Call it number 10 for No. 18 Stanford (6-1-3, 3-0 Pac-12), as the Cardinal defeated the California Golden Bears 4-2 in the Bay Area Derby Sunday afternoon. Despite their best efforts, the Bears (5-4-2, 1-2 Pac-12) never found an equalizer, and the Stanford Cardinal rolled to victory with their 10th straight win in the rivalry series.
“Every time we cut it to one, we couldn’t get the tying goal, and ultimately they got the edge on the final goal,” Cal Coach Kevin Grimes said in a prepared statement.
There's a scoring party happening in Berkeley right now. @StanfordMSoccer redshirt freshman Zach Ryan scores to put the Card up 4-2.— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) October 8, 2018
A few minutes left in this one. Watch it live on our app: https://t.co/pkdqN7IBSy pic.twitter.com/32a8YTGSqq
A left-footed 14-yard shot from Stanford forward Zach Ryan proved to be the decisive goal. Ryan, the redshirt freshman, assisted by fellow forward Charlie Wehan at the top of the box, delivered a surgical strike into the top left corner in the 83rd minute, locking in the Cardinal’s advantage at 4-2.
Stanford’s leading scorer Amir Bashti continued his strong form, slotting a low shot to the far post—just out of California goalkeeper Drake Callender’s reach in the 26th minute to give the Cardinal the first score of the match.
Just six minutes later, a California handball gifted the Cardinal another opportunity to score. Stanford defender Tanner Beason calmly converted the penalty kick, and the Cardinal entered halftime with a 2-0 lead.
“The second half was much better… we chipped away tremendously,” Coach Grimes recalled after the match.
California forward Simon Lekressner, returning from an injury that kept him sidelined for the beginning of Pac-12 conference play, helped cut his side’s deficit to one goal in the 54th minute. A misguided attempt to clear Lekressner’s lofted cross by Cardinal defender Adam Mosharrafa ended up into his side’s goal.
The Cardinal countered, pushing their edge to 3-1 in the 68th minute, as Beason scored his career-first brace with a header off midfielder Derek Waldeck’s corner kick.
The Bears benefited from a rebound effort by forward Sam Ebstein in the 76th minute to make the score 3-2, but couldn’t overcome Stanford’s stout passing and movement in the final third.
A broken streak
Noticeably absent on the scoresheet was California forward Shinya Kadono. Kadono led the conference with 10 goals and 38 shots and ranked top-10 nationally in goals per game entering Sunday’s match.
Kadono had his five-match goal-scoring streak snapped, despite leading the Golden Bears with three shots. Cardinal goalkeeper Andrew Thomas saved two of Kadono’s chances in the 52nd and 68th minutes, while the captain’s third shot was blocked as time expired.
The Bears have another crack at the Cardinal on Nov. 8, one week before the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
California’s last victory against archrival Stanford was on Oct. 20, 2013, a 1-0 win scored from a rebound of a missed penalty kick in the 86th minute. The Golden Bears were ranked No. 1 in the country then.
California travels to Seattle on Thursday for a 3 p.m. PT match up against the Washington Huskies (6-5, 1-2 Pac-12). Will the Golden Bears bounce back to go 2-2 in Pac-12 play? Do you think Shinya Kadono will be able to showcase his lethal offensive play?