Cardinals Cruise in Opening Round of NCAA Tournament, 3-0
Nov. 19, 2009
Stanford, Calif. - It had been seven years since Stanford had played an NCAA tournament game, but the Cardinal more than comfortable in a 3-0 win over Saint Mary's of Thursday night. Stanford dominated play to advance to the second round where it will take on UC Irvine.
'I think this was one of our best games of the year,' said head coach Bret Simon. 'I think everybody was ready tonight and we played certainly not a flawless game, but an attractive and purposeful game. We're really excited to move on to the next round.'
The Cardinal came out ready to play, dominating the first half by outshooting the Gaels 12-3 in the period. Just 22 minutes into the match, Stanford took a 1-0 lead on an Adam Jahn goal.
Stanford left back Ryan Thomas carried a ball with his dribble, beating a defender and getting to the end line where he sent a bending cross into the box. From there Jahn spun a side volley with his left foot for his fourth goal of the season.
The goal would be the only score in the half as the Cardinal took a 1-0 lead to intermission.
Saint Mary's came out of the half with a little more energy and created a couple good offensive chances. However, the Stanford defense and goalkeeper John Moore remained stout, recording their eighth shutout of the season.
The Cardinal would add to their lead in the 65th minute when a short goal kick was intercepted by Jahn. The Stanford freshman carried his dribble towards the goal, before laying off a pass to a hard charging Dominique Yahyavi. Yahyavi hit the pass first time to beat Saint Mary's keeper Doug Herrick for his second goal of the year. It was the third assist of the season for Jahn.
Despite his big game, Jahn deflected the praise to his teammates, 'I felt really good, but it's nobody's single victory, we all played as a team.'
Stanford was not done, however, as they tallied a third goal in the 81st minute. Substitute Adoni Levine won a ball in the midfield and started a nifty give and go with Dersu Abolfathi. The return pass from Abolfathi gave Levine just enough space to chip the ball into the top right corner his first goal of the year.
Both Levine and Abolfathi, along with Daniel Leon came off the bench to provide some great energy for the Cardinal.
Stanford finished the match with a 17-8 edge in shots, clearly being the aggressor and creating the most offensive chances.
The Cardinal will now travel of UC Irvine to take on the Anteaters in the second round of the NCAA tournament. Irvine received a bye in the first round and were awaiting the winner of Thursday night's game from Cagan Stadium. The match will kickoff at 6:00 p.m.