Stanford's first football trip of the season involved plenty of time changes, including the players getting up on Saturday morning at 4:30 a.m., in preparation for their nonconference test with Army in West Point, N.Y.
Stanford head coach David Shaw, however, said he was more concerned how his coaches would deal with the travel than his players. And, he was right.
The Cardinal handled the trip quite well, with Kevin Hogan throwing for three touchdown passes and Tyler Gaffney scoring twice as No. 5 Stanford rolled to a 34-20 victory over Army in Michie Stadium.
Gaffney rushed for a career-high 132 yards on 20 carries, Ty Montgomery had six catches for 130 yards plus one TD, and Hogan was 11 of 18 for 188 yards passing.
After getting off to a slow start and trailing 6-0, Hogan hit Michael Rector in the first quarter, Montgomery in the second and Gaffney in the third to keep the Cardinal unbeaten at 2-0.
"Defensively it takes a half," Shaw said. "I was reminded of that against their triple option, something we don't see."
Yet, it wasn't a scintillating performance as Stanford grabbed the series lead at 6-5.
"We can't turn the ball over," Shaw said. "And the defense gave up a few big plays. We need to finish better, score touchdowns instead of field goals."
Stanford held a 20-13 halftime lead before finally putting some distance between the Black Knights. Gaffney made it 27-13 on a 23-yard connection with Hogan and added a one-yard run with 9:59 left in the game to give Stanford some breathing room as Stanford extended its overall winning streak to 10 games.
"If they drop their safeties we have to be ready to throw over their heads," Shaw said of Hogan's downfield passing. "I'm glad we were able to get that on game film."
Stanford, which hosts Arizona State in its Pac-12 opener next Saturday at 4 p.m., moved to 34-8 since the start of the 2009 season.
Army grabbed its lead on a pair of field goals before Stanford managed a first down. Hogan's fumble set up the first field goal while a 48-yarder by Dan Grochowski capped a 12-play, 38-yard drive.
Hogan hooked up for a 26-yard scoring strike to Rector, who kept his concentration on a ball tipped by Army's Josh Jenkins. That made it 7-6.
Early in the second quarter, a 25-yard punt return by Kodi Whitfield put Stanford on the Army 46. On the first play, Hogan found a wide-open Montgomery, who made two slick moves, for the touchdown.
"He is so calm and comfortable," Shaw said of Montgomery. "He knows what he sees and he knows what he's doing. When the ball goes up, he comes down with it."
A 31-yard field goal by Jordan Williamson made it 17-6 with 3:53 left in the half before Army's Larry Dixon dashed up the middle for a 15-yard touchdown, to make it 17-13. Williamson kicked a 47-yard field goal just before the half for a 20-13 advantage.
NOTES: Stanford forced a third-quarter Army fumble to extend its nation-best streak of consecutive games with a takeaway to 26 contests . . . In a battle against one of the nation's top rushing defensive units against one of the nation's best ground games, Stanford allowed 284 rushing yards on 61 Army carries.