Nov. 14, 2009

Courtesy of Virginia Athletics

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - The second-ranked and second overall seeded Virginia field hockey team earned its 19th win of the season, defeating Richmond 3-0 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday at the Turf Field.

The Cavaliers move on to play at 2 p.m. Sunday against the winner of Michigan State and Delaware for the right to move on to the NCAA semifinals.

The team's 19th win tied the school record for the most victories in a season. The Cavaliers previously recorded 19 wins in 1978 and tied it again in 1997.

After the game was tied 0-0 at halftime, Virginia came out in the second half with goals from freshman Tara Puffenberger and seniors Traci Ragukas and Lauren Elstein.

"Our defense created some good opportunities," Virginia head coach Michele Madison said. "We just stuck with it until we were able to score. I give a lot of credit to the Richmond goalie."

Puffenberger's goal at 38:09 put Virginia up 1-0. Ragukas was credited with the assist, passing into the middle of the circle where Puffenberger put it past Richmond keeper Jacki Raithel. It was Puffenberger's 10th goal of the year.

The Cavaliers scored again eight minutes later. Ragukas scored her ninth of the season in a redirect off an Inga Stöckel pass. Elstein rounded out the scoring in the 53rd minute, tipping the ball in after Stöckel blasted the ball towards the net from the top of the circle.

Virginia outshot the Spiders 20-3 for the game, including a 14-1 margin in the scoreless first half. Ragukas led UVa with six shots, while Paige Selenski had four. The Cavaliers also recorded three penalty corners and did not allow Richmond to take a corner.

"Floor (Vogels) and Charlotte (van den Broek), along with Shelly (Edmonds) and Taylor (Swezey) were solid in the back," Madison continued. "They held strong and I know they are going to have a big job tomorrow."

Raithel finished with six saves in the cage for Richmond. Sophomore Adrienne Ostroff and junior Kim Kastuk each played a half for the Orange and Blue.