#7 Virginia Tech Women's Soccer 2014 Preview

Virginia Tech Hokies

Overall Rank: #7
#5 ACC
#7 Virginia Tech Women's Soccer 2014 Preview
Virginia Tech Team Page


Virginia Tech started the 2013 season unranked. After a 5-0-1 start, the Hokies cracked the top 25, but they were nowhere near done yet. Heading into the NCAA Tournament, Virginia Tech was 16-4-2. And all five of their losses on the year came against North Carolina, Virginia and Florida State, who were ranked in the top three in the nation at the time they beat Virginia Tech. The Hokies made a great run in the NCAA Tournament, advancing past UMBC, West Virginia, Santa Clara and Duke to reach the College Cup. Then Coach Chugger Adair and company ran into Florida State for the third time…and lost for the third time.

2013 Record: 19-5-3, 9-3-1
2013 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Charles “Chugger” Adair

Returning Leaders:
Goals: Murielle Tiernan, Sophomore, F, 11
Assists: Kelsey Loupee, Senior, M, 10
Shots: Murielle Tiernan, Sophomore, F, 63
Saves: Caroline Kelly, Junior, GK, 3

Other Key Returnees: F Shannon Mayrose, M Ashley Meier, M Katie Yensen, M Ellie Zoepfl, M Candace Cephers, M Morgan Conklin, D Danielle King, D Jodie Zelenky, D Jordan Coburn

Key Losses: F Jazmine Reeves, F Ashley Manning, M Taylor Antolino, D Nicolette Young, GK Dayle Colpitts

Even without Jazmine Reeves and her 11 goals, this should be a pretty potent offense. Murielle Tiernan is coming off of a great freshman campaign in which she netted 11 goals and added five assists. Tiernan is a big, tough target in the box and she will be in for a big sophomore season. And Tiernan will get help from Ashley Meier, Katie Yensen, Shannon Mayrose and Kelsey Loupee. Meier, a junior midfielder, scored nine goals and is almost always up and involved in the offense. Yensen was amazingly efficient during her junior season, with seven of her shots on goal ending up in the back of the net. She also added five assists. But it is Loupee who is the best passer in the midfield and led the team with ten assists in 2013. Mayrose was an effective striker off of the bench and could step into a starting role this year, but she will have competition from another talented group of newcomers. Virginia Tech will find another striker to join Tiernan up top, but the true strength is in the midfield. There are so many talented seniors in the midfield this team should be able to control possession against any team in the country.

Controlling possession will help the defense, but this unit does need to replace keeper Dayle Colpitts. She started all 27 games in 2013 and allowed just 21 goals while making 78 saves. The only keeper with any experience is Caroline Kelly. Last year she played a total of just 72 minutes, but she did start five games back in 2012. Redshirt freshman Blayne Fink and true freshman Kaylyn Smith will get a long look from Coach Adair too. In any event, it will not be easy to replace Colpitts.

Final Projection:
The Hokies should have time to sort out any issues they may have in the back and up top while breaking in new forwards to join Tiernan. The schedule is pretty light, but does include quite a few road games, which could be tricky at times. Of course, the beef of the schedule is in the brutal ACC. Trips to North Carolina and Florida State are going to be tough, but at least the Hokies get Virginia and Notre Dame at home. This group may not be able to go 9-3-1 in conference play again, yet the talent is there to be a serious competitor in the toughest conference in the nation.

Projected Postseason: NCAA Tournament

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 2.07 (36th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Goals-Against Average: 0.786 (43, 4)
Shutout Percentage: 0.444 (57, 4)
Save Percentage: 0.790 (131, 6)

Madness 2015 NWSL Draft Rankings:
#28 Shannon Mayrose


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