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Men’s soccer earns ninth consecutive win over UCLA

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No. 3 Stanford men’s soccer (5-0, 3-0 Pac-12) returned home to Cagan Stadium after two away matches and soundly beat UCLA (1-3-1, 0-2-1 Pac-12) 4-0, buoyed by a 14-minute second-half stretch that saw the team score three goals. Stanford had four different goalscorers: sophomore defender Keegan Tingey, senior forward Jack O’Brien, senior forward Charlie Wehan and redshirt junior forward Zach Ryan. 

UCLA has not scored against the Cardinal since 2017, although the Bruins came close a few times Saturday afternoon. 

Head coach Jeremy Gunn welcomed redshirt junior goalkeeper Andrew Thomas, redshirt junior defender Andrew Aprahamian and O’Brien back into the starting lineup for this matchup. The trio was unavailable for last week’s overtime victory over San Diego State. 

Stanford largely controlled the match from the start, but was not able to generate many chances in the first half. In the 14th minute, Ryan unleashed a shot over the crossbar for the Cardinal’s first goalscoring opportunity of the game. Ten minutes later, sophomore forward Gabe Segal’s free kick attempt was blocked by the Bruins’ wall.

Stanford continued to control possession and search for the opening goal. In the 40th minute, junior midfielder Will Richmond sprinted into the box, staying by the touchline, and laid the ball off for Tingey, who was able to tuck the ball past the goalkeeper. 

Just before the break, Wehan had a header that went wide of the post. The Cardinal would go into halftime with the 1-0 advantage. 

The team stayed aggressive to start the second period. In the 55th minute, Segal and Ryan played a give-and-go outside UCLA’s box, and Ryan’s powerful shot was well-saved by the Bruins’ junior goalkeeper Justin Garces. 

It would then be UCLA’s turn to threaten the Cardinal. Freshman defender Tommy Silva had his shot blocked by Stanford defenders. Many of the Bruins pushed for a handball call, but the referee was not convinced.  

Just two minutes later, the Cardinal found itself at the other end of the pitch as Wehan drove deep into the box before crossing to his teammate O’Brien. O’Brien deftly found the back of the net, doubling Stanford’s lead. 

In the 68th minute, Wehan would find himself on the receiving end of a cross from Ryan and headed the ball past the keeper. Wehan now is responsible for two goals and three assists this season. 

Stanford would complete its scoring eight minutes later. Redshirt freshman forward Carlo Agostinelli had the initial attempt parried out by Garces, but redshirt freshman midfielder Mark Fisher was able to head the ball back into the box where Ryan could control the ball and fire it into the net. Ryan has been on a tear so far this spring, recording five goals. 

Stanford has now beaten UCLA in nine straight attempts. The Cardinal will stay on campus for next week’s Saturday afternoon match against Oregon State. Kick-off is set for 3 p.m. PT.

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Ells Boone is a desk editor for the sports section. He is a sophomore from Virginia Beach, Virginia, studying communication and economics. You can catch him waking up early on weekend mornings to watch his favorite Premier League team, Tottenham Hotspur, play. Contact him at eboone24 'at' stanforddaily.com.