(Photo: Rand Bleimeister/UCLA)
Stanford (Beattie Goad)
Sweet Sixteen: defeated Penn State 2-0
Penn State had already run Stanford close once this season, and looking at the scoreline, a 2-0 Stanford victory suggests that Penn State were in the contest for much of the 90 minutes. However, in actual fact, Stanford dominated for the entire match. The Cardinal outshot their opponents 35-1, with only a 12-save performance from Penn State goalkeeper Amanda Dennis preventing Stanford from piling up the goals. A 30th minute goal from Catarina Macario handed Stanford the lead, and although the second goal didn’t arrive until the 65th minute through Maya Doms, the Cardinal were hardly troubled. Penn State rarely looked like challenging goalkeeper Katie Meyer, who was not required to make a single save as Stanford marched into the Elite Eight and a matchup against BYU.
Beattie Goad once again came off the bench for Stanford, playing 24 minutes in the win.
UCLA (Rachel Lowe, Teagan Micah)
Sweet Sixteen: defeated Wisconsin 2-0
UCLA weren’t quite as dominant in attack as Stanford in securing their own 2-0 win over a Big Ten opponent in the form of Wisconsin, but their defence was on point throughout the 90 minutes. Teagan Micah was forced into just one save in a complete game performance, with Wisconsin managing just three shots all game. At the other end, UCLA blazed away with 17 shots as the Bruins peppered Badgers goalkeeper Jordyn Bloomer, who made seven saves. A team with UCLA’s attacking class rarely wastes such a dominant performance, and when Mia Fishel slotted home in the 49th minute, UCLA had one foot in the door. A wicked free kick into the top corner from Viviana Villacorta followed just four minutes later, and with Wisconsin showing few signs of pulling back one goal, let alone two, the Bruins rolled into the Elite Eight to face defending champions Florida State in Tallahassee. UCLA have already beaten Florida State once this season, winning 2-1 in Los Angeles.
Alongside Teagan Micah’s 90-minute effort, freshman Rachel Lowe played 13 minutes off the bench, tallying a shot on target in the process.
Washington State (Aly Hay)
Sweet Sixteen: defeated West Virginia 3-0
The only Sweet Sixteen game between two unseeded teams, this clash between Washington State and West Virginia appeared wide open coming into the game. It would be Washington State who got off to a flyer, with Makamae Gomera-Stevens scoring the opener in the 15th minute to set the Cougars on their way. West Virginia had their chances throughout the contest, finishing with five shots on target, but star goalkeeper Ella Dederick was up to the task on each occasion. Meanwhile, at the other end, Washington State’s attack was lethal in the second half. Goals in the 64th and 71st minutes to Morgan Weaver secured the 3-0 win as the Cougars peppered West Virginia goalkeeper Rylee Foster with ten shots on target as they set up an Elite Eight meeting with #2 seed South Carolina.
Ella Dederick continued to stand tall between the posts, leaving Aly Hay and her fellow backup goalkeepers to watch and learn from a Cougars legend once again.