Southern California Athletics

PALO ALTO, Calif. – A neck-and-neck battle between No. 1 Stanford and No. 2 USC stretched all the way into sudden-death overtime with the host Cardinal getting a late goal to win 10-9 and claim the Stanford Invitational championship. Kristen Dronberger led all scorers with four goals for the Women of Troy, who fell to 3-1 overall with the loss. The clash with the Cardinal was a rematch of the 2010 NCAA Championship, which USC won in a 10-9 victory in regulation.

This time, USC and Stanford were in stride through the first half of play. Locked up 3-3 at halftime, the Cardinal took a step ahead in the third to lead 6-4 entering the fourth period. There, the Trojans staged a rally to tie it at 6-6. Stanford would go back ahead 7-6 with 2:10 to go, but Dronberger got things even again with a strike with 1:17 remaining on the clock. That tie would hold through the end of regulation to bring overtime.

Stanford jumped ahead again and USC fought back to even it. Madeline Rosenthal scored with 22 second left in the first overtime, only to have Stanford go ahead with a late strike from the perimeter for a 9-8 lead entering the second overtime period. Rosenthal would provide heroics again for USC in the next stretch, scoring to force sudden death.

The first 3-minute span of sudden death passed scorelessly, as did much of the second. But after Stanford took control of the ball with around 25 seconds remaining, the Cardinal was able to get in position for a close-range strike that made it through the goal to stop the game with a Stanford victory.