April 6, 2011
Saturday, April 9 - 6 p.m. - Stanford, Calif.
No. 1 Stanford (20-0, 4-0 MPSF)
- vs. -
No. 5 Hawai'i (13-6, 3-2 MPSF)
STANFORD, Calif. - No. 1 Stanford women's water polo (20-0, 4-0 MPSF) begins the last of its three regular-season contests at Avery Aquatic Center Saturday night, hosting No. 5 Hawai'i (13-6, 3-2 MPSF) in a 6 p.m. contest.
Last Time Out
The Cardinal ran its unbeaten record to 20-0 with a pair of road wins last weekend, defeating No. 3 USC, 9-8 in overtime, then downing UC Irvine by a 13-4 score.
Annika Dries scored seven goals over the two wins, while Cassie Churnside and Melissa Seidemann each scored three times to pace the Cardinal's offensive showing.
In the cage, the duo of senior Amber Oland and sophomore Kate Baldoni carried the load. Oland made nine saves in Saturday's overtime win at USC, bouncing back from a four-goal first period to hold the Trojans to just four more goals over the remaining 30 minutes of action.
Baldoni, meanwhile, started and went the distance in Sunday's win at UC Irvine, making 11 saves and holding the Anteaters to just four goals.
About The Opposition
Hawai'i (13-6, 3-2 MPSF) has won seven of its past nine heading into Saturday's clash. The Rainbow Wahine dropped last Saturday's showdown with No. 2 California by a slim 7-6 margin. At the start of this week, Hawai'i is currently in fourth place in the MPSF standings, one game ahead of UCLA, with two conference games remaining.
The Rainbow Wahine are led by the play of Monika Eggens, who has scored 37 goals this season. Also high on the scoring list for Hawai'i are Kelly McKee (26 goals), Carmen Eggens (24) and Leonie van der Molen (24).
In the cage, Serena Bredin is fourth in the conference with 8.54 saves per game.
In The National Rankings
The Cardinal remained atop the Varsity Top 20 Poll this week, and have been in the No. 1 spot since the beginning of the season.
Stanford Looks To Continue Perfect Start
Stanford's victories at USC and UC Irvine last weekend brought the Cardinal's season-opening winning streak to 20 games. That figure is the second-best start to a campaign in program history, behind the 2001 Stanford squad which won its first 27 games en route to the first NCAA-sponsored national title game.
MPSF Race Heating Up
The race for the 2011 MPSF regular season title and top seed at the MPSF Championship from April 29-May 1 appears to be a two-horse race as the final three weeks of the season get underway. No. 1 Stanford and No. 2 California are both unbeaten in conference play with records of 4-0 and 5-0, respectively. The Cardinal and Golden Bears will go head-to-head on April 16 in Berkeley in a contest that will very likely decide the top seed at the conference tournament. Should the Cardinal win Saturday's game against Hawai'i, then defeat California next Saturday, then Stanford will clinch the no. 1 seed.
This weekend's Cardinal opponent, Hawai'i, is locked in a battle for third place, tied with USC at 3-2 but technically in fourth place due to an overtime loss to the Trojans earlier this season.
Oland And Baldoni Anchor The Cardinal "D"
This past weekend's wins at USC and UC Irvine proved once more Stanford's dominant advantage in the cage with the duo of senior Amber Oland and sophomore Kate Baldoni. Saturday against USC, despite giving up four first-period goals Oland dug in and held the Trojans off the board for the second period, allowing the Cardinal to make its comeback. Overall, she made nine saves and allowed the Trojans just four more goals over the next 24 minutes of regulation and six minutes of overtime as the Cardinal recorded the 9-8 win.
Sunday, it was Baldoni's turn to take over the cage, where she stopped 11 shots and allowed just four goals in Stanford's 13-4 win at No. 13 UC Irvine.