By Yousef Hindy
No. 4 Stanford women’s water polo (9-1) is set to take on No. 14 Loyola Marymount (4-6) on Saturday in the first game of the UC Irvine Invitational Tournament. The matchup will be the second of the year between the two teams, as the Cardinal beat the Lions 17-6 at the Stanford Invitational on February 7.
Stanford looks to continue its recent dominant play, as it has outscored opponents 135-53 over the course of the season. Additionally, the Cardinal have beaten several top-10 teams by margins of five or more goals. In their most recent contest, they blanked Brown 17-0.
Redshirt sophomore goalie Julia Hermann was honored this week as the MPSF/Kap7 Player of the Week after a strong performance against the No. 5 UC Davis team, only allowing 5 goals while making 8 saves. In addition, her shutout against Brown was the first of her career. Hermann’s presence in goal will give the Cardinal another edge over LMU.
With a prolific offense led by junior driver Jamie Neushul and freshman driver Kat Klass, who have scored 21 and 19 goals this season respectively, the Cardinal will be looking to regain the No. 1 ranking they held until losing to Cal 5-2 at the Stanford Invitational — the only game the Cardinal did not score in the double digits.
The UC Irvine Invitational will serve as a good opportunity for Stanford to regain its national dominance, as the top six teams in the country will all be attending.
The Cardinal will play a total of four games over the course of the weekend. Should they win their first, they will take on the winner of UC Davis and UC San Diego later in the day. The Cardinal’s first-round match against LMU starts Saturday at 10:30 a.m.
Contact Yousef Hindy at yhindy ‘at’ stanford.edu.