Stanford women kick off soccer season in style

Mariah Nogueira christened the opening of Stanford's women's soccer season, scoring the first goal just before halftime as the second-ranked Cardinal topped visiting Penn State, 4-0, on Friday in a nonconference contest.

Castilleja grad Lindsay Taylor, Palo Alto grad Teresa Noyola and Marjani Hing-Glover also added goals for Stanford, which extended a couple of impressive streaks.

The Cardinal has won the last 36 homes matches, and is unbeaten in its past 40. Stanford also has a 43-match regular-season unbeaten streak, and has not allowed a first-half goal in 20 consecutive matches.

In addition, the Cardinal has won its last 23 home openers.

Stanford outshot the defending Big 10 champion Nittany Lions, 18-7, including a 7-4 advantage in shots on goal.

Junior Lindsay Dickerson started in goal for the Cardinal, recording a pair of saves in each half.

"It's like a new team for me," Stanford cpach Paul Ratcliffe said. "I know we have many familiar faces out there, but we've adjusted quite a bit. The team's playing well, and it was good to see them in mid-season form in the first game. They looked really sharp."

Stanford pressured Penn State goalie Erin McNulty in the final three minutes of the first half, with shots from freshman Alex Doll and Hing-Glover just missing ahead of Sydney Payne's corner kick, which set the first goal in motion.

"It was good to get the first goal just to calm everyone," Nogueira said. "Fortunately, it came just before the half and that gave us the momentum going into the second half."

Senior Camille Levin fired a crossing pass from the right, with Nogueira heading it into the net at the far post.

"I don't know if words can describe how much Cami means to the team," Ratcliffe said. "She had such a presence. She's getting forward, defending. She was doing everything."

Taylor scored 67 seconds into the second half, taking a nice through ball from junior Rachel Quon in stride and scoring off the goalkeeper.

Noyola scored eight minutes later. Freshman Chioma Ubogagu sent a deft forward pass for Noyola to score on an open net.

Hing-Glover scored off another Payne corner kick, with junior Alina Garciamendez heading the ball toward Hing-Glover for the tap in.

Stanford missed two starters because of injury: goalkeeper Emily Oliver and All-American defender Courtney Verloo.

Women's lacrosse

Northwestern grad Danielle Spencer was named an assistant coach to Amy Bokker's staff on Friday.

The two-time All-American, who also plays with the U.S. national team, recorded 203 draw controls, second in Wildcats' history.

"We are very excited to have Danielle join our staff," Bokker said. "She has the background of a proven champion. She is passionate about the game, has a tremendous work-ethic and is dedicated to help make Stanford lacrosse the best it can be. We think she is a great addition to our program and can't wait until she gets started."

Northwestern reached the NCAA championship game in all of her four years, winning three national titles. She graduated in 2010.

Spencer has since signed contracts with Easton Lacrosse and and has been hosting lacrosse camps in the Bay Area.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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