Stanford vs. Cal, 4/2/04
The air in the locker room was thick with anticipation for the upcoming game versus the California Bears. After a unique pep-talk by coach Uhlfelder, the Cardinal took the field. The Bears were quick off the line, winning the first couple draws and challenging our defense with tough crease rolls and dumps to Cal attackers coming off a stack at the top of the 8. Card attackers were on a mission though, and managed to get 5 goals past Cal's keeper before halftime.
The second half was full of excitement as we scored 5 unanswered goals, surpassing the Bears' lead and triggering one bold fan to disrobe and run onto the field, adding surprise, shock, and for some, enjoyment to the game. Kelsey Twist kicked up the intensity on draws and along with the attackers: Bunks, Claire, Bachie, Nina, Abbi, Cass, Pisells and myself, successfully ran through a variety of offenses to help us gather momentum. At Saikus' end of the field, high-pressure defense led to multiple interceptions, knock-downs, and checks on impact. The defenders: Grube, Tia, Verrilli, Nyerr, and Bryanne challenged the Cal offense again and again to try to beat them by finding and passing to the open player. Despite the Cardinal's awe-inspiring play, the Bears reacted in a fashion true to their resilient mascot, scoring 3 goals to tie the game just before the buzzer signaling the end of regulation.
The Cardinal came out hungry for bear meat in overtime winning all six draws with hustle and determination on ground balls. Ball possession and getting off a couple quick goals in the first minutes of overtime led one dedicated fan to describe the action as, "the best 3 minutes I've ever seen them play." Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it was indeed an awesome match-one that will stay in my memory for a long time.