By Niles Egan
No. 19 field hockey (10-6, 2-0 AEC) looks to keep their undefeated record in conference play as they head across the Bay to take on rival Cal (7-8, 1-1 AEC). The Cardinal enter the match having just handily won an away game against conference opponent UC Davis on Sunday.
In recent years, Stanford has dominated the Golden Bears, and have lost only twice in their previous 18 meetings. In the rivalry match on the Farm earlier this season, senior goalkeeper Kelsey Bing shutout California, and the Cardinal soundly won 2-0.
Bing will soon be seeking to help Team USA land a spot in the 2020 Olympic Games.
On Tuesday, junior attacker Corinne Zanolli can be expected to play a particularly significant role. Last year, Zanolli had a breakout season, setting the single-season school record with 26 goals in her sophomore campaign. This season, she’s already had three hat tricks. Having scored 22 times this year, Zanolli also leads the nation in goals.
Sophomore midfielder Fenella Scutt and redshirt sophomore defender Sarah Johnson can both also be expected to contribute heavily against Cal. Scutt averages .73 assists per game and Johnson averages .77, nationally ranking them eighth and sixth, respectively, in that category. In their most recent game against UC Davis, Scutt tallied both a goal and an assist. Johnson also recorded an assist.
Stanford will also be looking for scoring opportunities off of penalty corners. Of their 43 goals this season, the Cardinal have notched 16 scores resulting directly from penalty corners. Zanolli’s 22nd goal of the season against UC Davis came off of a corner.
With just one more conference game on the schedule after this Tuesday, Stanford wants a strong finish to the regular season ahead of postseason play. The Cardinal have won two of the past three America East Conference championships and have also qualified for the NCAA tournament in 10 of the past 12 seasons. To guarantee qualification for the NCAA tournament, Stanford will have to win the America East Conference tournament which starts on Nov. 6. Ending the regular season on a win streak will help give the team some momentum as they enter the postseason.
Under current head coach Tara Danielson, the Cardinal have consistently been successful. In each of Danielson’s nine years at the helm of the field hockey program, Stanford has won at least thirteen games. A win on Tuesday would continue the Cardinal’s sustained success.
Stanford will play against Cal in Berkeley at 3:00 PM PT on Tuesday, Oct. 22.