By Ells Boone
Coming off a tough double overtime loss to Saint Mary’s, Stanford men’s soccer (4-4-1, 1-2-0 Pac-12) got the pick-me-up it needed, thoroughly thrashing Bay Area rival Cal (2-6-1, 0-3-0 Pac-12) 5-0 in this season’s first Big Clásico. Junior forward Ousseni Bouda was a force for the Cardinal, finishing the match with two goals and two assists.
Senior midfielder Will Richmond had two goals of his own, while redshirt sophomore midfielder Mark Fisher scored the opener.
It only took Stanford three minutes to get the proceedings started. Redshirt senior forward Zach Ryan played a pass forward for Bouda, who flicked it back to the open Ryan. His shot was blocked by Cal’s goalkeeper but fell for junior defender Keegan Tingey on the left side of the box. Tingey’s shot careened off of the right goalpost, falling for another Cardinal player; this time, Fisher stepped forward and blasted the ball into the back of the net to get Stanford on the board.
The day would only get better for the home team from there.
In the 17th minute, Stanford earned a free kick outside of the box. Bouda found Richmond off of the set piece, and Richmond flicked the ball towards the goal where sophomore defender Noah Adnan headed the ball past the keeper. The Cardinal had doubled their lead.
Six minutes later, Richmond was at the center of things again. The Piedmont, Calif. native’s shot was well-saved by Golden Bear redshirt sophomore keeper Collin Travasos in a one-on-one scenario. In the 28th minute, Richmond would hit the post after a well-placed cross from redshirt sophomore forward Carlo Agostinelli.
10 minutes later, it was Cal’s turn to attack, forcing Cardinal redshirt junior goalie Matt Frank into two quick successive saves. The Golden Bears would come to rue that missed opportunity as Stanford turned around and added its third goal. It was none other than Bouda creating the chance, as he played a low cross into the box where Richmond lifted the ball into the roof of the net.
Stanford took that 3-0 lead into halftime, outshooting its rival 9-4 in the opening period.
After the break, the Cardinal again dominated possession. It took them fifteen minutes to add to the scoreline. This time, Bouda, a Burkina Faso native, turned from assist man to goalscorer, getting his third goal of the season and Stanford’s fourth of the game.
Two minutes later, Bouda came back for more. He received a pass outside the left side of the box from Richmond and dribbled towards the top of the box before unleashing a low shot that the keeper could not reach. A true man-of-the-match performance from Stanford’s top assist man.
Cal would get another opportunity to score. The Golden Bears earned a penalty kick in the 72nd minute. Sophomore forward Nate Carrasco stepped up to take it and fitted the ball past Frank for what everyone thought was Cal’s first tally. However, the referee called it back for encroachment on the penalty area, so Carrasco had to retake it. Opting to shoot it to the same side he previously had, Carrasco’s second attempt was saved by Frank, denying the Golden Bears a goal. Frank had a huge performance for Stanford, stepping up time and time again.
Stanford will now try to take this newfound momentum into the second half of its schedule. Next up on the docket is a home match against Washington on Thursday. It will be a rematch of last season’s Pac-12 Championship-deciding game. Kick off is set for 7 p.m. PT at Cagan Stadium.