Women’s Soccer Falls to No. 7 Stanford, 5-0
STANFORD, Calif. – The University of Utah women's soccer team suffered a 5-0 defeat at the hands of the No. 7 Stanford Cardinal on Thursday evening in Pac-12 Conference action at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium.
The Utes are now 6-7-4 in 2022 and 2-5-2 in the conference while the Cardinal improves to 15-2-1 and 8-1.
"We were beaten by a better team today," said coach Hideki Nakada, "and for the first time this season, we were simply outplayed throughout the match and weren't able to show our qualities. We had a game plan going in, but when you give up a goal 90 seconds into the match, it kind of throws things off and unfortunately we were never able to recover."
Stanford finished the night with a 28-8 edge in shots, including a 14-3 difference in on-frame tries. Brooklyn Blaylock and Kelly Bullock tied for Utah's team lead with two total shots and goalkeeper Evie Vitali set a season-high by making 10 saves.
The Cardinal went on the attack immediately and registered three shots in the first two minutes, with the third paying off in the form of an Elise Evans goal. The Utes did their best to equalize, as both Ryann Cull and Taliana Kaufusi put shots on frame just minutes later, only for Stanford's Ryan Campbell to save both tries.
The home team increased its advantage in the 20th minute, when Samantha Williams found the back of the net and Abby Greubel made the score 3-0 in the 35th minute. Utah had another chance to get on the board in the 37th minute thanks to an on-target effort by Blaylock, but Campbell's third save ensured the score stayed 3-0 at the break.
Greubel pushed her team's advantage to 4-0 with another score in the 48th minute and, despite several stops by Vitali, Amy Sayer put in the host's fifth goal in the 68th minute. The Utes did their best to get on the board, tallying three shots in the final 15 minutes, but they were unable to put one past the keeper.
"We will regroup to get ready for Sunday's massive game at Cal," said Nakada, "as it is a must-win for us to have a chance to play beyond the regular season."
Another opportunity will come on Sunday, when the Utes are scheduled to take on the California Golden Bears at 4 p.m.