The West Virginia women’s soccer team picked up another top-10 win by beating rival Virginia, 1-0, through Isabella Sibley’s 86th minute goal.
Assisted by freshman Lilly McCarthy, a squared ball to Sibley was put into the top left corner of the net past Cavaliers’ goalkeeper Laurel Ivory. From there, the Mountaineers were able to hang on for the final four minutes to close out their first victory over Virginia since 2010.
The opening half was somewhat uneventful for both teams, with Virginia having the better of the play but lacking quality in the final third. Possession stats would largely favor the Cavaliers in the opening 45 minutes as the Mountaineers mostly found themselves scrambling to gain possession back.
On one of the few chances that West Virginia (10-2, 7-2 Big 12) created in the first half, it was denied a penalty kick after Chloe Adler looked to be taken down in the box.
Adler and several substitutes added hunger to a lackadaisical West Virginia squad toward the end of the half. Adler was subbed in at defensive midfield to take over for Juliana Lynch, Jadyn Chee replaced Sibley, Aaliyah Scott came on at midfield for Stefany Ferrer-vanGinkel and Grace Smith replaced Alina Stahl which added life to the Mountaineers.
Things changed quickly once the second half started, as it was Lauren Segalla and the Mountaineer starters putting the pressure on Virginia (10-4-1, 5-3-1 ACC). While both sides failed to put many chances on goal, the second half saw several attacking waves and better possession from West Virginia.
With the Mountaineers almost conceding to Virginia’s dangerous Diana Ordonez, the Cavaliers worked themselves back into the match around the 65-minute mark. Ordonez scored two goals in her only competitive appearance against the Mountaineers prior to this match.
However, it would be West Virginia that would be victorious after a ball fumbled around Scott and McCarthy, with the latter picking it up and squaring it to the English midfielder for the winning goal. The goal was Sibley’s second of the season and the fifth of her career.
Despite all the substitutions up top and through the midfield, WVU head coach Nikki Izzo-Brown left her back line completely unchanged as Julianne Vallerand, Gabby Robinson, Jordan Brewster and Mackenzie Aunkst played the entire match. Vallerand has slid into the right back spot for Nicole Payne, who made her spring season debut Saturday, subbing in at right wing after picking up an injury over the winter.
The Mountaineers have one remaining match as they travel to Charlottesville, Virginia, to take on Virginia again before moving into the NCAA Tournament.