Half of Stanford’s singles lineup has been to the NCAA quarterfinals before — and beyond. But while it was senior Kristie Ahn, sophomore Krista Hardebeck and junior Ellen Tsay that had experienced the pressure and stakes of a deep national tournament run before, it was the newcomers — freshmen Taylor Davidson, Caroline Doyle and Carol Zhao — that looked most at home on Saturday as No. 11 Stanford (20-2, 8-2 Pac-12) took down No. 3 Virginia (24-6, 12-2 ACC), 4-2, to clinch a spot in the Final Four.
As constituted, the NCAA’s business model allows its administrators to rake in millions of dollars in annual compensation while the athletes get nothing. Zero. Zilch. Nada.
For as well as the Stanford men’s basketball team played on Thursday night in dominating Arizona State in the Pac-12 tournament quarterfinals, the Cardinal failed to remotely resemble that same squad on Friday. The second-seeded UCLA Bruins (26-8, 12-6 Pac-12) outplayed Stanford (21-12, 10-8) from the outset in Friday night’s Pac-12 semifinal, defeating the Cardinal 84-59 in a one-sided rout.