On February 23, 2008, Stanford kicked off versus Cal at 10am in order to avoid the rain storm predicted to come in later in the day. Unfortunately, the predicted rain storm forced the cancellation of the Crawford XV game. The first half of the match proved to be difficult and messy with scores of penalties and turnovers from both teams. The score at half time was 12-5 with breakaway tries by Jessica Watkins and Jennifer Cooperrider. After regrouping at half time and adjusting their game plan, Stanford’s play was much more calm and collected. The pack began to dominate both scrums and lineouts while the back line executed and completed more plays without penalties. The final score of the game was 19-10. While Stanford pulled out a victory, they are working on cleaning up their play for next weekend’s matches at Davis.
On February 16, 2008, Stanford hosted Chico State at Steuber Stadium. The game opened with a quick Stanford try by Jennifer Cooperrider, set up by fly half Jossy Tseng with a quick tap after a penalty. Chico matched Stanford’s intensity, answering with a threatening attack into their own 22. Their drive was stopped short by a stolen ball from flanker Crista Mendoza – Mendoza passed it to wing Lindsey Innes who went the length of the field for a try. Stanford’s athleticism and speed was showcased further though tries by Jossy Tseng, Melissa Smit, Cooperrider, and Jessica Watkins. Chico’s pack kept Stanford busy all game long with their strength and intensity, but the Stanford pack held strong and provided clean ball for the backs. In the end, Chico put up three tries during the match with two conversions. Stanford totaled seven tries with four conversions, for a final score of 43-19.
When Crawford walked out onto the field, they didn’t know what to expect. Would the repeat Chico first team players be tired, or would they still be on their game? Would the graduated Chico ‘ringers’ fly away with the ball, or would they stay grounded? Breaking out early in the game, Crawford showed that they were a force of might, ready to pass the ball wide and add momentum to the ball carrier. Yet, Chico recovered from this unexpected onslaught and pushed ahead by breaking the Crawford line and bustin’ up some tries. Remembering their previous momentum, however, Crawford did not give up. Space was exploited by Jay-Marie Hill– Aliy Bossert and Mara Stark-Alcala were backs who knew how to get forward. Regina Pair impressed her boyfriend with a try, and Kira Greco impressed herself with one of the same. Balls were passed like flies by the ‘man of the entire day’ Emily Wyatt. The decision making and work rates were up, and Crawford once again pushed ahead in score. Chico did not give up, though, and ended up being up when the clock ran out. 43-47. Yet, at the end of the day, Crawford did not feel the loss because the game was a win in so many other ways. In fact, they reportedly played better than the first team! It’s hard work standing in the shadow of someone else’s dream, but let me tell you, a true second team never looked so damn deadly.