The practice helped the Cavaliers overcome a sluggish start and poor first half to dominate the second half, senior McKayla Grasham said Saturday.
Grasham scored a game-high four goals in the Cavs’ record-setting 16-7 Mountain East Conference win over Charleston.
The 14th straight MEC win for Virginia-Wise (8-5, 6-0) tied the league mark for the most consecutive MEC victories. Virginia-Wise can break the record Thursday with a win at West Virginia Wesleyan.
HAVING YOUR MIND RIGHT
Grasham said the Cavs usually do a particular meditation before games, but Saturday they failed to do so.
“When we went into the game the first time (against Charleston) we usually do like a braver meditation. And we didn’t do that this time. We had something else, which is equivalent but obviously not our habitual pregame,” she said. “So at halftime, we went and did our braver and then after that, the energy obviously came out to the field and our energy was there. The passion was there, where it lacked in the first half.”
Having the right mindset and energy came through big for Virginia-Wise, which trailed 6-3 at halftime.
PLAYING THEIR GAME
The Cavs scored three quick second-half goals to tie the game at 6 with 27:29 left to play.
Charleston regained the lead just a minute later on the third goal of the game by Brianna Rock, but Virginia-Wise dominated the rest of the way.
The Cavs controlled the pace and stayed on the attack most of the second half, when they scored 10 unanswered goals.
“We obviously weren’t playing our game the first half and weren’t playing like we’ve played all year,” said Virginia-Wise coach Meghan Dennehy. “After halftime, we took a little reboot and talked about how we play and how we needed to go out in the second half, and obviously that showed and the scoreboard reflected it with a win.
“I just think we just came out a little sluggish. We obviously play better when we play our game and that’s what we were able to do in the second half.
“We had to go out there play confident,” Dennehy added. “We were playing a little frazzled in the first half and we were a little unsure of where we were and we weren’t necessarily on the same page, and I think that’s the reason why the first half looked the way it did.”
BY THE NUMBERS
Jessie French and Kristin Gobbi each had three goals for Virginia-Wise, and sisters Caroline and Ellie Earnshaw added two apiece. Jessica Apgar finished with four ground balls, giving the Cavs senior 200 for her career.
Virginia-Wise goalkeeper Elsa Girardo recorded nine saves. Charleston’s Kyra Tye had 19.