DiBiasi's goal lifts Stanford to golden victory over Florida


Jordan DiBiasi is making a habit of scoring clutch goals in big moments.

The sophomore midfielder scored on her own rebound in overtime in the 96th minute to propel No. 3 Stanford past No. 6 Florida, 1-0, Friday night at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium.

Jordan DiBiasi
It is the seventh goal of DiBiasi's career and fifth game-winner. Four of her five game-winning goals have come against opponents ranked 16th or higher.

DiBiasi's late tally provided the exclamation point to an impressive home-opener for the Cardinal (3-0) against the Gators (2-1) in which it controlled a majority of the possession and dictated the run of play. Stanford outshot Florida 19-7 and held an 8-1 corner kick advantage.

Stanford's defense stood tall against a talented Florida attack to register its second consecutive shutout. Maddie Bauer and Alana Cook continued their solid play anchoring the defensive unit, while Tegan McGrady and Ceci Gee played well at outside back.

Jane Campbell made four saves in net to register her first shutout of the season and 31st of her career, tying Leslie Garrard (1990-94) for third-most in program history. She is four shutouts shy of tying Nicole Barnhart (2000-04) for the all-time program record.

Men's soccer

Stanford put six shots on frame and Andrew Epstein was only forced to make one save in the 94th minute, but a packed in Penn State side held firm on Friday night and played the No. 1 Cardinal to a scoreless draw in the season opener for both teams.

"We were really solid defensively," head coach Jeremy Gunn said. "I don't recall Andy [Epstein having to make saves at all. We had massive percentages of the possession, the best chances and were on the top side the whole game through. We were just missing that goal."

After some feeling out through the opening minutes, Stanford (0-0-1) began to pepper Penn State (0-0-1) keeper Evan Finney – and the post – with headers in close and strikes from distance. Drew Skundrich rocketed one over the bar in the 19th, Foster Langsdorf tried to flick one in from his back inside the six in the 44th and had a diving header snagged by Finney in the 85th, but all three left the Cardinal wanting.

Stanford's most awe-inducing chance came in the 78th minute when Bryce Marion pounced on a loose ball and cracked one off the post from the top of the 18.

"We were always looking and searching," Gunn said. "Any different chance could have gone in and we're going away happy and instead we're going away frustrated. We had some great shots [and Bryce nearly knocked the goalpost out of the ground with a great strike. It wasn't quite there today, but I do think we can be pleased with so much of what we did."

Women's volleyball

For just the second time under 16th-year head coach John Dunning, the Stanford women's volleyball team dropped its season opener. Up two sets to none, the 11th-ranked Cardinal fell 22-25, 19-25, 25-18, 25-21, 15-11 to San Diego, Friday, at Maples Pavilion.

San Diego, which was picked to win the West Coast Conference, edged Stanford in hitting percentage .228 to .220.

The Toreros amped up their defense in the final three sets, totaling 66 digs and 14 blocks. The Cardinal finished with 20 team blocks and 53 digs. It marks the first win over Stanford for USD in six tries.

Friday marked the return of Stanford middle blocker Inky Ajanaku, a three-time All-American and 2014 Volleyball Magazine National Player of the Year, who missed the 2015 season after tearing her ACL playing with the U.S. National Team. The Tulsa, Oklahoma native tallied 11 kills on .429 hitting and eight blocks in her return.

Stanford was led in kills by sophomore outside hitter Hayley Hodson, who notched a double-double with 13 kills and 11 digs. Redshirt junior Merete Lutz also recorded a double-double with 10 kills and a career-high-tying 10 blocks.

There were other bright spots for the Cardinal, including the collegiate debuts of four of its freshmen.

Middle blocker Audriana Fitzmorris made her presence felt at the net early, racking up 11 blocks to go with six kills.

Opposite Kathryn Plummer registered 12 kills and four blocks, while setter Jenna Gray had 25 assists, three digs and an ace playing a 6-2 with senior Kelsey Humphreys (25 assists, 6 digs).

Libero Morgan Hentz finished with 15 digs and five assists in her debut.

Redshirt junior Ivana Vanjak, who has moved back to outside hitter after playing in the middle last year, totaled nine kills and three digs. Defensive specialist Halland McKenna added eight digs and two aces.

Stanford closes out the opening weekend against No. 3 Minnesota on Sunday. First serve is slated for 1 p.m. on Pac-12 Network.

Field hockey

Montana Fleming's goal with time winding down in the game lifted No. 3 UConn past No. 11 Stanford 2-1 on Friday afternoon in the Cardinal's 2016 season opener.

With less than two minutes remaining, the Huskies (1-0) were able to capitalize on their eighth penalty corner of the game. Prior to the goal, the Cardinal was flawless on the seven penalty corners the Huskies had attempted. Kelsey Bing, in her collegiate debut, showed poise in goal, making five saves on the day.

"I thought our team defended well and stuck to the game plan today," stated seventh-year head coach Tara Danielson. "It's a long season and I am looking forward to building on this performance."

The Cardinal (0-1) found itself in an early deficit as the Huskies were able to put one in by the eighth minute of action as Charlotte Veitner made a move in the circle before lobbing a shot over Kelsey Bing's shoulder to make it 1-0 UConn.

Stanford found it hard to get its offense to sync in the first half, with UConn outshooting the Cardinal 5-0 and holding a 2-0 advantage in penalty corners. In the second half, the story remained the same until the 58th minute when Sarah Helgeson sent a penalty corner in that Jessica Welch buried into the UConn goal to make it 1-1.

The Stanford defense held its own with the Huskies peppering nine shots with five on goal as Bing did work. The Cardinal struggled with penalty corners though, giving UConn six of them in the half with Casey Umstead finally setting up Montana Fleming with 1:40 remaining for the game-winner.

"It was a great game to start the 2016 season. The facility, weather and teams were top notch," added Danielson. "I couldn't ask for a better way to start the year."

— Stanford Athletics

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