Jan. 28, 2012
BERKELEY, Calif. -
No. 1 Stanford women's water polo opened the defense of its national title Saturday at the California Speedo Invitational with wins of 17-2 and 19-7 over No. 11 Loyola Marymount and No. 15 UC Davis, respectively.
The Cardinal (2-0) opens its home slate next weekend, hosting the 2012 Stanford Invitational next Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 4-5, at Avery Aquatic Center. Stanford opens the tournament with a doubleheader Saturday, taking on UC Davis at 8:30 a.m. then facing USC at 4 p.m.
Freshmen Kiley Neushul and Ashley Grossman paced the Cardinal scoring Saturday, netting seven and six goals, respectively. Sophomore Kaitlyn Lo netted five while senior Pallavi Menon scored four times and Alyssa Lo found the back of the cage on three occasions.
Both Cardinal goalies, junior Kate Baldoni and freshman Emily Dorst, saw action in the cage. Baldoni started and went the distance in the opener, then played the second half of the nightcap, making a total of 13 saves. Dorst got the starting nod in the nightcap against UC Davis and made four saves in a half of action.
Stanford, eager to begin its title defense, jumped out to an 8-1 halftime lead against Loyola Marymount in Saturday's opener. After taking a 2-0 lead after the opening period, the Cardinal exploded for six goals in the second frame to take control of the contest.
Three more goals against just one for the Lions made it 11-2, and the Cardinal made sure it would hold up with another six-spot in the fourth period.
Grossman and Neushul opened their collegiate careers with hat tricks, scoring four and three goals, respectively, in the victory.
Baldoni was strong in the cage, making seven saves against the Lions.
Hours later, the Cardinal picked up right where it left off, this time against UC Davis. Four first-period goals led to an early 4-1 advantage in the opening eight minutes. The Aggies would get three goals of their own in the second frame, but the Cardinal offense continued to pressure, answering with four more goals to take an 8-4 halftime lead.
Stanford would put the game to bed in the third period, scoring seven goals while its defense dug in and did not yield a core to UC Davis. Leading 15-4, Stanford scored four more times in the final period to ice things and finish the weekend with a pair of wins.
LMU - 0 1 1 0 = 2
Stanford - 2 6 3 6 = 17
Stanford Goal Scorers: Grossman 4, Neushul 3, Churnside 2, K. Lo 2, Menon 2, Carpenter, Coughlan, Garton, Lee
LMU Goal Scorers: Benedetti, Manke
Goalie Saves: Baldoni 7 (S); Ponce 7 (LMU)
UC Davis - 1 3 0 3 = 7
Stanford - 4 4 7 4 = 19
Stanford Goal Scorers: Neushul 3, A. Lo 3, K. Lo 3, Grossman 2, Kennedy 2, Menon 2, Garton, Lee, Ross, Suggs
UC Davis Goal Scorers: Curran 3, C. Faber 2, Feeney, Mohr
Goalie Saves: Dorst 4, Baldoni 6 (S); Tatusko 5, Wilding 1 (UCD)