Stanford wraps up fall competition in multiple sports

Stanford wraps up fall competition in multiple sports

Welcome to “This Week in Sports.” We are Kenneth King and Charis Charitsis from The Daily’s sports section, and we will be walking you through the major games, events and stories from the past week.

Cross country

On Nov. 18, the No. 10 men’s and No. 7 women’s cross country teams competed at the NCAA Championships in Charlottesville. Senior Ky Robinson, the reigning Pac-12 cross country champion and a two-time 2023 NCAA track champion (5k and 10k), placed third, running the 10k race in 28:55.7.

The men’s team took eighth with 291 points, ahead of the other Pac-12 teams in the field. The remaining runners who scored for Stanford were junior Robert DiDonato (29:59.3), freshman Lex Young (30:19.5), senior Cole Sprout (30:31.4) and fifth-year student Evan Burke (30:48.4). Oklahoma State took first with 49 points, ahead of Northern Arizona with 71 points. 

Robinson earned the West Region Men’s Athlete of the Year award, while men’s distance coach Ricardo Santos was named the West Region Men’s Coach of the Year.

In the women’s 6-kilometer (3.93-mile) race, the Cardinal placed 12th with 357 points. The team ran as a pack; all scoring runners completed the race within a span of 34 seconds.

Freshman Amy Bunnage took 59th in 20:18.3. Senior Lucy Jenks placed 93rd in 20:38.4, while freshman Sophia Kennedy finished two places behind in 20:38.7. The next Cardinal runner was fifth-year Grace Connolly, who took 98th in 20:40.5, followed by sophomore Riley Steward, who placed 128th in 20:51.9. NC State won the title with 123 points, just a single point ahead of Northern Arizona, who finished second with 124 points.

Men’s water polo 

No. 4 Stanford (16-8, 2-4 MPSF) closed out its season at the MPSF Championship. On Nov. 16, the team cruised to a 24-4 victory over Austin College (7-12, 4-2 MPSF). Senior Jackson Painter and freshman Daniel Mnatsakanian led the offense with a hat trick each, while six other athletes scored two goals a piece. 

Two days later, the Cardinal competed against No. 2 Cal (21-5, 3-3 MPSF). The game was close throughout. However, Cal, which led for most of the contest, pulled away by three-goal margins twice in the fourth period.

Stanford fought back and sent the match to overtime, 13-13 at the end of the regulation. In overtime, the Bears regained the lead with two consecutive goals to take a 13-15 lead with 1:09 left in the second extra period. 11 seconds later, Stanford narrowed the deficit, but time ran out before the Cardinal could complete a second comeback and were on the short end of a 14-15 score as the final buzzer sounded.

Senior Riley Pittman scored five goals for the Cardinal. Freshman Alex Gheorghe and Painter added four goals each. Junior goalkeeper Liam Harrison finished the match with a career-high 17 saves. 

The next day, the team competed against No. 1 UCLA (24-2, 7-0 MPSF) for third place. Stanford led through three periods. Going into the last period, the Cardinal had an 8-6 lead. However, the Bruins came back with three goals in the fourth quarter, tied the game 9-9 and sent it into overtime.

Stanford scored twice in the first overtime period to take an 11-9 lead. UCLA cut the deficit to a single goal with 28 seconds left in the second extra period, but the Cardinal did not let the Bruins get any closer, sealing the 11-10 win.

Pittman scored four goals, while senior Ethan Parrish and redshirt sophomore Grant Watson tallied two goals a piece. Harrison had 14 saves, including a penalty.


Stanford (3-9, 2-7 Pac-12) closed out its final Pac-12 season with two home games. On Nov. 18, the Cardinal dropped the 126th Big Game, falling 15-27 to Cal (6-6, 4-5 Pac-12) in front of a sold-out home crowd. 

The Bears struck first with a touchdown and extra point with five minutes remaining in the first quarter and maintained a lead throughout the game. The halftime score was 6-14. In the third quarter, the Bears scored a touchdown to go ahead 6-21. 

However, the Cardinal worked their way back to the game as freshman wide receiver Tiger Bachmeier caught a touchdown pass and, shortly after, senior kicker Joshua Karty made a 50-yard field goal, narrowing the deficit to six (15-21). The Bears restored their double-digit lead early in the fourth quarter when their quarterback, Fernando Mendoza, threw a season-high third touchdown pass, this time to wide receiver Jeremiah Hunter. 

The score remained at 15-27 until the game concluded, and the Bears kept the Axe for a third consecutive year. 

On Saturday, Stanford hosted No. 17 Notre Dame (9-3) for the Legends Trophy. The Cardinal forged a mid-second-quarter 16-14 lead on the strength of three Karty field goals, one from 56 yards and a 14-yard touchdown run by Bachmeier. Thereafter, the Irish dominated, scoring touchdowns on five straight offensive possessions and then on a 60-yard return of a blocked Karty 54-yard kick attempt. A late four-yard touchdown run by sophomore quarterback Justin Lamson closed out the scoring in the 23-56 loss.

Notably, Karty’s 56-yarder is the longest by any kicker at Stanford Stadium since its renovation in 2006.

Women’s swimming

Stanford recorded its first NCAA “A” standard time of the season at the four-day Texas Swimming Invitational between Nov. 15 and Nov. 18.

Junior Aurora Roghair posted a 4:37.10 in the 500 freestyle final to meet the NCAA “A” standard cut time, winning the race by more than a full second. Sophomore Lucy Bell won the 400 individual medley with a mark of 4:03.25, while freshman Caroline Bricker took third with a 4:03.39 — both NCAA “A” standard times. Roghair won the 1650 freestyle event in 15:52.82. Bricker took second in the 200 breaststroke final in 2:06.85, the third fastest in Cardinal history. 

Roghair, Nordmann, Mannion and sophomore Kayla Wilson garnered two NCAA “A” standard cut times in the 400 free and 800 free relays.

Men’s swimming & diving

Also in Austin, freshman Rex Maurer, senior Luke Maurer, freshman Henry McFadden and sophomore Andres Dupont took second place in the 800 freestyle relay in 6:12.28, hitting an NCAA “A” standard time. 

The next day, Rex Maurer won the 500 freestyle in 4:11.88 and the 400 medley relay team of Rex Maurer, Dupont, senior Ethan Dang and sophomore Rafael Gu won the event in 3:06.13. 

On Nov. 17, Gu won in the 100 fly in 45.07, and Rex Maurer was victorious in the 400 individual medley, finishing in 3:41.27. 

The 200 freestyle relay team of Gu, Luke Maurer, freshman Jonathan Tan and junior Avery Voss posted another “A” standard time, winning the race in 1:16.75. 

The Cardinal closed out the meet with two victories on Nov. 18. In the 100 freestyle, Gu took first in 42.40, and in the 400 free relay, Dupont, Gu, Tan and Luke Maurer tallied another “A” standard time and captured the victory with a mark of 2:48.54. 

On Nov. 17 and on Nov. 19, junior diver Jack Ryan won the three-meter springboard with a total score of 799.05 and the one-meter springboard with a total of 745.55 at the Trojan Diving Invitational in Los Angeles.


Stanford claimed the PCCSC Fall Open Championship between Nov. 18 and 19. The Cardinal took the lead at the outset, which they never surrendered. In 30 races across the A, B and C divisions, Stanford won 24 races and took second or third in the remaining six. Notably, the team consisted entirely of freshmen, as members of the 2022-23 championship team stayed at The Farm to be honored at Saturday’s Big Game.

Women’s squash

No. 4 Stanford (1-2, 0-0 MASC) opened its season in Princeton, N.J., facing three top-10 teams in three consecutive days. 

On Nov. 17, the team lost 2-7 to No. 5 UPenn (6-0, 0-0 Ivy League). 

The Cardinal bounced back the next day with an emphatic 8-1 win over No. 10 Columbia (1-2, 0-0 Ivy League).

On Nov. 19, the Cardinal fell 3-6 to No. 3 Princeton (1-0, 0-0 Ivy League). Freshman Maeve Baker came close to winning all her matches, but suffered a narrow loss (11-9, 5-11, 11-7, 12-14, 11-13) to Princeton’s India Stephenson.


On Nov. 19, Stanford’s men’s and women’s fencing teams each went 1-3 at the Elite Invitational at Ohio State. 

Senior Joy Yun, the reigning MPSF Fencer of the Year, finished a combined 6-0 at saber against No. 9 Duke and No. 7 UPenn, improving her season record to 22-3. The No. 14 Cardinal lost narrowly against No. 5 Northwestern (13-14) and UPenn (12-15) and fell also to Duke (11-16) while they beat North Carolina (15-12). 

The men’s team beat Cleveland State, 23-4, but lost to No. 7 UPenn (11-16), No. 9 Duke (10-17) and North Carolina (13-14). Senior Kai Rayle went 10-2 at epee and freshman Jared Hammerstrom went 9-3 at saber.

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