Stanford, California fit to be tied in Pac-12 soccer


Zach Batteer scored late in regulation to bring the Stanford men's soccer team even with visiting California in a Pac-12 Conference match that ended in a 1-1 draw Monday night.

Batteer scored in his third consecutive match, Andrew Epstein made a career-high six saves and the 13th-ranked Cardinal finally delivered after being turned away 12 times by Cal goalie Justin Taillole.

Stanford (8-2-2 overall, 2-1-2 Pac-12) travels to USF for a nonconference match Friday night.

The result meant that the Cardinal remained undefeated at home, 6-0-2 this season and 7-0-4 in its last 11 home matches. Stanford is also 5-0-6 over its past 11 overtime matches at home.

"Tonight was truly an exciting game and the players from both sides can be really proud of the way they performed," Stanford coach Jeremy Gunn said. "I thought our guys were magnificent. It's a tie game against another great team – Pac-12 soccer at the moment – and we move forward again."

The 18th-ranked Golden Bears (8-3-1, 2-2-1) scored on their first attempt in the seventh minute, and remained on the offensive for much of the remainder of the first half.

It was a different story in the second half, as Stanford's effort knocked the Golden Bears on their heels.

"I was upset we let in the first goal because that obviously gives them the impetus and we're having to fight back into a game that we shouldn't have to," Gunn said. "That gives them confidence when they know they're coming in to a tough environment. Throughout the game we dodged a couple of bullets and they dodged even more. There were great chances at both ends … maybe enough to last five games of soccer a lot of times."

In the 68th minute, Foster Langsdorf forced another monster save from Cal with a blast from close range.

Soon after, a Bobby Edwards corner led to a scramble in front of Taillole. As the loose ball bounced around, Batteer was able to corral it and send it into the back of the net for the equalizer.

"In the second half I thought we were the better team," Gunn said. "We were really getting after them and it looked like once we scored the goal that we were going to be good for another because we kept creating great chances. We had them on their heels."

In the 78th minute, Slater Meehan's torpedo of a shot was tipped just over the bar by Taillole. Edwards' shot in overtime hammered the top of the goal.

Stanford, which fired off four shots in the first overtime and held Cal without an opportunity, almost sent the crowd of 1,022 home happy in the 99th minute. Another Cardinal corner led to Batteer being given some room near the top of the six-yard box, but his diving header went over the bar.

"It's not as if they were all speculative," Gunn added of his team's shots. "We had a lot of good chances and we had a lot of scrambles. There were a few of those moments where you were trying to figure out how it didn't go in, but we just couldn't quite smash the ball home."

Cal nearly stole the victory in the 105th minute, but Seth Casiple's shot went into the side netting. In the 107th, Morris had the game's last great chance, but his shot from inside the 18 went high.

Stanford outshot Cal 35-16 and has now outdone its opponents in that category 84-30 in its last three matches.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Stanford Athletics

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