Sarah Flynn and Lauren Schmidt each scored in the final seven minutes to lead the 13th-ranked Stanford women's lacrosse team to a dramatic, 13-12, victory over visiting Notre Dame in a nonconference match Sunday.
The 10th-ranked Irish, fresh off a victory over California, took a 12-11 led with 7:24 remaining after erasing an early four-goal deficit.
"I am really excited to get this win," Stanford coach Amy Bokker said. "It was important to set the tone for our season by beating a top 10 team."
Flynn scored in traffic after taking a pass from Anna Boeri to tie the score. Schmidt, the two-time reigning Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Player of the Year, scored an unassisted goal with 4:36 remaining to play from inside the 12-meter fan to give the Cardinal a win in its season opener.
Notre Dame played a player down most of the rest of the way, making it easier for the Stanford defense to hang onto the victory.
Emilie Boeri led the Cardinal with three goals, while Schmidt, Leslie Foard and Karen Nesbitt each added a pair of goals.
It was "one of the best team efforts I have ever coached," Bokker said.
Stanford returns to the field Wednesday for a 7 p.m. contest against visiting Fresno State in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation opener for both teams.
Second-ranked Stanford set a school record by rallying in the final rotation to beat No. 8 Michigan and No. 10 Nebraska in a triangular meet before 3,219 at Crisler Arena in Ann Arbor on Sunday.
Stanford (13-0) is off to its best start in school history as Allyse Ishino, Alyssa Brown, and Nicole Pechanec recorded consecutive 9.90 scores on the uneven bars to make up a deficit and give the Cardinal 196.800 points, edging Michigan's 196.500 and Nebraska's 195.400.
Stanford trailed Michigan 147.600-147.475 after three rotations and suffered a fall on a dismount early in the final event. But the Cardinal responded to record its highest bars score of the season (49.325) and win for the third time in five meets when tied or trailing going into the final event.
"The team again showed their toughness," Stanford coach Kristen Smyth said. "They are incredibly strong and talented, and covered for each other when they needed to be covered."
The meet was the second in a three-day stretch for Stanford, which began Friday with victories over No. 6 Oregon State and No. 10 UCLA at the IGI Chicago Style Invitational at Chicago's Navy Pier.
The weekend helped approximate the NCAA Championships, which also takes place in the Midwest (Cleveland) and includes two team performances in as many days at the event, which begins April 14.
Stanford travels to Arizona for a Pac-10 meet Friday.
"This is a rough patch of the schedule for us," Smyth said. "But the team has really improved and handled itself well against one of the hardest schedules in the country. To do as well as we're doing is exciting to see."
Stanford gymnasts tied or exceeded seven season bests and four collegiate career bests. Sophomore Nicole Dayton scored a career vault of 9.85 and freshman Kristina Vaculik did the same with a 9.85 on bars. Brown's bars score tied her career best and freshman Shona Morgan tied her best beam of 9.85.
"This gives us confidence that can help us in the postseason," Smyth said.
Spence Patrick won his bout at 184 pounds to help Stanford beat visiting Arizona State, 28-11, in a Pac-10 match Sunday at Burnham Pavilion.
Patrick's 3-2 victory over Jake Meredith gave the Cardinal (4-2, 9-9-1) an overwhelming 22-3 advantage.
Zack Giesen followed with a 10-3 victory at 197 pounds before the Sun Devils won two of the final three matches.
Stanford competes at the Pac-10 championships at Oregon State beginning Feb. 27.
Teagan Gerhart and Jenna Rich each hit a home run in the first inning and Corey Hanewich hit a three-run homer in the third inning as Stanford beat Nevada, 10-2, Sunday at the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe.
Ashley Chinn (3-0) picked up the pitching victory for the 18th-ranked Cardinal (4-1), which goes to Las Vegas for the UNLV Louisville Slugger Desert Classic next weekend. Stanford opens with Utah State and Portland State on Friday.
Stanford grad Scott Lipsky and partner Rajeev Ram won the doubles title at the SAP Open with a 6-4, 4-6, 10-8 victory Sunday over Xavier Malisse and Alejandro Falla.
Milos Raonic won the singles title, beating top-seeded Fernando Verdasco, 7-6 (6), 7-6 (5).