Rice soccer fell to No. 13 Virginia on Wednesday night, ending their postseason run in the Sweet 16.
A remarkable NCAA Tournament run came to an end for Rice soccer late on Wednesday night. A weather delay in a previous game pushed back what would become the Owls’ final game of their season, a 2-0 loss to No. 13 Virginia in the Sweet 16.
Rice was on the defensive from the start against Virginia, holding the Cavaliers scoreless through the first 35 minutes of play before Diana Ordonez broke through with a penalty kick in the 36th minute. She would add a second goal in the 67th minute and a third in the 81st minute, completing a hat trick with minutes to spare in regulation.
Virginia led Rice in shots 16-2, shots on goal 6-1 and corners 8-0. Most importantly, they edged Rice in scoring 3-0. For as strong as the Rice back line had been all season, it wasn’t able to outlast the onslaught from their ACC foes this time around. Virginia became the fifth ACC squad to clinch a spot in the quarterfinals with the victory.
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The end of the season is bittersweet, but the heights this program was able to reach still deserve recognition. Rice became the first Conference USA program to reach the Sweet 16 since 2011 when UCF took down North Carolina, advancing to the quarter finals.
Rice soccer will finish its 2021 season with a final record of 14-3-1, tying a school record for wins set in 2004 (and matched in 2014). Their streak of 11 consecutive matches without a loss (10-0-1) also came to an end.