Sports


Big stops lead to big MPSF victory for the Cardinal

Kaley Dodson scored the go-ahead goal early in the fourth period, Jamie Neushul made a key field block that led to the goal and the top-ranked Stanford women's water polo team rallied to beat No. 2 UCLA, 9-8, in a key Mountain Pacific Sports Federation match Friday.

Sophomore goalie Gabby Stone also came up big to help the Cardinal (4-0 MPSF, 18-1 overall) avenge its lone loss of the season.

A win over host Cal State Bakersfield on Saturday will clinch the MPSF tournament's top seed for Stanford, which also likely brings with it a berth in the NCAA tournament to be contested in May in Los Angeles.

The conference tournament, also in Los Angeles, begins Friday, April 25.

Stanford (18-1, 4-0 MPSF) upped its winning streak to nine and took firm control of the race for the top seed at April 25-27's MPSF Championship. The Cardinal needs only to beat Cal State Bakersfield in tomorrow's 1 p.m. contest to clinch the No. 1 seed.

The game was tied at 7 early in the fourth period when the Bruins went on a power play. Neushul blocked the shot and Stone recovered the turnover and played the ball ahead in transition to Dodson, who scored to put the Cardinal ahead for good with 6:05 remaining to play.

Stone also blocked a penalty shot with under three minutes to play. to help preserve the victory, Stanford's ninth straight since a 9-6 loss to UCLA.

Kiley Neushul added a goal following Stone's play to give the Cardinal a two-goal advantage.

Stanford made one more key defensive stop with 1:32 to go, making a key steal of a wayward pass on yet another Bruins' power play.

UCLA opened the second half with three straight goals to take a 7-6 lead, erasing Stanford's halftime edge.

The Cardinal tied the game 24 seconds later when Ashley Grossman netted her second of the game by fighting off a defender inside.

Kelsey Suggs got free on the left wing and skipped her shot into the net with three seconds left in the first period to tie the game at 2.

Olympic gold medalists Maggie Steffens and Annika Dries each scored to start the second period.

Men's tennis

Anthony Tsodikov outlasted Viktor Farkas 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (15-13) at the No. 5 position, rallying host Stanford to a thrilling, 4-3, victory over Washington on Friday in a Pac-12 Conference match.

In a competitive back-and-forth match that lasted just over four and a half hours, Stanford (11-4, 3-2 Pac-12) completed its comeback despite losing the doubles point and trailing 3-2.

Fueled by a gutsy performance on the back courts, the Cardinal picked up its second win over Washington (10-11, 1-4 Pac-12) this year and 10th in a row.

Stanford's leader with 17 overall victories, Tsodikov was in position to clinch the match only after Nolan Paige battled back for a 3-6, 7-6 (6), 6-3 victory next door at the No. 4 spot.

The Cardinal, which has made a habit of grinding out tight matches all season, has now won eight of its last 10, with the only losses on the road at No. 2 USC and No. 3 UCLA.

Early momentum in Friday's match shifted to Washington, which led 1-0 after claiming the doubles point. After the first two matches split, the Huskies prevailed 8-7 on court three.

John Morrissey evened the match at 1-1, following a 7-6 (1), 7-6 (1) triumph over Emmett Egger in a battle at the top spot of the lineup.

Robert Stineman contributed a 6-1, 4-6, 6-1 victory on court six, extending Stanford's lead to 2-1.

Washington then moved in front 3-2, collecting a pair of wins inside the stadium at Nos. 2 and 3.

Once Paige and Tsodikov were each pushed to a third set after winning the first, the Huskies seized even more confidence.

Paige's victory knotted the match at 3-3 before Tsodikov sealed the win.

Stanford returns to action Saturday in a Senior Day match against visiting Oregon at 1 p.m.

Women's tennis

Taylor Davidson clinched seventh-ranked Stanford's 4-0 victory over host Oregon in a Pac-12 Conference match Friday.

The Cardinal (7-1 Pac-12, 15-1 overall) recorded its 10th shutout of the season even playing without the services of No. 1 player Kristie Ahn.

Amelia Herring stepped in to help Stanford record the doubles point. She teamed with Carol Zhao, who won at No. 2 singles, at the No. 2 doubles spot.

Caroline Doyle, who recorded a win at No. 5 singles, partnered with Krista Hardebeck to clinch the first point at No. 3 doubles.

Hardebeck took over the No. 1 spot in Ahn's place and won the first set. Ellen Tsay and Lindsey Kostas also won their first sets. All three were trailing in the second set when the match ended.

Stanford travels to Washington State for a conference match Saturday.

Softball

Eight Stanford players combined for nine hits to propel the Cardinal to a 13-5 victory in six innings Friday night against No. 10/10 Washington.

Washington (23-11, 3-7 Pac-12) pitcher Bryana Walker was perfect through the first 4 1/3 innings, but Stanford (25-15, 2-9 Pac-12) broke through in the fifth inning with eight runs.

Jessica Plaza got the rally going with a great at-bat to draw a walk and break up the perfect game. Plaza was followed by Bessie Noll who singled up the middle for Stanford's first hit.

The Cardinal completed its offensive showcase with five runs in the sixth inning, capped by an RBI-single by Hanna Winter, to run-rule the Huskies.

Plaza had an outstanding game offensively, drawing a walk to start the Cardinal's fifth-inning rally and doubling in her next two at-bats. She finished the game 2-for-3 with three RBI, and a walk.

Kylie Sorenson (3-3) picked up the win in the circle after coming into the game as relief in the top of the second inning.

Sorenson was relieved briefly in the fifth but re-entered in the same inning to secure the victory. She allowed two runs on two hits, struck out three and allowed one walk in 4 1/3 innings.

Hanna Winter walked in the next at-bat to load the bases. Cassandra Roulund followed with the hit Stanford needed to get on the board with a two-RBI-single to right-center.

After Kaitlin Schaberg and Leah White both singled to bring in two more runs and put Stanford up 4-2, Walker was relieved by Kaitlin Inglesby.

Kayla Bonstrom wasted no time keeping the rally going, hitting Inglesby's first pitch over the centerfield fence for a huge three-run home run to give the Cardinal a 7-2 lead.

Kylie Sorenson walked in the next at-bat and advanced to second on a fielder's choice. Plaza stepped to the plate for the second time in the inning and slammed a double into the right-center field gap to score Sorenson and complete the Cardinal's eight-run fifth inning.

Women's lacrosse

Lucy Dikeou scored four goals to lead No. 12 Stanford past Oregon, 15-7, in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation women's lacrosse action Thursday.

Losses by Oregon (7-5 overall, 3-1 MPSF) and USC on Thursday dropped the number of teams undefeated in MPSF play from three to one, with Denver (6-0) remaining unbeaten only by edging San Diego State, 12-11. The results leave Stanford (10-2, 4-1) among three teams with one loss.

Dikeou has scored 10 of her team-high 21 goals in her past three games. Her four goals matched her collegiate high, which she achieved last year against James Madison and March 19 against Notre Dame.

Perhaps Dikeou's most spectacular score was a half-field run after controlling the second half draw. Dikeou's breakaway goal nine seconds into the half completed a 5-0 Cardinal run that broke a 2-2 tie. The Cardinal extended the run to 8-1 on the way to building a 10-3 lead with 9:23 left.

Kyle Fraser scored three goals and Kelsey Murray scored two, including a point-blank second-half shot set up by a spin-o-rama to evade a defender at the post.

Hannah Farr earned six draw controls, and Megan Lerner caused three turnovers and had five ground balls. Goalie Lyndsey Munoz made six saves while earning the victory.

Stanford resumes play Tuesday with a home game against UC Davis in a 7 p.m. game at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium.

Men's volleyball

he No. 4 Stanford men's volleyball team came out on top of a five-set thriller at No. 6 UC Irvine, 25-21, 21-25, 25-21, 19-25, 15-13, Friday, at the Bren Center in Irvine.

The Cardinal improves to 19-7 overall and 16-7 in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, while the Anteaters fall to 17-10 and 14-9 in conference.

Stanford, which has now won 10 matches in a row, has clinched home court advantage for the quarterfinals of the MPSF Tournament on April 19.

The Cardinal's 10-match winning streak is its longest since it won 16 in a row to close out the 1997 season with the program's first national title.

Despite being outhit by UC Irvine .269 to .256, Stanford found a way to win. The Cardinal has now won its last two five-set matches after going 0-5 to start the year.

Senior outside hitter Brian Cook paced the Cardinal with 18 kills on 40 swings with just four errors to hit .350.

Senior Steven Irvin posted a double-double with 15 kills and a match-high 13 digs. He also put down three aces and had two blocks.

Sophomore setter James Shaw totaled 45 assists, 10 digs, four blocks and four kills.

Sophomore middle Conrad Kaminski finished with nine kills and five blocks on a .375 attack percentage.

Senior opposite Eric Mochalski also notched nine kills and registered 10 digs.

Stanford completes the regular season at UC San Diego on Saturday. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Baseball

Stanford loaded the bases twice in the first five innings, but failed to push a run across as host Washington took game one of a three-game set, 6-1, Friday.

The Cardinal and Huskies square off Saturday at 6 p.m. and Sunday at 4 p.m. on the Pac-12 Networks.

Washington (22-6-1, 11-2 Pac-12), which is ranked in the top 10 of all four national polls, countered by scoring five runs, all with two outs, off of starter Brett Hanewich. The Huskies scored four in the second frame on four hits and a hit batter to pull ahead.

Hanewich (1-3) took the loss after working 5 1/3 innings and allowing the five runs on eight hits.

Stanford's only run came on a solo blast over the 365 sign in left field by Alex Blandino in the seventh inning. The junior third baseman has homered in back-to-back games for the second time in his career.

The Cardinal (11-15, 3-7 Pac-12) was limited to four hits over the first six innings by UW's Jared Fisher (3-3).

Danny Diekroeger, Austin Slater, Alex Dunlap and Wayne Taylor all singled off the junior, who stranded seven base runners.

— Stanford Athletics

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