Lucy Dikeou scored four goals, including the winner with 4:05 left, to give No. 13 Stanford an 11-10 victory over No. 6 Notre Dame in South Bend on Saturday.
"They're fighters," Stanford coach Amy Bokker said. "They go down swinging every time they step on the field."
With the score tied, 10-10, and Stanford up a player up because of a Notre Dame penalty, Dikeou found an opening on the right side and bounced a shot past goalie Liz O'Sullivan.
"Lucy has great speed and is really quick with the stick," Bokker said. "She creates a lot of opportunities, not just for herself, but for her teammates."
Stanford's Hannah Farr won the draw, but the Cardinal was unable to run out the clock when a missed shot gave Notre Dame possession. In the tense final stretch, the teams exchanged turnovers before Stanford's Megan Lerner drew a charge with 17 seconds left and the Cardinal was able to run out the clock.
During the turnover sequence, Adrienne Anderson defended one of Notre Dame's top offensive threats out of the play.
"It was good team defense," Bokker said. "They took good angles to the ball and were ready to help if they needed to."
Indeed, Lerner and Rachel Kalick closed down on Notre Dame's Stephanie Toy, with Lerner getting to the spot first to draw the foul and create the turnover. Lerner then leaped into the air in triumph.
Notre Dame (8-4) represented the highest ranked team Stanford will play during the regular season. The game also was a rematch of last year's 7-6 Stanford victory in the first round of the NCAA tournament, Stanford's first-ever NCAA victory.
The game featured four lead changes and four ties. However, Notre Dame appeared to take command when it took a 9-6 lead with 21:12 left on the 29th goal of the season and third of the game by freshman Cortney Fortunato.
Stanford countered with a goal by freshman Kelsey Murray, who scored twice within 6:06 to draw Stanford even at 9-9, and Alexandra Crerend capped the rally by putting the Cardinal in front, 10-9, with 9:49 left.
"Possession was the key," Bokker said. "In the first half, we were losing draw controls."
Stanford made adjustments, with Ashlynn Goerz playing a big role. The freshman earned two draw controls herself, but also did a strong job boxing out and allowing her teammates to gain possession.
Dikeou's four goals tied her collegiate career high. She also caused four turnovers, had two ground balls, and earned a draw control. Murray and Farr each scored twice.
The rally was similar to Stanford's rally from a 10-4 deficit at then-No. 14 Georgetown on the way to an 11-10 double-overtime victory on March 9. In fact, Stanford has beaten all four opponents currently ranked in the IWLCA top 20 and could be in line to play host to an NCAA tournament game if the Cardinal can take care of business in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation play.
That task, however, will be difficult, with a visit from 2013 regular-season champion Denver on Friday (7 p.m.) at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium.
Stanford withstood steady showers Saturday to shoot a 1-over at The Goodwin, its lone home tournament of the spring season.
The 281 at the par-70 Stanford Golf Course was good enough to help the Cardinal maintain its lead over the 18-team field.
Stanford (-11) leads second-place UCLA by six strokes, with Oregon in third at 2-under. Washington maneuvered its way into fourth with a 7-under Saturday.
Patrick Rodgers buried a 17-footer on 18 for one of his two birdies on the back nine to finish the day at 1-under. The junior remains ahead of all players with an 8-under through two rounds.
Should Rodgers hold on to his lead through Sunday, it would give him a third straight victory and two shy of Tiger Woods' school-record 11 career titles.
Maverick McNealy shares second with USC's Rico Hoey at 5-under, with both players shooting a second-round 69. McNealy stumbled on 15 with a triple bogey but answered with three straight birdies to close his day.
Cameron Wilson went 1-under on the back nine to finish at even-par. He moved up five spots into a tie for 12th with eight others at 1-under for the tournament.
On a rainy Saturday, the Stanford sand volleyball team fell to No. 3 Hawaii (5-0), No. 6 UCLA (5-0) and Santa Clara (3-2) at the ACSR Sand Courts in Stanford, Calif. The Cardinal drops to 0-6 on the season.
Hawaii went 3-0 on the afternoon, sweeping all of its matches. Former Cardinal indoor player Karissa Cook is a member of the SandBows top pair, which defeated Stanford's Brittany Howard and Carly Wopat, 21-16, 21-10.
Stanford sophomores Grace Kennedy and Dana Ritchie, who were playing in exhibition matches, went 2-1 on the afternoon. The pair defeated UCLA's Cosani/Miller, 20-22, 21-19, 18-16 and Santa Clara's Chloe Lott and Chloe Sliger, 21-15, 21-11.
After being swept in its first two duals, the Cardinal won two of the five matches against the Broncos. Howard and Wopat, playing in the top spot, came back to defeat Nikki Hess and Taylor Milton, 21-23, 22-20, 15-13. Stanford's No. 2 team of Lauren Birks and Jordan Burgess also posted a win against Santa Clara, defeating Sabrina Clayton and Danielle Rottman, 21-17, 13-21, 15-9.
UCLA finished the day 2-1, while Santa Clara was 1-2. All four teams will be back in action on Sunday.
The Pac-12 match between fifth-ranked Stanford and visiting Arizona State was postponed Saturday.
The match was rescheduled for 11 a.m. Sunday.
Stanford's Pac-12 game with visiting Oregon was postponed due to rain on Saturday.
The contest was rescheduled for Sunday at 1 p.m.
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