College Cup: Stanford Holds on to Beat BYU

College Cup: Stanford Holds on to Beat BYU
by Victor Olorunfemi
December 2, 2023

CARY, N.C. -- Two goals in the first five minutes were all the Stanford Cardinals needed to defeat BYU 2-0 and advance to their first national final since 2019. Allie Montoya and Maya Doms scored the goals, but it took a remarkable defensive effort from the center back partnership of Kennedy Wesley and Elise Evans, as the Cougars took 20 shots but could only manage three on target as Wesley and Evans blocked attempt after attempt. Stanford will meet Florida State in Monday’s final in a battle of two unbeatens.

Montoya opened the scoring just 78 seconds into the game with a back post curler landing perfectly into the side netting. And before the Cougars could get their bearings, Stanford took advantage of the momentum by stringing together a beautiful 16-pass sequence resulting in a long range strike from Doms. 

Speaking of the goal in the post-game press conference, Doms revealed her state of mind as she took on the incredible effort. "Ken played me a great ball, I turned, cut to my right, which is my sweet spot, and just hit it top corner. It was pretty unreal."

But as the Cougars proved in the previous two rounds, they are never out of a game. And what resulted from the early disappointment was an offensive barrage that saw the team hit the post on multiple occasions, dominate possession, and take shot after shot in an admirable effort of a team leaving it all out on the field. The final shot count reads 20-3 but it is Stanford who walks away with a date in the final.

BYU Senior, Jamie Shepherd, who played the full 90 and is the progam's all-time appearance leader, spoke to the mammoth effort the team put forward despite the early setback. "We just wanted to walk off the field knowing that we gave everything, with no regrets. It's hard to lose but we are super proud of this team."

Stanford will play Florida State on Monday night in a meeting of two unbeaten giants.

Related Topics: Pacific 12
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