No. 5 Stanford men’s soccer (11-2-5, 4-2-4 Pac-12) face High Point University (11-4-5, 5-0-3 Big South) on Sunday to start its quest for the NCAA D-I Championship in the College Cup. Stanford earned its highest end-of-season ranking since finishing No. 3 in 2017, the last time the program took home the championship.
The Cardinal produced their best season in a while, led by a strong senior cohort and a sturdy defense. Although they were bested in the Pac-12 by No. 1 Washington (15-1-3, 7-1-2 Pac-12), there were plenty of highlights along the way, including two Big Clasico wins over Cal (3-8-6, 1-6-3 Pac-12), nine total clean sheets and seven matches in which Stanford scored three goals or more (going 6-0-1 in those games).
Four members of the men’s soccer team were recognized by the Pac-12 for their performances, including senior defender Keegan Hughes, who was named the Pac-12 Defender of the Year, along with being named to the All-Pac-12 First Team. Senior midfielder Cam Cilley also earned a spot on the All-Pac-12 First Team after scoring five goals and recording five assists.
Senior defender Keegan Tingey was included in the All-Pac-12 Second Team, and redshirt freshman Shane de Flores collected an honorable mention after leading the Cardinal in scoring with seven goals.
The Cardinal’s No. 5 ranking earned them a bye to the second round of the College Cup, where they will face High Point, who defeated North Carolina (8-6-5, 2-2-4 ACC) 2-0 in the first round of play. Stanford’s path to the semifinal includes No. 13 Indiana (10-4-6, 3-1-4 Big 10), a program that the team beat in 2017 to complete the “Three-peat” of College Cup victories, and possibly one of No. 4 Virginia (10-4-4, 5-1-2 ACC) and 2020 national champions Marshall (11-3-3, 4-1-3 Sun Belt). If they make it to the semis, the Cardinal could face Pac-12 rival Washington, who they tied 3-3 and lost to 3-0 during the regular season.
Before then, though, Stanford kicks off tournament play versus High Point at Cagan Stadium on Sunday. The game is set for 5 p.m. PT.