Sports

A draw keeps Stanford men atop Pac-12 soccer standings

 

Drew Skundrich knocked in his fourth of the season early in the second half and the eighth-ranked Stanford men's soccer team played to a 1-1 draw with visiting No. 19 Washington on Thursday night.

Stanford monitored the Air Quality Index all the way to game time, clearing the way for the match to be played.

There were other areas in the region where the AQI was enough to cancel outdoor events.

Washington (9-3-1, 2-1-1) grabbed the lead in the 21st minute but the Cardinal (9-2-1, 3-0-1) responded early in the second half to tie it.

Byrce Marion played it back to Nico Corti, who lofted his ball just past midfield. A deft, back-footed flick from freshman Jack O'Brien sprung Tomas Hilliard-Arce in the box. Hilliard-Arce drew out Saif Kerawala and Skundrich one-timed his pass into an empty goal.

"That was great composure from Tomas," Stanford coach Jeremy Gunn said. "He'll probably be knocking on the office door asking to play up front now, but it was wonderful. That's a center back and a center mid first up the field dragging the game forward. It was a great response. When you start poorly you could easily fold and we didn't."

The Huskies peppered Nico Corti with four shots in the game's first 21 minutes, with the final one finding its way past the Cardinal keeper.

Over the final 89 minutes, Washington managed to get off five shots. Stanford flipped the script entirely, firing off 17 attempts in the second half and overtimes and constantly working its way into scoring positions.

In the 74th minute Sam Werner hit one that was curling to the near post and knocked away by Kerawala.

Eight minutes later Derek Waldeck had a chance skip wide and with 20 seconds remaining in regulation, Foster Langsdorf nearly won the game from an incredibly tight angle at the endline, but his shot slid past the front of goal.

"When we talked about what we needed and we put in people that wanted to do it we were magnificent," Gunn added. "I hate to talk about the first 15 minutes, but that's the whole game there. If we come out like we should then we're on the front foot the whole game. After [the first 15 minutes they looked dangerous on counters and had a couple of looks, but we took the next eight out of 10 rounds."

A scramble in the box led to a Quentin Pearson header that was deflected away, but Garrett Jackson headed it back in the attempted clearance and Rice bounced it to the far post for his fourth of the year to give UW the early advantage.

Stanford is 2-3-2 against the Huskies since 2014 with none of the last five being decided by more than a goal.

"They're always incredible games," Gunn commented on his team's play against Washington. "I don't think we've had a dull game since I've been here. They really bring out the best in both teams and Coach Clark does an excellent job. They have a great, competitive group and we always have knock-down, drag-out battles. It's as simple as that."

Stanford is scheduled to host Oregon State on Sunday at 11 a.m. in a match televised on Pac-12 Networks.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Stanford Athletics

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