By Jeremy Rubin
Barring a reversal of a July 2020 decision from Stanford University, field hockey’s season — and program — reached its presumable end on Sunday.
Facing off against No. 1 University of North Carolina (17-1), No. 13 Stanford (11-3) was unable to advance past the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament for the second year in a row, falling 2-0 in Chapel Hill.
The Cardinal’s defense held up for the entirety of the 60 minutes on the field against the Tar Heels’ stout offensive attack. Junior goalkeeper Hannah Santos finished with six saves — a career-high — as the entire team weathered 16 shots throughout the four periods.
Scores in minutes 23 and 57 proved to be all that North Carolina would need, as Stanford was unable to find the back of the goal all morning. Senior attacker Corinne Zanolli — who finished with a hat trick in the first round of the tournament — had two shots on goal, but both were stopped. Senior midfielder Kaylie Mings and junior defender Juli Porto were the only other Stanford players who took shots, as the team attempted just six total.
Before Sunday’s loss, field hockey won its second-straight America East Championship. Zanolli was named the Most Outstanding Player of the tournament, while sophomore midfielder Megan Frost, redshirt junior defender Sarah Johnson and junior midfielder Fenella Scutt each were named to the All-Tournament Team.
Against the Tar Heels, the team continued its season-long protest of the discontinuation of the program by playing in uniforms with “Stanford” crossed out in black tape. Despite the season’s conclusion, Save Stanford Field Hockey tweeted out “We keep fighting” following the game.