TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – An early first half goal by Dagny Brynjarsdottir proved to be enough as fifth-ranked Florida State (10-1-0, 3-0-0 ACC) defeated third-ranked Virginia (10-1-0, 2-1-0 ACC) 1-0 Sunday afternoon inside the Seminole Soccer Complex handing the Cavaliers their first loss of the season.
The goal came on a tremendous strike from the senior captain in the ninth minute of play as Brynjarsdottir blasted a left-footed shot from 20 yards out into the lower right corner of the net for her seventh goal of the season. The game-winner was Brynjarsdottir’s second of the season and 16th of her career. Cheyna Williams was credited with an assist on the play.
“Dagny had a heck of a strike for a goal and it was the difference,” Florida State head coach Mark Krikorian said. “It was huge. It was a big game against two very good teams. And you certainly want to be the team scoring the goal. Dagny is a big part of what we are doing and I thought she had another very good game.”
“Cheyna played me through,” said Brynjarsdottir. “We were playing high pressure. I beat their defender and hit it with my left foot and into the corner for the goal.
“It was important to get the goal early so we could settle down a little bit. Virginia is a very good team and we always know it is going to be a good battle when we play against them.”
The win was FSU’s third straight over UVa at home while the shutout extended the Cavaliers scoreless streak in Tallahassee to 398:34. UVa had scored a goal in 44 consecutive games before Sunday’s match, a streak dating back to a 1-0 overtime loss to the Seminoles in Tallahassee in 2012.
Virginia, who entered the match as the lone undefeated and untied team in the nation, also saw its school-record 17-match, ACC regular season win streak come to an end. UVa’s last conference loss in the regular season came at the hands of the Seminoles back in 2012.
“It was a great battle between two top ranked teams,” added Krikorian. “I thought our fight, our competitive spirit was excellent. It certainly wasn’t a work of art but sometimes in the game you have to adjust to your opponent and the conditions of the game. Obviously, we adjusted our game plan a little bit to take in consideration Virginia’s quality and I thought for the most part we defended quite well.”
The Seminole defense limited the Cavaliers to just four shots on goal Sunday afternoon holding the reigning MAC Hermann Trophy winner Morgan Brian to just three shots including zero shots on goal. Cassie Miller played all 90 minutes between the posts to pick up her seventh shutout of the season. The redshirt freshman keeper finished the match with three saves.
Both teams finished the first half with four shots apiece as the Cavaliers lone shot on goal came in the 24th minute. Following a Cavalier corner kick, Alexis Shaffer tried to sneak a low-lining shot from the top of the 18-yard box inside the left post, but Michaela Hahn was there on the post with a brilliant team save to keep the Seminole lead at 1-0.
“It was huge,” said Krikorian on the save by Hahn. “You hope your kids will have discipline in those situations and she did. Fortunately, she was able to knock the ball out and preserve the shutout for us.”
“I just knew that on the post anything close to me I have to boot it out,” said Hahn. “I thought the ball was going out but I didn’t want to take the chance. I just tried to clear it as far as possible.”
Virginia came out of the break forcing the tempo and applying the offensive pressure early on in the second half. After UVa was called offside, the restart by Miller was won on a header by Shaffer, who played the ball forward to Makenzy Doniak. Doniak tried to bend a shot to the far post from the left side but Miller came through with a diving save.
The Seminoles looked to increase their lead by two in the 71st minute but a header by Brynjarsdottir sailed just wide of the left post. The Seminoles dialed up a quick corner kick as Isabella Schmid played the ball out to Megan Campbell, who one-timed a cross into the box where Brynjarsdottir came running in with the header.
Less than two minutes later, the Cavaliers were on the attack as Doniak tried to beat Miller from the left side but Kirsten Crowley came through with a tremendous block which led to a Cavalier corner.
On the ensuing corner, Danielle Colaprico blasted a shot from 16 yards out on the left side that was saved by Miller.
Florida State did a tremendous job of maintaining possession and keeping the ball in its attacking third down the stretch. The lone chance for the Cavaliers in the final 10 minutes of the match came from Campbell Millar as she tried to chip a shot over the head of Miller but the Seminole keeper was there for the save to nail down the victory.
Florida State will return to the pitch on Saturday, Oct. 4 when they travel south to face Miami at 7:00 p.m. Seminole fans can always stay up-to-date with in-game progress through the official twitter page of the Seminole soccer team (@FSU_Soccer).