Romanowicz recovers from deficit to lead Stanford past the Bears


Maciek Romanowicz took his time even as he faced a seemingly insurmountable deficit. He was Stanford's last hope and California's J.T. Nishimura was matching him point for point.

Romanowicz came all the way back from a 5-2 deficit in the third set to beat Nishimura, 5-7, 7-5, 7-5, and give the Cardinal a stunning 4-3 upset over the 14th-ranked Bears in a nonconference men's tennis match on Saturday.

As Romanowicz delivered his game-winner, he began shouting and jumping and was soon joined by his teammates on court four to celebrate the improbable victory.

Stanford (5-2) won its fourth straight, and its first on the road. The Cardinal won its second straight in Berkeley.

The Cardinal returns home for a nonconference match against Hawaii at 2 p.m. on Tuesday.

The Bears won the doubles point but Stanford responded with wins from Nolan Paige at No. 6, John Morrissey at No. 3 and freshman Tom Fawcett at the top of the ladder to take a 3-1 advantage.

Cal came back to win at No. 2 and No. 5 singles to tie the score, setting the stage for Romanowicz's heroics.

"We played an exciting college tennis match today," Cal coach Peter Wright said. "Both teams had opportunities at the end, and we had match points to win it all."

Stanford improved to 90-19 all-time against the Bears and Fawcett, ranked 28th in the nation, improved to 18-4 overall.

Fawcett won his sixth straight, though fellow freshman David Wilczynski (14-6 overall) had a five-match winning streak halted. Romanowicz improved to 5-8 overall, while Paige improved to 16-8.

Women's water polo

Top-ranked Stanford won its first two games of the UC Irvine Invitational on Saturday, beating Pacific, 13-3, and Cal State Northridge, 16-3.

The Cardinal (10-0) plays No. 4 California Sunday morning. USC and UCLA play in the other championship semifinal match. Winners will meet for the title, while the losers play for third.

Kiley Neushul, Jordan Raney, Maggie Steffens, Ashley Grossman and Dani Jackovich each scored twice in the win over the Tigers.

Grossman and Neushul each added three goals against the Matadors while Steffens and Katie Dudley scored twice.

Women's tennis

No. 10 Stanford remained unbeaten with a 4-0 victory over Duke in a nonconference match played at Florida on Saturday.

The Cardinal (7-0) and host Gators will play Sunday morning.

Sophomore Caroline Doyle clinched the match with her straight set victory at No. 3 singles.

Stanford won the doubles point and junior Krista Hardebeck made it 2-0 with a win at No. 5 singles.

Carol Zhao, who improved to 7-0 playing at the top of the ladder, won in straight sets to set up Hardebeck's match clincher.

Zhao is 16-2 overall, while Caroline Doyle is 17-3 and Hardebeck improved to 8-6.

Ellen Tsay was ahead in her match at No. 5 singles when the match ended. Duke was in front in two other matches.


Marc Brakeman gave Stanford baseball its second straight quality start, but it was not enough as host Cal State Fullerton took a 4-2 decision Saturday night.

Stanford (2-4) rallied for two runs in the eighth, but the tying run was left at third.

Pinch-hitter Beau Branton's two-strike, two-RBI triple drove in Quinn Brodey and Alex Dunlap to put the Cardinal in good position with no outs.

Brakeman (0-1) allowed one earned run on four hits in six innings of work.

The Titans broke out in the fifth with three runs with the help of faulty Cardinal defense.


Stanford won Saturday's first game at the Mary Nutter Classic, 4-0, over Oklahoma State behind the combined six-hitter of Madi Schreyer and Haley Snyder.

Stanford lost, 13-8, to Fresno State in the second game.

The Cardinal (9-6) got two hits and two RBI each from Kayla Bonstrom and Jessica Plaza to help beat the Cowboys.

Bonstrom hit a two-run homer in the fifth. Leah White led off the inning with a triple.

Plaza doubled home a run in the first and then singled home Tylyn Wells in the third.

Schreyer (3-1) went the first six innings, allowing five hits, walking one and striking out seven.

Bonstrom collected four hits and drove in three runs in the loss to the Bulldogs. Cassandra Roulund had three hits, including a pair of doubles.

Stanford finishes the Classic with a pair of games on Sunday against Texas A&M and San Diego State.

Men's swimming

Stanford lost to host California, 184 1/2-115 1/2, Saturday in the regular season finale for both teams.

The next stop for both schools is the Pac-12 Conference championships in Federal Way, Wash. The diving competition takes place beginning Thursday and swimming competition opens March 4.

Jack DesCombes won the 50-yard freestyle in 20.15 and Thomas Stephens (44.22) added a victory in the 100-yard freestyle. DesCombes displayed his versatility with a 47.99 for second in the 100-yard butterfly.

The Cardinal dominated the boards, with Kristian Ipsen winning the 3-meter edition with 456.08 points. Bradley Christensen (340.43) was second and Tarek Abdelghany (338.25) took third. Ipsen completed the daily-double with 421.88 points to win the 1-meter event.

Stanford (1:26.98) was over a second behind Cal (1:25.86) in the meet-opening 200-yard medley relay, and the Bears went 1-2-3 in the 1,000-yard freestyle.

David Nolan finished second in the 200-yard freestyle, swimming a 1:36.38. He also placed second in the 200-yard individual medley.

Men's volleyball

Stanford defeated visiting Hope International University, 25-20, 25-20, 22-25, 25-16, Saturday, in a nonconference match.

All 15 Cardinal players who suited up took the court on Saturday. As a team, Stanford hit a season high .356 while holding Hope to a .208 clip.

"It was a good team effort tonight," Cardinal coach John Kosty said. "I liked how we responded after game three. I thought we picked up the intensity and refocused again. I like how we started to figure things out."

Junior middle blocker Conrad Kaminski went 8-0-12 to hit .667, while also recording three blocks and an ace in three sets. Redshirt freshman Kevin Rakestraw also played in three sets, totaling seven kills on nine swings with no errors to hit .778. He also collected five blocks, including two solo.

Redshirt sophomore outside hitter Gabriel Vega and junior opposite Alex Stephanus led the team with nine kills and three digs apiece.

Freshman Kyle Dagostino and senior Sean Kemper shared time at setter in each of the four sets. Dagostino finished with 35 assists and a match-high nine digs. Kemper tallied a career high 11 assists and two blocks.

Stanford (5-10) plays host to No. 6 Pepperdine on Friday at 5 p.m., to be televised on the Pac-12 Networks.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Stanford Athletics

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