Stanford Invitational Central
STANFORD, Calif. - The top-ranked Stanford women's water polo team moved into prime position to capture its first Stanford Invitational title since 2003, as it claimed victories of 12-5 and 10-7 over No. 6 Michigan and No. 2 USC, respectively, on Saturday.
Stanford (5-0) will complete group play Sunday morning at 8 a.m. as it takes on No. 7 San Jose State. A victory over the Spartans will clinch a berth in the tournament's title game, to be played at 4:30 p.m. at Avery Aquatic Center.
Sophomore two-meter Melissa Seidemann scored eight goals on the day to lead the Cardinal. Senior Kelly Eaton scored five times, including four times against USC, while freshman Annika Dries netted a hat trick in the morning game against Michigan.
Amber Oland started both contests, going the distance in the afternoon against USC, and made 12 saves, including a stop of a five-meter penalty. Freshman Kate Baldoni came on in relief against Michigan and made a save.
Opening up the event with the first game at 8:30 a.m. Saturday morning, Stanford showed no signs of drowsiness as Dries kick-started a five-goal outburst in the opening period. The Cardinal would tally on three more goals to take an 8-3 halftime lead, and one more in the third made it 9-3 before the team cruised to the 12-5 victory.
Seidemann posted four goals along with Dries' hat trick. Pallavi Menon scored a pair and single goals were tallied by Kelly Eaton, Kelsey Holshouser and Alex Koran.
After a lengthy break, Stanford returned to the pool for a highly-anticipated 4 p.m. contest against No. 2 USC. Once again, a fast start, led by Seidemann, carried the Cardinal to an early cushion, as Stanford held a 4-2 advantage after the opening eight minutes.
The teams matched one another with two goals in the second frame, going into halftime with the Cardinal still up by a pair at 6-4.
In the second half, the Cardinal refused to bend, never allowing the Women of Troy to get within less than two goals the rest of the way, continually answering USC's goals with goals of its own. Stanford would outscore USC 3-2 in the final period to put the final touches on its 10-7 win, and put itself in position to earn a place in the title game Sunday.
Eaton and Seidemann each scored four times in the win, while Holshouser and Kim Krueger accounted for the remaining two Stanford goals.
Michigan - 2 1 0 2 = 5
Stanford - 5 3 1 3 = 12
Stanford Goal Scorers: Seidemann 4, Dries 3, Menon 2, Eaton, Holshouser, Koran
Michigan Goal Scorers: Golden 2, Bukofzer, Mantell, Robertson
Goalie Saves: Oland 5, Baldoni 1 (S); May 2, Adamson 1 (M)
USC - 2 2 1 2 = 7
Stanford - 4 2 1 3 = 10
Stanford Goal Scorers: Eaton 4, Seidemann 4, Holshouser, Krueger
USC Goal Scorers: Bekhazi 2, Davies 2, Craig, Kiss, Lucas
Goalie Saves: Oland 7 (S); Anae 8 (USC)