SANTA CLARA, Calif. – In front of a rowdy crowd of over 3,000 fans, including Mary and Mark Stevens, Santa Clara women's soccer beat No. 6 Stanford by a final of 1-0. The win puts the Broncos at 6-3-0 on the season while the Cardinal are 6-2-0.
Santa Clara returns to the field Fri., Sept. 25 at UC Irvine at 7 p.m.
"It was a good solid game by our group but what I'm most proud of is that we stuck to our game plan," said Santa Clara head coach Jerry Smith. "It takes a lot of discipline to stick to your game plan when you're tired and facing a great team. A team like Stanford waits for one wrong decision and capitalizes on it. We made one wrong decision that led to a penalty kick for them but Andi made a great save. We got our chance shortly after that. Megan Crosson put in a great ball on a corner and we got it in. It was a great team effort out there today and it gives us the confidence that we can make a deep run in the NCAA Tournament."
With Mary and Mark Stevens and several VIPs, including Santa Clara University President Fr. Michael Engh in attendance, as well as a packed student section with classes starting tomorrow, the atmosphere was electric in the stadium.
"It's also special to win the game on the day Mary and Mark Stevens were here," said Smith. "We're so thankful for their generosity. The team wanted to win for a number of reasons but that was a big one. Father Engh also blessed the field today so I'm not sure we could have written a better script for tonight."
Dani Weatherholt led the Bronco offense with the only goal of the game on an assist from Megan Crosson. Andi Tostanoski made just one save but it was against a PK to set up the Bronco win. She also impacted the game by snagging several crosses out of the air.
"I just felt it," said Tostanoski on her penalty kick save. "The girl that committed the foul looked at me a little frantically but I knew we were good. I knew what I needed to do and that was the little push we needed to win the game."
Both teams had dangerous scoring chances in the first half but neither could find the back of the net. Grace Cutler led the Bronco offense with two shots on goal while the Cardinal didn't get a shot on net.
In the 50th minute the Broncos had a golden opportunity. A failed clear left the ball to Jenna Roering with just the keeper to beat but her shot was saved. On the rebound Roering shot again but Jane Campbell made the stop from her back to keep the game scoreless.
In the 78th minute Stanford was awarded a penalty kick but Tostanoski stepped up and stopped the shot to keep it a scoreless tie.
In the 85th minute Crosson took a corner that she hit with her left foot. The ball curved towards the goal and Weatherholt deflected it in to give Santa Clara the only goal it would need.
Notes: This the first win for Santa Clara over Stanford since a 2-0 win at home on Sept. 20, 2006. It is also the Broncos first win over a top-10 team since a 1-0 win vs. No. 3 Pepperdine on Oct. 28, 2011.