Covering the Land of Lincoln

Recapping Virginia’s Athletic Achievements in the ACC in 2021-2022

The 2021-2022 Virginia athletics year comes to an end this weekend with nine UVA athletes competing in the 2022 NCAA Track & Field Championships, the final collegiate sporting event for the Cavaliers this season. With ACC competition wrapped up in each of Virginia’s 25 NCAA sports, let’s take a look at how each of UVA’s teams fared in the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2021-2022. 

The Cavaliers won three ACC regular season championships in women’s soccer, men’s lacrosse, and men’s tennis, and won three ACC postseason championships in women’s swimming, women’s rowing, and men’s tennis.

Men’s Cross Country

In the ACC Cross Country Championships, the men’s team finished eighth in the field. Rohann Asfaw finished 13th in a field of 135 runners as the fastest individual runner for the Cavaliers. Jacob Hunter and Derek Johnson also finished in the top 50 on the individual leaderboard. 

Women’s Cross Country

The women’s team finished in tenth place in the ACC Championship 6k race. Freshman Margot Appleton finished 31st in the race out of 138 total runners to lead the way for her team.

Field Hockey

Record: 12-9, 3-3 ACC

Virginia’s field hockey team finished fifth in the ACC during the regular season with a 3-3 conference record. In the ACC Championship, the Cavaliers beat Boston College in the quarterfinals and then managed to upset No. 1 seed Louisville to advance to the title game, but they fell to the third-seeded North Carolina Tar Heels by a score of 1-0.

Virginia had two players honored on the All-ACC team. Senior Amber Ezechiels made First Team and senior Annie McDonough received Second-Team honors.

Football

Record: 6-6, 4-4 ACC

Virginia’s 4-4 record in conference play was good for a fourth place finish in the ACC Coastal after ending the season and the Bronco Mendenhall era on a four-game losing streak, including a pair of tough loses to Coastal rivals Pitt and Virginia Tech. 

The Cavaliers placed eight players on All-ACC teams. Dontayvion Wicks and Jelani Woods made First Team, Keytaon Thompson, Olusegun Oluwatimi, and Nick Jackson made the Second Team, Brennan Armstrong and Billy Kemp made Third Team, and Bobby Haskins received an honorable mention.

Men’s Soccer

Record: 6-9-3, 2-5-1 ACC

The men’s soccer team placed sixth in the ACC Coastal division with two conference wins on the season and seven total points. As the No. 11 seed in the ACC Tournament, the Cavaliers fell to Wake Forest in the first round. The ACC had eight teams get bids to the NCAA Tournament, the most of any conference, and three of those teams advanced to the Elite Eight, so it was a highly competitive conference. 

Leo Afonso received Second-Team All-ACC honors, and Asparuh Slavov made the All-Freshman team.

Women’s Soccer

Record: 18-3-2, 8-0-2 ACC

The Virginia women’s soccer team went undefeated in ACC play, capturing the program’s third ACC regular season championship. UVA earned the No. 1 seed in the ACC Championship, but fell in the title game to No. 2 Florida State, who went on to win the National Championship a few weeks later. 

Virginia racked up the ACC honors with Diana Ordoñez winning ACC Offensive Player of the Year and head coach Steve Swanson getting the nod as the conference’s Coach of the Year. Lia Godfrey was a First Team member along with Ordoñez. The Cavaliers added three Second Team members in Samar Guidry, Laurel Ivory, and Alexa Spaanstra as well as two Third Team members in Haley Hopkins and Taryn Torres.

Volleyball

Record: 8-20, 1-17 ACC

Virginia volleyball finished 15th in the ACC in the first season under head coach Shannon Wells after the team cut its previous season short.

Brooklyn Borum delivered a fantastic first-year campaign and was named to the ACC’s All-Freshman Team. Borum is the first Cavalier to earn any ACC award since Sarah Billiard made the All-Freshman Team in 2017. 

Men’s Basketball

Record: 21-14, 12-8 ACC

Virginia finished the regular season sixth in the ACC standings after going 12-8 in conference play. The Cavaliers held off Louisville in the second round, but UVA fell to North Carolina in the quarterfinals of the ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament in Brooklyn. 

Jayden Gardner was recognized as a member of All-ACC Third Team and Kihei Clark and Reece Beekman both received honorable mentions. Beekman also came in second for ACC Defensive Player of the Year and was therefore a member of the All-ACC Defensive Team.

Women’s Basketball

Record: 5-22, 2-14 ACC

The women’s basketball team finished 14th in the ACC standings after winning two out of its last three games of the season, notching victories over Duke and Pittsburgh. In the ACC Tournament, the Cavaliers fell to Wake Forest in the first round.

Men’s Swimming & Diving

At the ACC championships, the men’s swim team finished in fourth place. A few highlights included Jack Aikins finishing second in the 200-yard backstroke and Matt King, Connor Boyle, and Matt Brownstead finishing second, third, and fourth in the 100-yard freestyle.

Women’s Swimming & Diving

In addition to winning a second-straight national championship, the Virginia women’s swim team took home its third-consecutive ACC Championship after winning 14 events.

Alex Walsh was named the ACC Women’s Most Valuable Swimmer after winning three individual events and three relays, two of which set American records. The Cavaliers also won all five relays at the meet.

The ACC honors kept coming for the women’s team, as Kate Douglass won Women’s Swimmer of the Year, Gretchen Walsh won Women’s Freshman of the Year, and Todd DeSorbo won Women’s Swimming Coach of the Year.

Men’s Indoor Track

The men’s indoor track team placed tenth at the ACC Championships. Owayne Owens won the triple jump for the second year in a row and Wes Porter finished second in the mile as two highlights for the Cavaliers.

Women’s Indoor Track

The women’s team managed a fifth place finish in the ACC Indoor Track Championships. Maria Deaviz earned a personal best in shot put that also gave her a first place finish, and Jada Seaman placed third in the 200-meter race.

Wrestling

Record: 4-6, 1-4 ACC

The Virginia wrestling team went 1-4 in conference duals during the regular season. The ACC Championships were held in Charlottesville at John Paul Jones Arena and the Cavaliers finished fifth, matching the seed the team had entering the tournament.

Justin McCoy earned All-ACC honors in the 165-pound weight class by finishing second, one of six UVA wrestlers who placed during the event. Eight Cavaliers locked up automatic bids to the NCAA Championships by virtue of their performances at the ACC Wrestling Championships. 

Baseball

Record: 39-19, 17-13 ACC

After a hot start, UVA endured a drop-off in the second half of the season, losing four of its last six ACC series and finishing the season 17-13 in ACC play. Virginia ended up third in the ACC Coastal standings. 

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After earning the fifth seed in the ACC tournament, the Cavaliers fell to Florida State and Notre Dame and therefore were unable to advance to the semifinal round out of pool play.

Jake Gelof and Alex Tappen earned First-Team All-ACC honors after anchoring the Cavalier offense all season, as both players eclipsed the 70 RBI mark. Pitcher Brian Gursky made Second Team and Griff O’Ferrall and Casey Saucke were members of the ACC All-Freshman team after impressive seasons in the first spring in Charlottesville. 

Men’s Golf

At the ACC Men’s Golf Championship, the Cavaliers placed seventh overall after finishing ten under par as a team. UVA finished above Virginia Tech (11th) in the team leaderboards, so the Cavaliers earned a point in the Commonwealth Clash. 

Women’s Golf

The women’s team was seeded fourth entering the ACC Championship and the Cavaliers made it to the semifinals of match play before falling to the eventual ACC champion, Wake Forest.

Jennifer Cleary and Amanda Sambach made the 15-member all-conference team. 

Men’s Lacrosse

Record: 12-4, 5-1 ACC

With the exception of a loss at Duke, the Cavaliers dominated the ACC this season, turning in a 5-1 record and capturing their 19th ACC Championship and second in the last four years. 

Virginia nearly swept the ACC annual awards. Cole Kastner won Defensive Player of the Year, goalie Matthew Nunes won Freshman of the Year, and Lars Tiffany was named the Coach of the Year.

Additionally, Matt Moore received his third-straight selection to the All-ACC team, and teammates Connor Shellenberger, Jeff Conner, Cole Kastner, and Petey LaSalla joined him.

Women’s Lacrosse

Record: 10-10, 3-5 ACC

Virginia finished sixth in the ACC during the regular season after going 3-5 in the conference and holding a 10-10 record overall. While a .500 record isn’t considered amazing, Virginia finished the season ranked No. 16 in the Inside Lacrosse national poll because of the strength of schedule involved in the ACC. 

In the ACC Championship, the Cavaliers managed to upset the No. 3 seed Syracuse 18-14 in the quarterfinals. However, the team fell in the semifinals to Boston College, who ended the season as the runner-up for both the ACC and NCAA Championship. 

Rachel Clark was honored as the Freshman of the Year in the ACC and also made the All-ACC Second-Team and the All-Freshman team after scoring 60 goals in her first collegiate season. Her teammate Ashlyn McGovern made First Team and Aubrey Williams also made Second Team with Clark. Finally, Abby Manalang and Kate Miller received All-Freshman team honors.

Rowing

Virginia continued its absolute dominance in the ACC rowing scene by winning its 12th consecutive ACC Championship (and 20th in the last 21 years) after winning four of the five Grand Finals.

Coach Kevin Sauer won ACC Coach of the Year. The First Varsity Eight crew of Lauren Benedict, Eva Fronhoffer, Kelsey Gems, Kate Kelly, Nicola Lawless, Sonja Schlosser, Alli Terblanche, Leia Till, and Vivi Van Ingen won ACC Crew of the Year. Schlosser, Lawless, Terblanche, and coxswain Van Ingen made First Team, and Till made Second Team from the First Varsity Eight squad.

Softball

Record: 28-26, 13-11 ACC

UVA softball finished sixth in the ACC after winning 13 games in conference play, the most in a season since 2010. In the ACC Championship, the Cavaliers fell short against Florida State in the quarterfinals, falling 5-3.

Third baseman Sarah Coon was a member of the All-Freshman Team in the ACC.

Men’s Tennis

Record: 28-5, 12-0 ACC

Virginia men’s tennis ended the season on a tear, winning the last 23 games. The Cavaliers went a perfect 12-0 in the ACC, clinching a second-consecutive regular season title. UVA went on to win back-to-back ACC Tournament Championships, coming from behind to beat North Carolina 4-3 in the title match. Ryan Goetz was named the MVP of the ACC Championship. The Cavaliers then advanced in NCAAs to Champaign, Illinois and won their fifth national championship. 

For the third season in a row, a Virginia player was named ACC Men’s Tennis Player of the Year as Inaki Montes carried the torch from Carl Söderlund, who won the award in 2019 and 2021. Andres Pedroso was named the ACC Coach of the Year for the third-consecutive season he won his first national title as UVA head coach. 

Montes and Chris Rodesch earned First-Team All-ACC honors, while Ryan Goetz and Jeffrey von der Schulenburg were named to the Second Team and Gianni Ross was selected to the Third Team. 

Women’s Tennis

Record: 23-6, 10-3 ACC

Recording a 10-3 record in ACC play, the UVA women’s tennis team finished in a three-way tie for third place in the conference standings. Virginia earned the No. 4 seed in the ACC Championship, where the Cavaliers beat NC State before pulling a massive upset over No. 1 North Carolina 4-2 in the semis behind wins from Emma Navarro, Sara Ziodato, and Natasha Subhash. In a hard-fought championship match, UVA fell to Duke to end the run. 

Emma Navarro became the first player in UVA history to be named the ACC Women’s Tennis Player of the Year. Navarro earned First-Team All-ACC honors and teammates Natasha Subhash and Elaine Chervinsky were named to the All-ACC Second Team and Third Team, respectively. 

Men’s Outdoor Track & Field

In the ACC Outdoor Track Championship, the men’s team placed third overall with 80 points.

Claudio Romero won the discus gold medal for the second straight year while also setting a meet record and a facility record. Ethan Dabbs won his third-straight javelin gold medal with the best throw in the country this season (prior to NCAAs) as well as an ACC Championship record and a facility record.

Women’s Outdoor Track & Field

The women’s outdoor track team finished seventh at the ACC championships. Maria Deaviz won gold in shot put for the Cavaliers, and Mia Barnett set a facility record in the prelims of the women’s 1,500 meters.

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