By Sydney Shaw
No. 3 Stanford women’s soccer (14-1-1, 7-1 Pac-12) advanced its Pac-12 win streak to four games with a 2-0 shutout victory against Utah (10-3-3, 5-1-1) on Sunday. The Senior Day match was the Cardinal’s last regular season home game, and featured a pregame ceremony honoring the team’s seniors. All five active seniors started the game in front of a record-breaking homecoming weekend crowd, made up of family, fans and alumni.
The senior class, made up of six players, has a career winning record of 68-11-7 and has claimed three conference championships so far.
“The seniors are so important to our team,” sophomore Jordan DiBiasi, the Cardinal’s leading goal scorer, said. “They have created a culture that I feel so lucky to be a part of. They challenge us to be the best versions of ourselves. They are leaders on our team and will be greatly missed next year.”
While the senior class was honored, the sophomore class carried the game. Stanford’s two goals were scored by Kyra Carusa (a redshirt sophomore) and Michelle Xiao, while Averie Collins and Tegan McGrady combined for three assists.
With four saves in the game, senior goalkeeper Jane Campbell is now just three shy of breaking the program record of 35 saves, held by Nicole Barnhart ’04. Campbell’s 33 career shutouts are good enough for third-most in program history, and with just two more, she can tie the program record.
Stanford started off the game with a dominant first half, outshooting Utah 7-2. The Cardinal were quick to attack, forcing the Utes to sit back on defense to protect their own net.
After 20 minutes of play, in which Stanford dominated possession, Stanford put in its first goal. McGrady, one of the Cardinal’s foremost attackers, kicked a left-footed cross to her teammate, Collins, who was running towards the far post of the net.
Collins then headed the ball over her defender’s head and back towards the post, where Carusa finished the play with a header to the top left corner of the net for her third goal of the season.
“We connected our passes and finished the ball,” said DiBiasi regarding her team’s performance during the first half of play.
Less than 10 minutes after the first Stanford strike, the Cardinal fired in their second and final goal of the game.
With continued offensive speed and pressure, Collins was able to beat her defender on a fast-break up the right side of the field. Having created space between herself and her defender, Collins crossed the ball to the center of the box to Xiao, who ran in for the final touch.
Collins recorded her second assist of the game and 13th point in the past eight games.
Collins and her fellow sophomores, McGrady, Carusa, Xiao and DiBiasi, have all put up strong numbers in each of Stanford’s Pac-12 games so far, proving themselves to be some of the team’s most promising players.
For the rest of the match, the Utes tried to gain some momentum. However, with Campbell back in net after spending last week training with the U.S. Women’s National Team, Utah’s scoring attempts were unsuccessful.
In the 83rd minute of play, one of the Utah forwards had a one-on-one opportunity with Campbell. However, Campbell challenged the shot by coming far out of the net and narrowing the angle, allowing the Utes no chance to score.
Next week, Stanford heads back on the road to continue its Pac-12 play against Arizona and Arizona State.
Contact Sydney Shaw at sshaw17 ‘at’ stanford.edu