Chris Viall got the party started and three relievers made sure it would have a happy ending as the Stanford baseball team evened its three-game series with Kansas Saturday, beating the Jayhawks, 5-4, in a nonconference game.
Viall did not allow an earned run in his 4 2/3 innings of work. Josh Hochstatter (2-1) piteched out of a fifth-inning jam and received credit for the victory.
A.J. Vanegas pitched 2 2/3 solid innings and Tyler Thorne got the final outs for his second save.
"It's always good to win," Stanford coach Mark Marquess said. "It was a tough loss last night. We had a lot of chances to win and couldn't get it done, so it was good today."
Stanford jumped to a 5-0 lead, but the Jayhawks crept within one with the help of Cardinal miscues.
Vanegas, who has pitched one inning in each of his first three appearances, needed just 25 pitches to retire eight of the 11 batters he faced.
"He felt good," said Marquess. "This is the longest we would go with him. He didn't throw a lot of pitches; he has been throwing a lot of strikes. That's good to have him healthy. That will help us down the road."
The Cardinal bullpen was able to hold the lead after Stanford scored one in the first inning, another in the second and three more in the third. Austin Slater picked up an RBI single and Jonny Locher added a sac fly, before the breakout inning.
Two walks and a hit by pitch loaded the bases in the third and the Cardinal capitalized in a situation that haunted the team in the late innings last night.
Alex Dunlap and Brant Whiting both singled through the infield to drive in runs a day after Stanford was 0-5 with the bases loaded in extra innings during a 4-3 13-inning loss.
Tommy Edman grounded out to drive in another run.
Stanford did all of its damage off of Kansas starter Robert Kahana (1-2), who went three innings and allowed five runs on five hits.
"We're not playing very good baseball to be honest with you," Marquess said. "Five errors last night, three today. We need to play better than that, we should be able to play better than that. We just have to play better."
The Cardinal gave Kansas an extra out in the fifth inning, which resulted in three unearned runs against Viall. The freshman was relieved by Hochstatter after giving up a two-out three-run double to Connor McKay.
Two base runners reached for Kansas in the ninth, but Thorne induced a 6-3 double play to end the game.
Whiting and Dunlap collected two hits for Stanford, while five different Cardinal registered RBI.
Stanford and Kansas will play the rubber match of the three-game series Sunday at 12:30 p.m.
Saturday was Senior Day for Stanford, the final home meet of the year with No. 4 Ohio State, No. 10 California and Arizona State in town.
The meet was the final home meet for seniors Paul Hichwa, Cale Robinson and Chris Turner while redshirt junior Sean Senters was also honored prior to the contest.
With emotions running high for the four seniors and two top-10 opponents in the building, the meet did not get off to a good start for the Cardinal. They started off with the floor exercise and scored 73.2, but a 71.9 on pommel horse in the second rotation put them behind Ohio State. The performance was not how the Stanford seniors saw their final home meet playing out.
"Floor and horse weren't the best, but Paul (Hichwa) and I circled the guys up and said 'our house, our meet, time to compete' and the next four events were lights out, the best we have had all year," said Robinson.
The pep talk proved to be a shot in the arm for the Stanford team as they went on to score over 75 points on the rings, vault and parallel bar before ending with a 74.95 on the high bar. The 75.65 on vault is the top score in the country this season while the 75.7 on parallel bars is the second best. The fantastic finish ended up leading to Stanford scoring a season-best 446.45.
"We put up a season high score so I couldn't ask for a better final home meet in Burnham," said Robinson.
Robinson did not start the meet off well with the team's low score on the floor, but he quickly put it behind him to rally the team. He ended up posting two good scores on parallel bars and high bar to cap off the regular season.
Turner also started off slow with a score below his expectations on pommel horse. Like Robinson he would go on to excel in the final two events, including a 15.35 to lead the team on high bar.
"I was pretty nervous," said Turner. "With it being my last time in Burnham I wanted to show everybody the best I could do. After horse it was smooth sailing and an awesome way to finish up."
By the time Hichwa got around to competing, he and Robinson had sparked Stanford to some high scores. Hichwa was the final man to compete for the Cardinal, making his 14.8 on high bar extra special.
"I am very happy to be a part of this team," said Hichwa. "Every year has been a different experience. We are a brotherhood. Having my last meet here and being the last man to compete in the last event was pretty fun."
Senters, who has one year of eligibility remaining, helped kickstart the success. He was key to the nation's top vault score with his team-best 15.5.
Ohio State finished second with a score of 442.40, four points back of Stanford. Cal took third with a 432.45 and Arizona State posted a 406.10 for fourth.
Sophomore Dennis Zaremski may have had the best day with his two high scores on rings and parallel bars. He scored the highest total of the day for Stanford with a 15.75 on rings. He followed that up with a 15.45 on parallel bars.
Junior Mike Levy had a good all-around day in his practice for next year's senior day. Levy had the top score in floor with a 15.1, scored a 15.55 on rings and finishing up with a 14.7 on vault.
Freshman Akash Modi continued his success. He was the only Stanford gymnast to post over a 15.0 on pommel horse with a 15.35. He also had a 15.35 on vault, a team-high 15.65 on parallel bars and a 15.1 on high bar.
Stanford will have three weeks until its next competition. The Cardinal will be in Norman, Okla. for the MPSF Conference Championships March 29. They will compete against Oklahoma, California and Air Force.
Women's water polo
Third-ranked Stanford women's water polo cranked out 38 goals Saturday in Fresno, sweeping a doubleheader with wins of 18-4 and 20-4 over No. 9 Loyola Marymount and Fresno Pacific, respectively.
Maggie Steffens scored six goals to pace the Cardinal (13-1) over both games while the Neushul sisters, Kiley and Jamie, combined for nine goals, five coming from Jamie. All three Cardinal goalies saw action Saturday, combining for 13 saves.
The day opened with the Cardinal jumping out to a 9-0 lead on Loyola Marymount within the game's opening 10:23. Steffens and Ashley Grossman each scored twice in the middle of the period, with their goals bookended by goals from Jamie and Kiley Neushul. Kiley went on to score two of the next three Cardinal goals to make it 9-0 with 5:37 remaining in the half.
Laura Lopez and Ivana Castro sandwiched a goal from Kelsey Suggs with goals of their own to get the Lions on the board and make it 10-2 just over two minutes before halftime. The Cardinal would add one more before the break, however, as Cory Dodson found the back of the net with 1:06 to go.
Steffens, Annika Dries and Melena Masson scored over the opening 2:20 of the second half to fuel a 5-0 run for the Cardinal which effectively iced the game.
Gabby Stone and Julia Hermann each played a half in goal, with Stone making six saves and Hermann stopping a pair of shots.
After a brief cool-down following the win over LMU, the Cardinal took on Fresno Pacific. After the teams traded goals in the opening minutes, the Cardinal got three straight goals from Dani Jackovich, Gurpreet Sohi and Jamie Neushul to end the first period up 4-1.
Steffens, Cassidy Papa, Kiley Neushul and Masson each scored within the first 2:55 of the second frame to make it 8-1 Cardinal before Alyssa Stevens got one back for Fresno Pacific. Yet goals from Jackovich and Papa kicked off a 7-0 run for Stanford that bled into the third period, giving the Cardinal a 15-2 lead.
Rachel Johnson would score a goal to open the fourth period while Jackovich would net the final two to cap off her four-goal performance.
Junior Emily Dorst started and played the first half against the SunBirds, making a pair of saves. Hermann took over for the third period and made a save while Stone worked the fourth, stopping two shots.
Stanford climbed from fourth to second in the Southern Highlands Collegiate Masters standings after collecting a 9-over 297 on Saturday.
At 18-over through two rounds, Stanford trails only host UNLV (+16) while holding a four-shot lead over both UCLA and Alabama.
The Cardinal matched Arizona State with a Saturday-best 9-over, its second such score in as many rounds at Southern Highlands Golf Club. Sunday's action for Stanford will begin at 9:30 a.m. (PT).
"We fought hard through the front nine, but 17 and 18 are some tough closing holes and gave us trouble," Stanford coach Conrad Ray said. "Our guys are hungry to finish this off tomorrow."
Defending champion Patrick Rodgers entered the day tied for 14th but streaked through with a 3-under 69.
Rodgers, who sits alone in first place among individuals at 1-under, was 4-under on the front half and had an up and down back nine with four bogeys and three birdies.
Rodgers will be grouped Sunday with UCLA's Jonathan Garrick, who is second overall at 1-over.
Cameron Wilson is tied for fourth at 3-over after a round of 75 at the par-72 course. Wilson played the front nine and even and closed with a double bogey and bogey on the final two holes.
On the par-4 fifth, Wilson's drive on the 359-yarder sailed the water and came to rest 10 feet past the green.
No. 9 Stanford remained unbeaten through eight matches, collecting a 5-2 victory over No. 16 California on Saturday afternoon.
In a match that was originally scheduled for last Saturday but postponed due to the threat of rain, Stanford (8-0, 0-0 Pac-12) claimed the doubles point and held on for a pair of three-set victories.
One of those came from Carol Zhao, who clinched the match at the No. 3 spot with a 6-3, 6-7 (6), 6-4 triumph over Denise Starr.
Stanford, which has now defeated three top-25 opponents on the road, took a 1-0 lead thanks to an 8-4 victory from its No. 2 duo of Taylor Davidson and Ellen Tsay.
California (6-4, 0-0 Pac-12) knotted the match at 1-1 following a 6-3, 6-2 victory from Zsofi Susanyi on court two.
Kristie Ahn followed with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Anett Schutting at the top spot of the lineup to put Stanford back in front 2-1.
Tsay added a 6-4, 6-3 win over Klara Fabikova at the No. 5 spot, bringing the Cardinal closer to clinching.
Lynn Chi's 7-5, 6-3 victory over Davidson on court four allowed the Golden Bears to trim the deficit to 3-2.
Zhao then provided the deciding point when she outlasted Starr in three sets.
Caroline Doyle added a 6-2, 0-6, 7-6 (8) victory to round out the match.
Saturday's contest does not factor into the conference standings. The rematch on April 19 at Taube Family Tennis Stadium is the Pac-12 counting match.
Stanford is back in action on March 14, hosting Washington in its Pac-12 opener.
Stanford battled tough course and weather conditions Saturday and shot a 19-over 303 in the second round of the Darius Rucker Intercollegiate at Long Cove Club.
Duke leads the 17-team field at 7-over, while Stanford is 32-over (297-303) and in 10th place.
"This was a good day for us, and it exposed some weaknesses for us to work on," Cardinal coach Anne Walker said. "Our short games have gotten a little rusty, and that opened the door to a high score. We have to tighten things up moving forward and keep our ceiling lower."
Casey Danielson led all Cardinal shooters with a 74, cleaning things up with a 1-under back nine after going out at 4-over. Danielson is tied for 26th.
Mariah Stackhouse is tied for 16th at 5-over after rounds of 70-77. Stackhouse couldn't get into a groove with a 3-over on both the front and back halves.
Playing its first dual match in two weeks, Stanford blanked Furman, 7-0, on Saturday afternoon at Taube Family Tennis Stadium.
After competing in the Pacific Coast Doubles tournament last weekend, the Cardinal returned to the court for the first time since dropping a 7-0 decision to No. 9 California on Feb. 22.
Stanford (4-2, 0-0 Pac-12) collected wins on courts one and three to claim the doubles point and grab a 1-0 lead.
The Cardinal notched five straight-set victories in singles, including Yale Goldberg's 6-2, 7-5 clincher at the No. 6 spot.
It was Stanford's second shutout of the year, as the Cardinal also blanked Hawaii on Jan. 29.
Following its 16-day break for exams, Stanford returns to the court on March 24, hosting Nevada at 12 p.m.
No 22/17 Stanford defeated Brigham Young and Portland State on the third day of the Louisville Slugger Classic to improve to 21-6 on the year.
Kylie Sorenson, Erin Ashby and Kayla Bonstrom propelled the team offensively, accounting for 13 of Stanford's 20 hits.
Sorenson went 4-for-5 with a double and two walks while Ashby went 5-for-7 with a double and three RBI. Bonstrom was 4-for-6 on the day with a double, a walk, and four RBI.
Madi Schreyer (16-4) started the first game in the circle against BYU, while Kylie Sorenson got the first save of her collegiate career. Schreyer contributed six innings of work, allowing five earned runs on seven hits with one walk while striking out two. Sorenson entered the circle in the top of the seventh, not allowing a hit.
Stanford began to generate runs in the top of the fourth when Ashby and Jessica Plaza hit back-to-back singles up the middle, followed by Tylyn Wells who reached on an error to load the bases.
Hanna Winter brought Ashby in on a single and then Leah White beat out a hit to the shortstop to score Plaza and put Stanford up 2-0.
The Cougars responded in the top of the fifth after Schreyer walked Megan Arnold and allowed a hit up the middle by Sydney Broderick.
Pinch-runner Lacey Millett-Hofstedt scored on a passed ball, and Broderick advanced to third. Mercedes O'Connor then singled to right field to score Broderick and knot the score at 2-2.
Stanford answered with two more runs in the bottom of the bottom half of the inning to regain the lead, 4-2.
BYU went ahead in the top of the sixth when Coco Tauali'i led off the inning with a bunt single. Gordy Bravo then singled through the left side and Hofstedt reached first after being hit by a pitch.
On a wild pitch, Tauali'I was able to reach home and then Bravo scored on a grounder back to the pitcher. Another wild pitch brought home the last run for the Cougars to go up 5-4.
Down by one in the bottom of the sixth, Sorenson led off with a double down the left field line. Corey Hanewich pinch-ran and scored on a single by Bonstrom to right field.
Cassandra Roulund followed by roping a triple to score Bonstrom.
Roulund provided the final run of the game on a passed ball to extend Stanford's lead to 7-5. The Cardinal was able to hold BYU scoreless in the top of the seventh to secure the win.
Against Portland State, Sorenson (2-0) started in the circle to pick up the second win of her career in five innings of work. She allowed three hits, walked two and struck out two.
At the plate, the Cardinal continued its strong performance, scoring nine runs to run-rule Portland State.
Bonstrom supplied the Cardinal with three hits and three RBI, while Ashby contributed two hits and two RBI.
The Cardinal returns Sunday afternoon at 12:15 p.m. to face the UC Davis Aggies and looks to finish strong before heading into Pac-12 Conference play next Friday against Cal at home.
Defending NCAA champion Stanford has been invited to attend a celebration of 2012-13 NCAA Championship teams at the White House, with President Barack Obama offering congratulations and recognizing each program individually.
The NCAA Champions ceremony is scheduled for Monday, March 10, on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, D.C. The official event begins at approximately 11 a.m. PT with a tour of the White House.
Members of last year's Cardinal team, along with coaches and staff, will join 18 other national championship teams in the ceremony.
Stanford has made six visits to the White House, most recently in 2010 along with the Cardinal men's volleyball team.
The ceremony and President Obama's remarks will be streamed live on www.whitehouse.gov/live.
Also being honored on Monday: Duke men's lacrosse, Indiana men's soccer, Oklahoma State men's cross country, Princeton fencing, Princeton field hockey, Alabama men's golf, UC Irvine men's volleyball, Colorado men's cross country, Kansas women's outdoor track and field, Minnesota women's hockey, North Carolina lacrosse, North Carolina women's soccer, Oklahoma softball, USC men's water polo, USC women's water polo, Virginia men's tennis, West Virginia rifle and Yale men's hockey.