Arizona soccer falls to Stanford, Cal
Facing two highly ranked opponents over the weekend, Arizona soccer dropped both its games in the Bay Area and remains winless in the Pac-12 this season.
The Wildcats (5-4-3, 0-3 Pac-12) opened the weekend with a 2-1 overtime loss at No. 2 Stanford on Friday before falling to No. 11 Cal also by the score of 2-1 on Sunday.
Sunday’s game was a back and forth affair where Cal scored early when Golden Bear senior forward Rachel Mercik made it 1-0 in the fourth minute on a breakaway. Cal outshot Arizona 11-3 by in the first half.
The Wildcats battled back in the second half to tie it with a strike from senior midfielder Jazmin Ponce in the 52nd minute but Cal regained the lead with about 20 minutes remaining in the game when forward Ifeoma Onumonu tapped in her shot and sealed the game for the Golden Bears.
Cal outshot Arizona 23-9 for the game but junior goalkeeper Gabby Kaufman kept the Wildcats in the game throughout with her eight saves.
“Our players did a great job to get back in the game in the second half,” said head coach Tony Amato in a press release. “We scored a good equalizer as a result but it wasn’t enough on the day. We continue to get better and will work to make those hard fought games turn into positive results for us.”
On Friday at Stanford, the Wildcats scored an equalizer late in regulation to force overtime but a goal in the first extra period gave the Cardinal the 2-1 victory and in the process kept two impressive streaks alive. The Cardinal have now won 73 games in a row at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium and 44 in a row in conference overall.
In the first half the Wildcats outshot Stanford 13-7 but the Cardinal was the only team to find the back of the net. Arizona had several good opportunities to score in the half but Stanford’s freshmen goalkeeper Jane Campbell stymied the Wildcats’ attack, stopping several point blank range shots on goal.
The Wildcats flipped the script on the Cardinal in the final 45 minutes when they scored the half’s only goal despite being out shot 10-5 in the period. Arizona’s goal came off a defensive mistake from Stanford when junior Ali Doller intercepted a pass from a Cardinal defender in the penalty box and her shot off the post was redirected into the goal by junior Emily Lai to tie the game 1-1 with 12 minutes left.
Stanford scored the golden goal with in the 100th minute, just before the first overtime was to end.
The Wildcats continue their five-game Pac-12 road trip at Oregon State and Oregon next weekend.
—Follow Brian Peel @BrianPeel91