CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Will Bates (Sr., Chester, Va.) scored in the 58th minute and the Virginia men’s soccer team was stout on defense in picking up a 1-0 win over Duke Friday night at Klöckner Stadium. The match was the ACC opener for both squads and was played in front of 4,230 spectators, marking UVa’s largest home crowd since Dec. 4, 2009 (4,900 vs. Maryland in NCAA quarterfinals).
“It’s great to get three points in conference play,” Virginia head coach George Gelnovatch said. “It’s a huge win in conference play, especially at home, and we did not give up a goal or really a good chance.”
After a defensive struggle in the first half with the teams combining for no shots on goal, Virginia (2-2, 1-0 ACC) struck paydirt in the 57th minute. After Chris Somerville (So., West Chester, Pa.) ran down a long ball on the left flank over the Duke defense, he served it across the box. Marcus Salandy-Defour (Fr., Kensington, Md.) tracked the ball down near the goal line and tapped it back to Bates, who sent the ball into the far corner of the goal from six yards out for the score.
The goal was Bates’ 35th career score. He now is two goals shy of the top 10 in Virginia history. The assist marked Salandy-Defour’s first career point.
UVa finished with an 11-6 shots advantage; both teams put two shots on goal. UVa held a 3-2 edge in corner kicks and also committed 11 fouls, compared to nine for Duke (1-3, 0-1).
Virginia goalkeeper Spencer LaCivita (So., Raleigh, N.C.) was not tested much, but he made a pair of saves. Duke keeper James Belshaw made one save.
Virginia continues its six-match homestand at 7 p.m. Tuesday when it plays host to Mount St. Mary’s.