full circle for Tech.

It was first-year midfielder Emma Pelkowski’s right foot that made the difference to the win after scoring a goal and an assist in the 5-0 win over Miami on Thursday night.

Emma Pelkowski (26) scored Virginia Tech’s lone goal against Boston College on Sunday. (Virginia Tech sports photography)

After midfielder Emmalee McCarter and forward Allie George advanced the ball down the straight sideline, Pelkowski received the ball from George’s cross at the near post and found the back of the net four yards, beating the BC goalie Wiebke Willebrandt.

With the win, Virginia Tech took 10 wins this season, reaching the double-digit winning tally for the 11th time in head coach Chugger Adair’s tenure. After the victory, Tech closed its gap in the ACC standings by two points behind Clemson, who is in sixth place and last in the ACC tournament.

Meanwhile, goalie Alia Skinner made six saves on Sunday and earned her fifth clean sheet of the season.

Forward Tori Powell, however, nearly doubled Tech’s lead in the 37th minute when she was dragged into the box. After the ball came out of his right foot, it bounced right off the post, despite the missed penalty.

Virginia Tech visits Syracuse on Thursday at 7 p.m. for its ACC final against the Orange. To qualify for the ACC tournament, the Hokies will need to win, one loss to Clemson and one loss or draw to North Carolina.


The Hokies are still looking for an ACC victory. (Virginia Tech sports photography)

It’s been almost a month since Virginia Tech (9-13, 0-10 ACC) last won a set – the third set against Boston College on October 1. Since then, the Hokies have lost 23 straight sets in eight games.

VT is still chasing their first conference win of the season. Over the weekend, the Hokies lost two games, one to Florida State and the other to Miami at Cassell Coliseum.

Against Florida State on Friday night, Tech was blown away and pretty much uncompetitive in all straight sets, losing 25-14, 25-19 and 25-14. But center tackle Angel Robinson left his mark on the ground, delivering six kills out of 16 without errors.

After losing 11-4 in the first set, the Hokies played their best set in the second, tying the score eight times before conceding it when the Seminoles started to move away at 20-18.

Sunday’s game provided a similar story when Miami crossed Hokies soil with a sweep, beating them 25-17, 25-15 and 25-18.

Away forward Cera Powell led the way in VT’s offense with 10 kills on 33 swingings and registered her eighth double-double outing of the season. Miami, however, edged Tech, .211-.019, and led in knockouts, 40-25.

Next, Virginia Tech will travel to Charlottesville to take on Virginia in the Commonwealth Clash on Friday at 7 p.m. ET. After that, a trip to Pittsburgh’s No.4 is in the works on Sunday afternoon with a first service at 1 p.m. Both matches can be streamed on ACC Network Extra.

About Julius Southworth

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