By Rick Eymer
Palo Alto Online Sports
John Tanner has another busy weekend scheduled for his Stanford women's water polo team as the top-ranked Cardinal continues its eight-match road trip.
Stanford (9-0) gets four games out of the way this weekend at the UC Irvine Invitational, opening against Cal State Bakersfield at 9 a.m. Saturday at Corona del Mar High.
The Cardinal will meet either Arizona State or San Jose State in the second round. The tournament continues Sunday.
The top eight ranked teams will be in attendance including No. 3 UCLA, winner of five of the last six NCAA titles, defending champion and second-ranked USC, and Stanford.
The Cardinal traveled to Stockton last Sunday, where it beat host Pacific, 15-4. Melissa Seidemann scored four times in the contest, while Kaley Dodson and Annika Dries each added two goals.
Dodson earned her second Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Newcomer of the Week honor as a result.
Dries and Sacred Heart Prep grad Pallavi Menon share the team lead, each with 15 goals. Seidemann and Dodson are next with 14 apiece. Alyssa Lo has 12 goals.
Kate Baldoni and Amber Oland have split time in the goal for the Cardinal, with Baldoni leading in saves, 45-36.
Stanford has outscored its opponents by a 118-34 margin. The Cardinal has scored at least 10 goals in every contest and never allowed more than nine, including holding seven opponents to five or fewer.
The Roadrunners (3-9) have lost their past three matches, the last one in overtime to Occidental. They own a victory over Marist, which reached the NCAA Final Four a few years ago.
Stanford opens MPSF play the following week, playing at San Diego State and at Long Beach State.
The Cardinal's next home match is March 26 against UCLA.
Stanford hosts its final home game of the regular season on Tuesday when Seattle comes to town for a nonconference contest at 7 p.m.
There's no need for a Senior Day celebration though, as coach Johnny Dawkins has no seniors on the roster.
The Cardinal (6-9, 13-13) was looking to end a three-game losing streak in Thursday night's game at Oregon State.
Stanford gets its first look at the oddly-designed court at Oregon on Saturday afternoon, which appears as an optical illusion on television. At times you just can't see the forest for the trees.
Fourth-ranked Stanford opens the second half of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation season with home matches against No. 8 UCLA Friday and No. 3 UC Santa Barbara Saturday at Maples Pavilion.
Stanford (7-4, 10-4) sits in fourth place in the MPSF, with UCSB (9-6) right behind at 7-5 and UCLA (8-8) tied for 10th in the 12-team conference at 3-7.
Stanford snapped a 13-match losing streak at Firestone Fieldhouse by sweeping No. 9 Pepperdine in Malibu last weekend.
UCLA is the most decorated program in the country with 19 national championships, all under coach Al Scates, now in his 49th year.
The Bruins are one of the most dangerous serving teams in the conference, ranking second in the MPSF with 1.31 aces per set. Weston Dunlap leads the team in hitting percentage (.474) and total kills (137).
Stanford trails in the all-time series 61-15, but the Cardinal has gained the upper hand in recent years at home, winning their past three meetings.
The No. 3 Gauchos are ranked higher than they've ever been since they were in the same position on Feb. 19, 2007. UCSB has won four of its past five.
Scott Slaughter leads the MPSF in hitting percentage, at .490, and the Gauchos are second in the conference in hitting percentage (.346), assists per set (12.69), and kills per set (13.57).
Stanford (8-2) hosts the Stanford Nike Invitational, beginning Friday, at Smith Family Stadium. Participating teams include Colorado State, No. 24 Kentucky, Memphis, North Dakota State and UC Davis.
The Cardinal home opener Friday features a doubleheader, with games against Memphis and North Dakota State starting at 1:30 p.m.
Stanford plays two more Saturday, meeting No. 24 Kentucky and Colorado State, and meets UC Davis on Sunday.
The 16th-ranked Cardinal finished 4-1 at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic in Las Vegas last week.
Sophomore Teagan Gerhart hit .500 over the weekend, with two home runs and her first career triple. She also went 3-1 as a pitcher, recording 19 strikeouts. Ashley Chinn pitched a one-hitter against No. 3 Tennessee.
Stanford opened the season with two freshmen in the starting lineup. Designated player Danielle Miller is hitting .265 and is second on the team with three home runs and 10 RBI, while and left fielder Corey Hanewich has a .259 average with two home runs and nine RBI. Fellow freshmen Jaime Millwood hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the sixth inning against Utah State for her first collegiate hit.
Track and field
Stanford will compete in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation championships at the University of Washington's Dempsey Indoor Facility this weekend.
The meet gets underway Friday at 12:30 p.m. with the men's weight throw.
This year's meet features 11 programs from the Pac-10 and Big West Conferences, including first-year women's participant UC Irvine.
The Oregon women won their first-ever MPSF Championship last year, while the UCLA men repeated their title from 2009. Stanford placed second in each gender, while the California men and Arizona women earned the bronze.
On the women's side, Oregon is the nation's top-ranked team with 199.68 points. Arizona is ranked 12th (66.74), Arizona State 20th (39.19) and Stanford 21st (39.00). The Stanford men rank seventh nationally (77.73), followed by No. 12 Oregon (75.75), No. 15 Arizona (58.17), and No. 16 Washington (57.76).
Nick Amuchastegui and Zack Giesen are two of Stanford's top wrestlers and could bring home some hardware from Sunday's Pac-10 championships at Oregon State's venerable Gill Coliseum.
The championships are split into two sessions beginning with the opening round at 8 a.m. The second round starts at 6 p.m. and the championship round is scheduled for 8 p.m.
Stanford (8-2) has a pair of nonconference matches this weekend in Los Angeles.
The Cardinal plays at No. 5 UCLA on Friday at 1:30 p.m. and goes to No. 9 USC for a Saturday match at 1 p.m.
Eighth-ranked Stanford beat then No. 2 Trojans, 4-2, during last weekend's National Team Indoor Championships. Both Pac-10 teams were knocked off in the first round and meet in a consolation match Saturday.
Top-ranked Stanford, fresh off its National Team Indoor Championship, returns home to defend its 169-match winning streak at Taube Tennis Center against visiting Oregon Friday at 1:30 p.m.
Washington State visits for an 11 a.m. match Saturday. The Cardinal (9-0) has won its last 26 overall, dating to last Feb. 26.
Mark Appel gets the starting nod for Stanford (3-1) in its series opener at Vanderbilt (5-0) Friday night. The teams meet again Saturday and Sunday.
The Cardinal bullpen has allowed just three runs in 15 2/3 innings this season. A.J. Vanegas allowed two runs in Stanford's 3-2 victory over California on Tuesday. Menlo School grad Kenny Diekroeger drove in two of the three runs.
Fourth-ranked Stanford travels to No. 7 Michigan for a dual meet on Saturday night.
The Cardinal finished third at the Stanford Open last Saturday.
Stanford looks to extend its season-opening winning streak to four when Harvard visits for a Sunday match at noon.
The 13th-ranked Cardinal (3-0) upset fifth-ranked Syracuse, 11-10, last Sunday. Emilie Boeri was named Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Player of the Week for her contribution in the victory.
Stanford travels to Arizona on Saturday for its final dual meet of the season. The Cardinal finished second at last weekend's IUW Invitational in San Antonio. Olivia Morgan and Maria Koroleva won the duet competition.