Oct. 31, 2011
| "This is the start of something new and very big."
Xanthe Travlos, following Stanford's 3-1 win over Cal on Nov. 3, 2007, in the NorPac Championship title game, the Cardinal's first conference tourney crown since 2000.
STANFORD, Calif.- As it turned out, Xanthe Travlos- a freshman at the time- was spot on in her postgame assessment noted above.
Stanford would not only spend the next four years continuing its dominance of the rival Golden Bears, but also as the flagship program of the NorPac, which combines East Coast teams Appalachian State, Davidson, Longwood and Radford with West Coast programs Stanford, California, Pacific and UC Davis.
Stanford will seek its fifth consecutive tourney crown when this weekend's NorPac Championship, slated for Nov. 3-5 at the Varsity Turf, gets underway. The eight schools will compete in a cross-divisional format, with the tournament champion receiving a spot in an NCAA Play-In game.
The last five NorPac Championship title games have resulted in a Stanford-California matchup, with the Cardinal defeating the Golden Bears four straight years. California posted a 3-1 win in the 2006 championship game.
As we get closer to this weekend's event, we take a look back at Stanford's stranglehold on the conference tournament championship.
Nov. 3, 2007 - Stanford 3, California 1 at Stanford, CA
In a season highlighted by program firsts and record-setting performances, Stanford's latest milestone clearly tops the rest. Stanford recorded its first conference tournament championship since 2000, defeating rival California 3-1. The victory was even sweeter considering the Golden Bears entered the contest having won 18 straight in the series dating back to 2001. Ashley Glosz put California up 1-0 in the 16th minute, immediately firing up the Cal bench after both squads traded early scoring opportunities. Stanford quickly knotted the match at 1-1 two minutes later thanks to Katherine Donner's second goal of the year. The Cardinal momentum continued when Xanthe Travlos scored an unassisted goal in the 22nd minute, firing a quick strike into the upper corner of the cage that blazed past California keeper Kelly Knoche. The first-half statistics told a different story though, as California held a 6-3 edge in shot attempts and appeared ready to break through at any moment in a closely-played match. But the Cardinal continued to play solid defense in the second half, turning away Golden Bear scoring opportunities and generating scoring chances on the other end thanks to a revived offense. Stanford tacked on an insurance goal in the 66th minute when Jess Zutz scored her team-leading 13th of the year. Zutz poked in a rebound on a loose ball from Camille Gandhi, capping the victory and setting off an early Cardinal celebration at the Varsity Turf.
Nov. 8, 2008 - Stanford 2, California 1 (2OT) at Farmville, VA
Camille Gandhi tapped in the game-winning goal in the 94th minute of double-overtime, lifting Stanford to an improbable 2-1 victory over then-No. 16 California. Trailing 1-0 with four minutes left in regulation, Xanthe Travlos forced overtime when she converted on Stanford's first successful penalty stroke attempt in three years. California appeared poised to claim the title, owning commanding advantages in shot attempts (29-9) and penalty corners (9-5). Stanford's answer: goalkeeper Alessandra Moss, who matched her career-best mark of 13 saves. After a scoreless first period, California's offensive pressure paid off with a Kellie York goal at the 42:19 mark following a penalty corner. But with just under five minutes to play, Stanford earned a penalty corner attempt with 65:54 on the clock when a shot attempt hit a Golden Bear defender's foot. Travlos then connected for her fifth goal of the year, extending the game and Stanford's season. Three minutes into the second overtime, the Golden Bears were awarded a penalty stroke, but the shot sailed wide and tagged the crossbar, giving Stanford new life. Then in the 94th minute, Gandhi broke free from the defense and hit a slow shot that was deflected by a California defender's stick and slowly rolled into the empty cage. The Cardinal was outshot 9-1 over both overtimes combined while the Golden Bears attempted four penalty corners.
Nov. 7, 2009 - Stanford 3, California 0 at Stanford, CA
Backed by three early goals and a stout defense, Stanford blanked California 3-0. In sharp contrast to the previous two NorPac championship games, Stanford dominated play from the start. The Cardinal held a 14-3 shot edge over the first 35 minutes while owning a 4-1 advantage in penalty corners. Stanford outshot California 21-11, attempting seven penalty corners compared to just three from the Golden Bears. The tone was set in the sixth minute of the game, when Becky Dru gave Stanford a 1-0 lead off a textbook penalty corner attempt. Jaimee Erickson injected the ball to Nora Soza, who provided a well-placed stick-stop, and Dru capped the perfectly-executed play with her 13th goal of the season. Two minutes later, Xanthe Travlos banged home her team-leading 16th goal, when she corralled the rebound of her initial attempt and fired a low shot past Cal keeper Maddie Hand. In the 19th minute following a penalty corner attempt, Rachel Mozenter dribbled through the inside of the circle and dished a quick pass to Stephanie Byrne, who found the cage for a 3-0 lead. Alessandra Moss was once again effective between the posts, making nine saves and doing her part after rarely being tested during the first two games of the tournament that resulted in Cardinal blowouts.
Nov. 6, 2010 - Stanford 2, California 0 at Davidson, N.C.
Becky Dru scored two early goals to cap a dominating tournament performance and lead Stanford to its fourth straight NorPac Tournament championship. Dru scored twice in a seven-minute span during the game's first 20 minutes and Stanford's defense took care of the rest. Dru's numbers over the three-game stretch (five goals, three assists, 13 points, 20 shots) were more than enough to secure her tournament MVP honors. A penalty stroke was awarded to Stanford at the 10:09 mark with Dru converting for a 1-0 lead. The stroke was called when California goalkeeper Maddie Hand left her position to take out an on-rushing Stanford player in the circle. In the 17th minute, Dru found the cage again thanks to a pass that Xanthe Travlos slipped through to the right side. Dru led all players with five shots while Katherine Swank added three attempts off the bench. Elise Ogle and Katie Mitchell added two shots apiece. Stanford held a 16-3 edge in shot attempts, including an 11-2 mark in the second half. The Cardinal also owned an advantage in penalty corners at 6-2. Alessandra Moss made two saves in goal, notching her second shutout in as many days. So the hardware remains in Stanford's trophy case, as the Cardinal has now won seven of the last 10 meetings overall against the Golden Bears.
by Brian Risso, Stanford Athletics Communications/Media Relations