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Top-ranked women’s water polo opens season with wins against San Jose State, UC Davis
Sophomore Madison Berggren (above) currently leads the team in points, scoring six goals in two games to start the season. (RAHIM ULLAH/The Stanford Daily)

Top-ranked women’s water polo opens season with wins against San Jose State, UC Davis

No. 1 Stanford women’s water polo (2-0) started its season with two wins on Saturday. The Cardinal topped No. 14 San Jose State 17-1 before dominating No. 17 UC Davis 21-2.

Sophomore Madison Berggren led the Cardinal in scoring with six combined goals in the tournament, while seniors Jamie Neushul and Dani Jackovich each had four scores. Senior goalkeeper Gabby Stone made seven saves in the opener against San Jose State after returning from a year of training with the U.S. National Team, while senior goalkeeper Julia Hermann, who won All-American awards in 2016, made nine stops in the rout of UC Davis.

Senior Maggie Steffens led the charge in the opener, collecting a hat trick for the Cardinal. While the Spartans scored in the opening period, the Cardinal defense denied San Jose State another completion. Leading 10-1 at the end of the third quarter, the Cardinal exploded during the final period of the game. Six different players scored seven goals. Shannon Cleary boasted a pair of scores, while Dani Jackovich, Katie Dudley, Jordan Raney, Steffens and Sophia Stefan each added one to the Cardinal’s lead.

The Cardinal’s second game against the Aggies also showed Stanford’s strength. Taking off early in the game, Stanford secured an 8-0 lead after one period. The Cardinal held a 13-1 lead at the half, after two goals from each Raney, Jackovich, Jamie Neushul, Kat Klass and Makenzie Fischer in the first half. Stanford was up 15-1 in the third period when UC Davis scored its second goal. The Cardinal would go on to finish the game on a 6-0 run to secure the win.

Berggren led in scoring with a career-high four goals against Davis, while fellow sophomore Kat Klass collected her eighth career hat trick. Stanford’s 21 goals are its most since March 20, 2015, when it beat Harvard 23-7.

The Cardinal return to Stanford to host Long Beach State on Jan. 29.

Contact Alexandre Bucquet at bucqueta ‘at’ stanford.edu.