Sports Briefs: Baseball announces schedule, Hardeback continues run at ITA Championships October 4, 2012 0 Comments Share tweet The Daily Sports Staff By: The Daily Sports Staff 2013 Stanford baseball schedule announced A year after cruising through one of the most challenging nonconference schedules in history, the Stanford baseball team is set to play a marginally easier opening stretch this season after announcing its schedule on Monday. Sophomore Alex Blandino and the Stanford baseball team lost several players to the MLB Draft, but will open the season at Rice likely ranked in the top-15 as All-American Mark Appel returns for his senior season (Stanford Daily File Photo).In 2012, the Cardinal rose to No. 1 in the country after sweeping No. 10 Vanderbilt and No. 12 Texas in its first two series before going 4-2 against Fresno State and No. 4 Rice in later nonconference series. It will play the Longhorns, Bulldogs and Owls again this season, but all three of those teams fared much worse than expected last season; Vanderbilt, meanwhile, has been replaced on Stanford’s schedule by unranked UNLV. The Cardinal’s schedule is remarkably balanced; it will never spend two straight weekends on the road, and its only significant homestand is a six-game stretch against UNLV and Utah in March, with a week off for spring break in between those two series. The Cardinal will open the 2013 season at Rice on Feb. 15 before hosting Cal in a Tuesday home opener on Feb. 19. Stanford’s first home series will be the following weekend against Fresno State, the first team to beat the Cardinal last season, and its Pac-12 opener will be a three-game tilt against Utah, which Stanford swept in 2012, the weekend of March 22-24. Instead of ending the season with a traditional rivalry game against Cal, Stanford’s schedule concludes in a three-game home series against UCLA—a top-10 team last season—the weekend of May 24-26. Hardebeck stays alive at ITA All-American Championships Freshman Krista Hardebeck continued her impressive run at the ITA All-American Championships by storming through the qualifying stages and then dominating her first-round match Thursday. Hardebeck defeated seventh-seeded Mary Anne Macfarlane 6-3, 6-0 to keep her week alive and will next face North Carolina’s Caroline Price at 10:45 PDT today. Stanford’s Stacey Tan and Ellen Tsay lost Thursday as a doubles pairing and have both been eliminated in the singles. Meanwhile, junior John Morrissey’s week came to an end with a 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 loss to eighth-seeded KU Singh on Thursday. He had extended his tournament run with a three-set win of his own earlier in the day, 6-4, 4-6, 6-1 over Denver’s Enej Bonin. Matt Kandath paired with Morrissey in the doubles, but the duo was eliminated Wednesday, a day after Kandath had dropped his first-round qualifying singles match. –Joseph Beyda ITA All-American Championships Krista Hardebeck Stanford baseball 2012-10-04 The Daily Sports Staff October 4, 2012 0 Comments Share tweet Subscribe Click here to subscribe to our daily newsletter of top headlines.