Nationally No. 7-ranked Stanford completed an undefeated women's lacrosse season in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation with a 21-9 victory over UC Davis on Wednesday. The Cardinal improved to 14-1 overall and a perfect 6-0 in conference play to win the regular-season conference title.
The Cardinal struggled early in the game as UC Davis came out with a burst of energy. The Aggies jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead and led 6-5 at the 18:33 mark in the first half before Stanford began to control play.
Karen Nesbitt scored on a free-position shot at the 17:18 mark in the half to start a run of eight consecutive Stanford goals. During the run, only Lauren Schmidt scored multiple goals as the Cardinal used seven different goals scorers to put the game out of reach.
UC Davis managed one goal before the half to end the run, but the Cardinal still led 13-7 at the break. Schmidt and Leslie Foard led all first-half goal scorers with a hat trick. Sarah Flynn and Maggie Sachs also had multiple goals in the period as the Cardinal outshot the Aggies, 19-16.
Annie Read helped Stanford extend the lead making seven saves in the half on the way to her 14th victory of the season. The Cardinal won 12 of 21 draw controls in the period and 19 of 32 for the game. Foard continued to be Stanford's top weapon on draw controls with four more to her name.
To begin the second half, Stanford went on another run to put the game further out of reach. Stanford scored six straight goals to being the period and eight of 10 in the half to build the lead to 21-9. Catherine Swanson moved up from defense to earn a second-half hat trick, while Schmidt scored her game-high fourth goal.
In all, Stanford would have 10 goal scorers, while Jacqueline Candelaria joined her teammates with a hat trick, as well.
Lyndsey Munoz came on to play the second half in goal and made five saves of her own, while allowing just two goals.
The Cardinal already had clinched the No. 1 seed in the MPSF tournament, but now finish as the undefeated champion of the conference.
Stanford will commence a four-game series with Northwestern University beginning in the 2019 season.
The two schools will meet in four consecutive seasons, with the first game set for Sept. 14, 2019 in Evanston, Ill. The series will then shift to Stanford for the 2020 campaign. The 2021 game will be contested on Sept. 18 in Evanston before moving back to Stanford Stadium on Sept. 17, 2022.
Stanford and Northwestern have played six times previously with Stanford holding a 3-1-2 advantage in the series. The two schools last met in 1994, as the Cardinal and Wildcats played to a 41-41 tie in Evanston. Other meetings occured in 1933 (0-0), 1934 (20-0 Stanford), 1957 (26-6 Stanford), 1958 (28-0 Northwestern) and 1992 (35-24 Stanford).