April 14, 2007
The No. 2 Bruins relinquished first place in the MPSF standings with a narrow 7-6 loss to No. 1 Stanford at the Avery Aquatics Center on the campus of Stanford University. The Bruins fell behind early, but stormed back with three goals in the fourth quarter to force their first overtime of the season. The Cardinal won the match when Lauren Silver scored on a penalty shot with 1:33 left in the game. The loss drops UCLA to 20-2 on the season and 9-1 in MPSF play.
This game was eerily similar to the regular season match between these two teams last year. On April 15, 2006, UCLA jumped out to an early lead, but then Stanford outscored UCLA 3-1 in the fourth quarter to force overtime. The Bruins regained their composure in overtime to defeat the Cardinal 9-8.
This year, it was Stanford that jumped out to the early lead, scoring two quick goals in the first few minutes of the first quarter. Jillian Kraus got the Bruins on the board to cut the lead to 2-1, but then Christina Hewko scored her second goal just seconds later to put Stanford up 3-1 after the first quarter.
The Bruins scored first in the second and third quarters, but the Cardinal answered right back after each goal to maintain a two-goal lead heading into the fourth quarter. In the fourth quarter, the nation's best offense finally gained some momentum. Brittany Rowe scored two goals on back-to-back possessions to tie the game 5-5. Hewko scored her third goal of the game to put the Cardinal up one with just three minutes remaining in the game. But then Courtney Mathewson scored her second goal for the Bruins to force overtime.
Both teams held the other scoreless for the first period of overtime. In the second overtime, Stanford was able to draw a penalty shot with just 1:33 left in the game. Lauren Silver converted the penalty to put the Cardinal up 7-6. UCLA was unable to score on their last few possessions as Stanford held on for their second win over the Bruins this season.
Both goalies amazed the crowd with stellar play. Emily Feher, last week's MPSF Player of the Week, and Stanford goalie Meridith McColl combined for 20 saves in the match. Both teams were unable to convert on any six-on-five opportunities.
The Bruins will play another MPSF game at San Jose State tomorrow.
UCLA Goals: Brittany Rowe 2, Courtney Mathewson 2, Jillian Kraus, Gabrielle Domanic
UCLA Saves: Emily Feher 9
Stanford Goals: Christina Hewko 3, Jessica Steffens, Lauren Silver, Katie Hansen, Alison Gregorka
Stanford Saves: Meridith McColl 11