Despite a statistical domination of rival No. 19 Washington (9-3-1, 2-1-1 Pac-12) for the majority of a cold, hazy Thursday night at Cagan Stadium, a sluggish start by Stanford’s strikers yielded an early Huskies goal, and No. 8 Stanford (9-2-1, 3-0-1) had to settle for a 1-1 draw against its toughest competition for the Pac-12 crown.
The magic of the dreamlike final season faded on a chilly Saturday night at Sunken Diamond when senior Jack Klein grounded out to second base to seal a 4-2 loss to No. 2 seed Cal State Fullerton that officially ended No. 1 seed Stanford’s 2017 campaign.
Stanford plated nine runs from the sixth inning on and launched three homers to finally make an ineffective BYU pitching staff pay for its mistakes as the No. 1 seed Cardinal staved off elimination and pulled away to a 9-1 victory over No. 3 seed BYU behind a vintage brutally efficient performance by senior lefty Chris Castellanos.
Friday night saw a role reversal at Sunken Diamond, with host Stanford playing as the visiting team on its home field thanks to the NCAA’s postseason rules. The Cardinal found themselves out of sorts. Meanwhile, Cal State Fullerton made itself right at home.
Thursday night’s regional opener had been billed as a high-caliber pitching duel between Stanford left-hander Kris Bubic and Sacramento State righty Justin Dillon, the WAC strikeout and WHIP leader and tournament MVP – and at least one of them delivered on those expectations.
In preparation for No. 8 Stanford’s much-anticipated season opener on Friday night against Big 12 opponent Kansas State, The Daily’s Do-Hyoung Park (@dohyoungpark) had a chance to go behind enemy lines with sports editor Scott Popp of The Collegian, the student newspaper of Kansas State University.
Just about every major piece of a special teams unit that proved to be a huge asset to the Cardinal last season will return this year.
In the third installment of our Stanford football preview podcast, Daily football analysts Do-Hyoung Park and Vihan Lakshman get together with KZSU play-by-play broadcaster Nicky Sullivan for an in-depth discussion of the Stanford defense and its various position groups. As an added bonus, they start with an insightful conversation about Ryan Burns being named the starting quarterback and what that means for Stanford’s quarterback situation this year and into the future.