March 25, 2006
Stanford, Calif. - The No. 18 Stanford women's lacrosse team suffered a 19-8 loss to No. 1 Northwestern this afternoon in its second to last home match at Maloney field. The Cardinal battled with six goals in the first half but was unable to oust the defending national champion and top-ranked team. With the loss, Stanford drops to 5-3 on the season, while the Wildcats improve to 8-0 and extend their unbeaten streak to 29 games. Northwestern now leads the series between the two programs, 3-1.
The Wildcats came out strong, overwhelming the Cardinal with seven goals in the opening 11 minutes. Freshman Maris Perlman ended the Stanford drought in the 16th minute, however, finishing on a pass from Michelle DeChant. Perlman's goal gave Stanford the momentum, as the Cardinal notched three goals in less than two minutes. During the run, DeChant capitalized on a Wildcat turnover, netting a pass from Anna Brown. Senior Sarah Bach won the next draw control and fellow senior Megan Burker finished the possession with an unassisted goal. Northwestern responded with a 4-1 run, however, to take a commanding 11-4 lead. Wildcat senior Sarah Albrecht had a hand in three of the four Wildcat scores during the eight minute span.
Stanford challenged once again to close the first half, as DeChant scored her second goal of the afternoon with just over two minutes left to play. Just over a minute later, junior Liz Piselli got on the board to bring Stanford within five. The 11-6 halftime deficit marked the first time this season that the Cardinal has trailed at the break.
In the second half, Northwestern took control from the beginning with five straight goals, including two from Albrecht. Burker and Piselli scored for the Cardinal in the second half, but the squad was unable to curb the energy of the top-ranked Wildcats. The Cardinal was led by the two goals of DeChant as well as pairs from Burker and Piselli. Sophomore Daphne Patterson and Perlman rounded out the Stanford scoring. Northwestern was led by the seven goals and two assists of Albrecht and a four goal and four assist performance from senior Lindsey Munday. Northwestern out shot the Cardinal 38-18 and won 22 of 29 draw controls.
Of note, Patterson and Piselli did what just one other player has done against the Wildcats this season-- score on a free position shot against Wildcat keeper Morgan Lathrop. The Cardinal was successful on two free position shots against a team that had previously held opponents 1 for 20 on those attempts. Additionally, Burker posted her name on the Cardinal career caused turnovers list with a game-leading two in the match. The senior now appears in the top-ten on every Cardinal career chart.
Stanford continues play on the road next weekend, with matches at No. 13 Dartmouth and against No. 5 North Carolina. Friday's match is scheduled for 3 p.m. (EST) in Hanover, NH and Sunday's match will be played at 1 p.m. (EST) and hosted by Georgetown University. The Cardinal will play its final match at Maloney Field on April 10 at 7 p.m.