By Rick Eymer
The eighth-ranked Cardinal (3-1 in Pac-12 play, 10-3 overall) hosts the Utes (2-2, 13-3) on Friday at 6 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks) and Colorado on Saturday at 7 p.m.
Stanford has the nation's top blocking team, recording 3.10 per set. The Cardinal blocks 3.31 per set in four conference matches. Senior Carly Wopat leads the Pac-12 with 1.39 blocks a set, while Inky Ajanaku ranks third in the conference with 1.36 blocks a set.
Wopat's 515 career blocks rank her fourth all-time in the Stanford record books. Her 1.39 blocks a set would rank her tied for third, with Bev Oden, on the all-time Stanford list.
Sophomore setter Madi Bugg ranks second in the conference and sixth in the nation with 11.79 assists per set. Wopat (3.24), Rachel Williams (3.05), Brittany Howard (2.84), Jordan Burgess (2.37) and Ajanaku (2.33) each have more than two kills per set.
Utah ranks third in the conference in team blocks, led by Erin Redd-Brandon, who is sandwiched between Wopat and Ajanaku among Pac-12 leaders with 1.38 blocks a set.
The Cardinal has won six of seven all-time meeting with the Utes, with the lone loss coming on a five-set match in 2000.
Five days after suffering its second NorPac conference loss in the past four years, No. 13 Stanford will have a chance to avenge its defeat, hosting UC Davis on Friday at 6 p.m. at the Varsity Turf.
The Cardinal (8-3, 2-1 NorPac) will then close out the homestand Sunday against Yale (3-6, 1-2 Ivy League) at noon.
Stanford split a pair of games last weekend, defeating Pacific, 6-1, and falling, 3-2, in overtime to UC Davis, which entered the game 2-7.
Six Cardinal players scored against Pacific to extend Stanford's winning streak to 14 games over the Tigers. The Cardinal struggled to find the back of the cage against UC Davis and could not hold onto a late lead, falling to the Aggies on a goal by Jamie Garcia 5:03 into overtime.
The loss snapped an eight-game winning streak over the Aggies and was the first time Stanford had been beaten by UC Davis since its program was resurrected in 2009. It was also the Aggies' first victory over a ranked opponent in program history.
Hope Burke and Fran Tew recorded Stanford's goals against the Aggies and goalkeeper Ducie Davies made seven saves. Burke finished last weekend with a team-best six points on two goals and two assists. Davies' seven saves against UC Davis were the second-most she's made in a game this season.
UC Davis is led by Cloey LemMon with 11 points (4-3), followed by Danielle Koehne (5-0) and Garcia (3-4) with 10 points apiece. Danielle Herrington has logged a majority of the minutes in goal and holds a 3-6 record, 2.84 GAA and .627 save percentage.
Men's water polo
Stanford heads to the So Cal Tournament at UC Irvine this weekend. Play gets underway against UC Davis on Saturday at 10:50 a.m.
The fourth-ranked Cardinal (0-1, 8-2) is coming off a 20-5 victory over Santa Clara. Bret Bonnani scored six times in the contest.
Stanford hosts Indiana in a nonconference meet on Saturday at noon at Avery Aquatic Center. The Cardinal met UC Santa Cruz in a non-scoring meet last Friday.