By Paul Kennedy
Only Saint Louis (10) and Indiana (8) have won more NCAA Division I men's
titles than Virginia, which won its seventh national championship on Sunday. It wasn't pretty, however, as the Cavaliers parked their bus in front of their goal and held off UCLA, which had entered
the game with 11 goals in four NCAA Tournament games, for a 4-2 shootout win following a scoreless draw after 110 minutes. 1.
This was not the Virginia we all loved.
There was a decade or so in the late 1980s and early 1990s when UVA was the team to watch. Bruce
not only had the players -- Claudio Reyna
, Mike Fisher
, A.J. Wood
-- but they came out and attacked and attacked and attacked. George Gelnovatch
, an assistant on many of
those Arena teams, had a different idea to approach Sunday's College Cup.
Playing with eight or nine men behind the ball, the Cavaliers showed little willingness to attack UCLA even
though the Bruins had shown they were very vulnerable defensively, allowing eight goals in their first four NCAA Tournament games. In a game of few concrete chances, UCLA outshot Virginia, 15-9. Those
nine shots were a lot better than UVa had done in the semifinals against UMBC when it managed just three shots.
Gelnovatch now has two national championships, both won in shootouts after
finals that ended scoreless in Cary. In 2009, Virginia beat Akron, which played 11 future MLS players. 2. This was supposed to have been UCLA's
UCLA head coach Jorge Salcedo
knows all about shootouts. As a freshman on a 1990 UCLA team with Joe-Max Moore, Cobi Jones, Brad Friedel
, Chris Henderson
and Mike Lapper
-- all U.S. World Cup players --
he scored the decisive penalty kick goal as the Bruins beat Rutgers in a shootout after their game ended 0-0.
Since taking over as head coach in 2004, Salcedo has endured nothing but
frustration, however. This was supposed to be the Bruins' year. Their No. 2 seed was the highest in Salcedo's 11 years at UCLA, and the field was cleared out for the Bruins as the No. 1 seed Notre
Dame (beaten by Virginia), No. 4 Maryland, No. 5 Indiana and No. 6 Stanford all lost in the second round and No. 3 Michigan State went out two rounds later.
Nothing could stop the Bruins
on the road to the final. They trailed San Diego in the second round and won, held off Cal 3-2 after leading 2-0 and 3-1 in the third round, beat North Carolina in a shootout after blowing a 3-1 lead
in the second half and defeated Providence 3-2 in overtime after trailing 2-1 in the semifinals. In the Carolina match, UCLA trailed in the fifth round of the shootout when Earl Edwards Jr. stopped Glen
's shot. On Sunday, Edwards again had a chance to extend the shootout against Virginia but Riggs Lennon
this time made no
mistake. 3. College Cup takes on international flavor.
The face of men's college soccer is changing with more players than ever before
being recruited by the country's top programs from aboard. It was evident at the College Cup, which had the biggest international flavor in recent memory. Pablo Aguilar
, who had set up Darius Madison
for the winning Virginia goal in the semifinals, hails from Guatemala via IMG Academy. UCLA started
three Germans: All-American Leo Stolz
, Larry Ndjock
, who scored twice in the semifinals, and sophomore utility man Felix Vobejda
. The most exciting player at the College Cup -- at least in the semifinals -- was Bruin winger Abu Danladi
freshman from Ghana via the Right to Dream program. New Zealand U-17 World Cup product Jordan Vale
started for UCLA in the semifinals against Providence, whose
squad featured two German starters and an English captain, plus a Norwegian, the Friars' leading scorer entering the final, as the lone sub off the bench.
Increasingly, top programs are
being forced to scramble as they lose top players early in their careers or before they even step foot on campus. Jordan Allen
, Virginia's top freshman on last
year's College Cup team, left after one semester to sign with Real Salt Lake. In each of the last two years, Paul Arriola
and John Requejo Jr.
signed letters of intent with UCLA only to turn pro with Tijuana in Mexico. TRIVIA.
Since NCAA seeded 16 teams in 2003,
No. 16 Virginia (2014) and Indiana (2012) are lowest seeds to win national title. Unseeded UC Santa Barbara won in 2006, beating UCLA. Dec. 14 in Cary, N.C. Virginia 0 UCLA 0 (Virginia
wins 4-2 on penalties).
C.Brown. M.Brown. S.Sullivan, K.Sullivan, Thomsen, Wharton, Aguilar, Corriveau, Rozhansky, Zinkham, Madison.
Subs: Lennon, Foss, Bird, Hayward. UCLA --
Edwards, Vobejda, Contreras, Amick, Gasper, Howe, Stolz, Iloski, Ndjock, Tusaazemajja, Danladi. Subs: Raygoza,
Chavez, Vale, Zerboni, Simmons. Att.:
-- Wharton, goal; Thomsen, saved; Hayward, goal; Foss, goal; Lennon, goal. UCLA
-- Iloski, goal; Zerboni, hits crossbar; Raygoza, hits
crossbar; Ndjock, goal. Dec. 12 in Cary, N.C. Virginia 1 UMBC 0.
Goal: Madison (Aguilar) 5. Virginia --
C.Brown. M.Brown. S.Sullivan, K.Sullivan, Thomsen, Wharton, Aguilar, Corriveau, Rozhansky, Zinkham, Madison. Subs: Bird, Lennon, Foss, Hayward.
Heavner, Fernandez, Williams, Ballo, Becker, Scott, Kansaye, Hauck, Ho, Harris, Banjo. Subs: DiCesare, Pratt, Caltabiano. Att.:
9,502. Dec. 12 in Cary, N.C. UCLA 3 Providence 2 (OT).
Ndjock 43, Ndjock (Danladi) 81, own goal 105; Steeves (Ballenthin) 65, Steeves (Ballenthin) 74. UCLA --
Vobejda, Contreras, Amick, Gasper, Simmons, Stolz, Iloski, Vale, Tusaazemajja, Danladi. Subs: Howe, Ndjock, Zerboni, Raygoza, Chavez. Providence --
Broome, Adler, Ballenthin, Bialy, Jecewiz, Towler, D.Machado, Neustadter, F.Machado, Gressel, Steeves. Sub: Naglestad. Att.: