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Irish defeat No. 14 Stanford 16-5

Matt Puglisi | Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Nearly 11 months after No. 14 Stanford handed No. 17 Notre Dame a heart-breaking 14-13 double-overtime loss at Moose Krause Stadium, the Irish roared to a 16-5 triumph over the Cardinal.

The vengeful victory concluded an undefeated weekend in California for the Irish (2-0) who squeaked by California in an overtime thriller, 12-11 Friday afternoon before crushing the Cardinal (3-2) Sunday.

“Every single aspect of our game was clicking,” coach Tracy Coyne said. “Any win is a good one, but we executed our game plan perfectly and we just played really well.”

Senior midfielders Abby Owen and Meredith Simon each tallied four goals as the Irish jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the contest’s first 18 minutes.

“It was huge [to take an early lead],” Coyne said. “To come out and dominate early really put Stanford in a position where they were playing catch-up, and it’s hard to play your best in that situation.”

Heading into halftime with an 8-3 advantage, the Irish allowed a Cardinal goal before rattling off six additional goals to put the game away.

Senior attackers Lauren Fischer and Kristen Gaudreau each recorded a pair of goals and junior goalie Carol Dixon made nine saves to pick up her second victory in as many career starts.

In Friday’s game against California (1-2), the Irish jumped out to 5-1 and 8-2 advantages before allowing seven consecutive goals to fall behind the Golden Bears 9-8 with only 8:39 remaining in the second half.

“[The Bears] are very athletic and very fast,” Coyne said. “They have a lot of determination and heart. They’ve been down before and rallied back, so they had the confidence that they could do it.”

The Irish quickly rebounded as Owen and Simon both found the back of the net on free position shots to give Notre Dame a one-goal lead with 4:21 left. Simon’s go-ahead goal was the senior’s third of the game.

But the Golden Bears refused to give up. Leanne Zilioli netted the game-tying score on a free position shot with only five seconds left to knot the score at 10 and send the game to overtime.

Owen took the game into her own hands in the extra period. The middle scored both Irish goals to complete the hat trick and secure a 12-11 opening day victory for Notre Dame.

“Overall, it was just a very good trip,” Coyne said.

The Irish return to action Sunday when they welcome No. 15 Cornell in their home opener before heading to Orlando, Fla., to take on No. 4 Duke and No. 8 James Madison during spring break.