By Yousef Hindy
Coming down the final stretch of its regular season, No. 3 Stanford women’s water polo (17-2, 3-0 MPSF) has an exciting weekend coming up as it hosts No. 7 Cal (19-6, 1-2) and No. 18 San Diego State (11-13, 3-0) on Saturday and Sunday, respectively.
The Cardinal are coming off a convincing 12-5 victory over No. 23 CSU Bakersfield last weekend. Junior driver and team-leading scorer Jamie Neushul recorded her eighth hat trick of the season, while sophomore 2-meter Katie Dudley and senior Gurpreet Sohi also tallied two goals each.
Stanford will look to extend its MPSF regular season winning streak to 43 with wins over both Cal and San Diego State this weekend. The team is poised to do so with an offense that leads the league in goals and a defense that only lets in an average of 5.26 goals per game. In addition, the Cardinal have the advantage of riding the wave of momentum, as they are on a six-game winning streak, with their last loss coming over a month ago in February.
The Cardinal will be looking to avenge their only home loss of the season against rival Cal, where they fell by a margin of 5-2 in the final of the Stanford Invitational in early February. In that contest, Stanford struggled to find the back of the net, going 23:27 without scoring after their first goal. Since then, the team has stepped up their offensive prowess, averaging nearly 13 goals per game.
“Last time, a big problem for us was that we began to splinter individually when things weren’t going our way,” said freshman driver Kat Klass, who ranks second on the team with 33 goals scored on the season. “We became individuals and we are now focused on playing more as a team. We rely on each other to push through the hardship and adversity.”
The Cardinal have not yet played the Aztecs, who have yet to beat a team ranked in the top 15.
Catch the Cardinal at Avery Aquatics Center as they take on the Golden Bears this Saturday at 3 p.m. and San Diego State this Sunday at 1 p.m.
Contact Yousef Hindy at [email protected]