Cal Earns Big Win On The Farm
STANFORD, Calif. - California used a strong defensive effort and first half goal from Mia Fontana to clinch a 1-0 win against reigning national champion and cross-bay rival No. 23 Stanford on Saturday night at Cagan Stadium.
It was the Golden Bears first win against the Cardinal since Nov. 2013.
The Cal defense was put to the test early in the game. In the second minute, Emma Westin made it down to the attacking third and sent a clear pass to Abby Borchers that was just out of reach. Stanford held possession for most of the next 38 minutes and took 11 shots in the first half. The Cardinal had back-to-back shot attempts from Jojo Harber and Maya Doms in the ninth minute, giving Cal keeper Angelina Anderson her first saves of the night.
The Cardinal had a dangerous opportunity in the 28th minute when Doms sent a shot that hit the crossbar and nearly bounced into the net before being kicked away by Emily Smith. Anderson matched her then-season high four saves in the 40th minute when Civana Kuhlmann sent a shot towards the crossbar.
The Bears took their first and only shot of the half in the 42nd minute that led to a first time goal from Mia Fontana. Fontana's goal, assisted by Emma Westin, marked the first Cal goal against the Cardinal since Nov. 2016 as the Bears took a 1-0 lead into halftime.
"Emma got the ball and saw that I was open on the left," Fontana said. "We really hadn't tested Katie Meyer [Stanford goalkeeper] yet, so I decided to rip a shot. It was my first goal as a Bear in two years due to being injured and I seriously couldn't be happier!"
The second half showed more balance from the Bears. While Cal had only three shot attempts in the final 45 minutes, the Bears were able to control of the ball. Keely Roy collected the first Cal corner in the 47th minute, setting up offensive momentum for the Bears. Roy took two powerful shots in the 52nd and 55th minutes that both slid just past the box. Skylar Briggs took the last Cal shot of the evening in the 67th minute that was blocked by a Stanford defender.
Despite being outshot 21-4 by the Cardinal, Cal's defensive precision led to a shutout win. Goalkeeper Angelina Anderson played big with a season-high nine saves, just one short of her career-high. Stanford's Madison Haley sent a close shot in at the 77th minute, but the ball went high with Anderson directly in front of the forward. The Cardinal received an equalizing opportunity in the 87th minute when Kuhlmann earned a penalty kick. Anderson dove to the left corner for a game-winning save, securing the win for the Bears.
Cal returns to Berkeley on March 26 to face Oregon at 7 p.m. on Witter Rugby Field, followed by a March 28 game against Oregon State at 1:30 p.m.