May 5, 2004
MPSF Championship, May 6-8th - University of Denver
Stanford (8-8) vs. UC Davis (11-4) - 4:00 PM (MT)
Thursday, May 6th - University of Denver - Pioneer Field
THIS WEEK: The Cardinal head to Denver, CO to participate in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championship. Stanford wrapped up the No. 1 seed in the tournament by posting a 4-0 record in MPSF play. The Cardinal will take on the UC Davis Aggies, who are the No. 4 seed in the first semifinal on Thursday, at 4:00 pm (MT). The California Golden Bears are the No. 2 seed and they will take on No. 3 seeded Denver in the second semifinal of the day. The winner of each semifinal will advance to play in the MPSF Championship final on Saturday, May 8th at 1:00 pm.
A QUICK LOOK AT THE CARDINAL: Stanford enters the weekend with an 8-8 overall record and a 4-0 mark in MPSF play ... The Cardinal will be seeking their second consecutive MPSF championship. Last season, Stanford defeated Cal, 15-14, in the MPSF Tournament title game ... Four Cardinal (Katie Grube, Nina Pantano, Christina Saikus and Kelsey Twist) were named to the All-MPSF team, while Head Coach Michele Uhlfelder was selected as Co-Coach of the Year ... Senior midfielder Abbi Hills, a Lakewood, CO native, returns to her home state as the Cardinal's leading scorer with 31 goals on the season ... Twist leads the Cardinal in assists with 11. Twist is the all-time leader in assists at Stanford with 51.
SENSATIONAL SAIKUS: Senior goalkeeper Christina Saikus has registered 147 saves on the season and ranks 12th in the country in save percentage (.553) and 20th in goals against average (8.91). Her 147 saves on the season ties her own record for the fifth most saves in a single season in Stanford history.
SCOUTING THE MPSF CHAMPIONSHIP FIELD: Stanford's opponent in the semifinals will be the UC Davis Aggies. The Aggies bring an 11-4 record into Thursday's match. UC Davis is one of the best Division II schools in the country, ranking No. 2 in the latest Inside Lacrosse Division II power poll. UC Davis is led by freshman standout Katie McMahon who led the Aggies with 63 goals and 15 assists. McMahon and senior Kelly Albin were selected to the All-MPSF team ... The California Golden Bears enter the MPSF Championship with an 8-8 overall record and a 3-1 mark in conference play. The Bears only league loss was a 9-6 setback versus the Cardinal. The Bears are led by Colleen O'Mara and Molly Brady. O'Mara leads the nation with a 2.44 assists per game average and has claimed Cal's single-season (39) and career records (81) for assists. Brady is the Bears' scoring leader with 37 goals ... The Denver Pioneers are the No. 3 seed in this weekend's MPSF Championship and own a 7-10 overall record and a 2-2 mark in conference play. Three Denver players were selected to the All-MPSF team in Stephanie Greenlees (39 g, 9 a), Patience Baldwin (37 g, 11 a) and Crystal Jack (22 g, 6 a).
FOUR CARDINAL NAMED ALL-MPSF: Four Stanford University women's lacrosse players were named to the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation all-conference team, as announced by the league office. Senior defender Katie Grube and senior goalie Christina Saikus were joined on the All-MPSF team by junior midfielders Nina Pantano and Kelsey Twist. Grube has been a four-year standout on The Farm. The Hinsdale, IL, native has played and started in 67 games during her tenure at Stanford. Grube will finish her career as Stanford's all-time leader in caused turnovers with 101. Saikus is one of the top goalkeepers in the country, registering 147 saves on the season. The Highland Heights, OH native ranks 12th in the country in saves percentage (.553) and 20th in goals against average (8.91). Saikus' 294 career saves rank third on the Cardinal all-time list. In her three seasons on The Farm, Pantano has been a steady force for the Cardinal. With 74 career goals, Pantano already ranks sixth on the Cardinal's all-time goals scored list. This season, the Wayne, PA native has scored 14 goals and ranks third on the team in draw controls with 18. Twist has established herself as one of the most dominant players in Stanford history and she is just a junior. The Baltimore, MD native has played and started in every game in her three seasons on The Farm. Twist is tied for fourth on the Cardinal's all-time goals scored list with 95 and is already Stanford's career assists leader (51) and draw controls leader (112).
TWO STANFORD PLAYERS NAMED MPSF PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Two Stanford players have garnered Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Player of the Week honors in senior Abbi Hills and junior Kelsey Twist. Hills was named the MPSF Player of the Week for her performance during the week of March 22-28th, while Twist earned the weekly honor the following week (29th-April 4th). Hills led Stanford to a 3-0 record and helped the Cardinal clinch the No. 1 seed in the upcoming MPSF women's lacrosse Championship. For the week, Hills scored an amazing 10 goals, including five in Stanford's big 16-5 win over Denver, which clinched the top seed in the MPSF Championship. Twisted turned in an all-around solid performance in the Cardinal's 15-12 overtime win over Cal, scoring four goals and adding an assist, while also registering six draw controls, three caused turnovers and two ground balls.
STANFORD'S UHLFELDER HONORED: Cardinal Head Coach Michele Uhlfelder was named MPSF Co-Coach of the Year after guiding the Stanford to a perfect 4-0 conference record and the top seed in the MPSF Championship. Earlier this season, Uhlfelder was inducted into the Greater Baltimore Chapter of U.S. Lacrosse Hall of Fame. Uhlfelder, one of 11 inductees, was honored with a Hall of Fame Banquet and induction ceremony on Saturday, January 31st at The Grand Lodge and Masonic Temple in Hunt Valley, Maryland. Each year, the Greater Baltimore Lacrosse Chapter inducts men and women who have made significant contributions to the game of lacrosse in the Baltimore area. Uhlfelder has strong ties to the area with the majority of her family still living there. She grew up in Baltimore and played lacrosse at Pikesville High School in Baltimore and at the University of Maryland, where she was selected a First Team All-American in 1991.
THE UHLFELDER FILE: Michele Uhlfelder, entering her fourth season as the head coach at Stanford, has been a pioneer for the sport of lacrosse. In 2001, under Uhlfelder's guidance, Stanford became the first west coast university to ever garner a top 20 national ranking. Uhlfelder has built the Cardinal program into a top 20 team and has Stanford on the brink of earning its first-ever NCAA Tournament bid. The Baltimore, MD native was also recently honored by being inducted into the Greater Baltimore Chapter of U.S. Lacrosse Hall of Fame. Uhlfelder isn't just attracting the best and the brightest student-athletes to The Farm, but has also assembled one of the best coaching staffs in the country. Last season, Uhlfelder's staff made history when they became the first lacrosse program ever to boast three World Cup players as coaches. As a player, Uhlfelder has participated in the game at the highest collegiate and international levels. She is a two-time member of the USA Women's National Team (1997, 2001) and was a key player on the 2001 U.S. squad that won a gold medal at the World Cup. She started all seven games and was the third highest scorer on the American team, ranking sixth among all scorers at the World Cup. Uhlfelder is still very much involved with the U.S. Lacrosse as she was chosen as a selector for the U-19 National team in 2003. She has also served as a coach at US Development camps from 2001-03.