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Zach Pekale | NCAA.com | October 16, 2019

College soccer: Here's how No. 1 Virginia handed Florida State its first ACC loss

Check out the best women's soccer plays of the week

Through 14 matches, No. 1 Virginia has scored 42 goals. Its offense is impressive, occasionally overshadowing a defense that could be even better. The Cavaliers have conceded only four goals this season and recorded another clean sheet in their 1-0 victory over No. 5 Florida State.

An important facet of Virginia's style is turning defense into offense. UVA creates turnovers and utilizes open space well to spread opponents out. While forward Meghan McCool's goal didn't come during a counterattack, it was the result of one. Following a save by Cavaliers' keeper Ivory Laurel, UVA broke out in transition before earning a corner. The ball was played to the edge of the six-yard box and volleyed to McCool for the winner off of the senior's head and into the left side of the net.

To slow down Florida State, Virginia needed to limit the Seminoles' scoring chances. FSU averages close to 19 shots per game. Of those, nearly eight tend to be on target. Florida State's 14 shot attempts were comparable to its season average but Florida State only got four on target.

Sunday marks Virginia's fifth consecutive clean sheet, a shutout streak of 453 minutes that's helped keep the Cavaliers unbeaten. On the other hand, this is Florida State's first time being held scoreless in 2019. More notably, the loss is the Seminoles' first loss of ACC play and first since Sept. 1 — snapping a nine-game winning streak.

Up next, Virginia hosts Notre Dame on Oct. 20 while Florida State faces Miami on Oct. 18.

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