After playing three consecutive road games, the No. 1 Stanford women’s water polo team returned home and beat No. 5 Hawaii, 10-8.
It was the second time that Stanford (21-0, 5-0 MPSF) matched up with Hawaii (13-7, 3-3) this season, as the two teams met back in late February during the UCI Invitational in which the Card doubled up the Rainbow Wahine, 10-5.
It was a back-and-forth affair between the two teams. Stanford found itself down 1-0 as junior attacker Monika Eggens found the back of the net midway through the first. The Cardinal offense started sluggishly as it missed two five-meter penalty shots in the opening quarter.
Moreover, Hawaii senior goalie Serena Bredin had a stellar quarter with five blocked shots. The Canadian keeper finished the contest with 10 total saves.
Stanford quickly responded in the second frame with four goals, however, including one by sophomore two-meter Annika Dries a minute into the quarter. Eggens scored two quick goals for Hawaii just 36 seconds apart to keep the game close.
In the third quarter, the teams each scored two goals. Stanford got contributions from junior two-meter Melissa Seidemann and freshmen driver Kaley Dodson.
It was 6-5 going into the fourth quarter and the Rainbow Wahine knotted up the score with a goal by sophomore attacker Monique Wilson.
As it has done time and time again this season, Stanford pulled away with a 4-1 run including another clutch goal by Seidemann.
The Cardinal reached the 10 goal mark for the 18th time this season. The strong offensive performance was complimented by a solid defensive outing as all three goalies saw playing time. Sophomore Kate Baldoni tallied six saves in the opening half and senior Amber Oland stopped five shots. Hawaii native and senior Kim Hall entered the game in the final minutes.
Stanford had another diversified offensive outing with five different players scoring. Dries finished with a hat trick and Seidemann, Dodson and sophomore driver Jillian Garton each had a pair.
After last weekend, Dries is first on the team with 47 goals and Seidemann is second with 35. The team has combined to outscore opponents 257-93 on the year.
With another conference win, things start to heat up as the season winds down. The team will travel to Berkeley this weekend for the Big Splash against the No. 2 Cal (21-3, 6-0). That game will have big implications for the MPSF Tournament, which takes place between April 29 and May 1 in San Jose.
The Cal-Cardinal matchup is this Saturday at 7:00 p.m. in Berkeley. Stanford’s home finale follows on Friday, April 22 at 6 p.m. against San Jose State.