Cardinal women splash to win opening round of MPSF tournament


The third-ranked Stanford women's water polo team scored six of the game's first seven goals and never looked back, beating San Jose State, 10-6, in the quarterfinals of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Tournament on Friday in Bakersfield.

The Cardinal meets second-ranked UCLA in Saturday's semifinal round.

Freshman Madison Berggren, sophomore Katie Dudley and senior Gurpreet Sohi each scored twice for Stanford (20-4), which beat the Spartans (17-14) for the fourth time this season.

Julia Hermann made eight saves in the cage and added a team-high three steals to help Stanford advance.

Stanford's early onslaught underscored the balanced attack it has employed this season. Six different players scored in the first half to stake the Cardinal to a 6-1 lead at intermission.

Berggren's 21st goal of the season at opened the scoring less than two minutes into the contest. She then fed Jordan Raney for a 6-on-5 score with 4:49 on the clock.

Rachel Johnson set up Katie Dudley for another power-play goal at 1:42 and Johnson was the recipient of a nice feed from Jamie Neushul for Stanford's third man-up tally of the first frame.

Neushul got on the board early in the second thanks to a pass from Raney and Anna Yelizarova rattled the cage unassisted with 2:57 remaining until halftime to put the Cardinal up by that five-goal margin.

The Spartans scored the first two coming out of the break, but Sohi got one back for Stanford in yet another successful 6-on-5 situation with under a minute left in the third quarter.

Each side scored three in the fourth, with Cardinal tallies coming from Berggren (6:23), Sohi (5:59) and Dudley (1:24).

Stanford, which was 4-of-7 on its power play opportunities, faces the Bruins for the second time in a week. The Cardinal used a 5-1 run over the second and third quarters to storm back from an early three-goal deficit, but the Bruins' Devin Grab scored her fourth on a penalty early in sudden death overtime to help UCLA escape with a 9-8 victory over the Stanford last Saturday in Westwood.

— Stanford Athletics


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