September 15, 2011

Santa Clara Set To Face No. 1 Stanford at Buck Shaw

Interview with Julie Johnston
Interview with Bianca Henninger
Interview with Jerry Smith

SANTA CLARA
, Calif. - The 19th-ranked Santa Clara Broncos women's soccer team will be taking on the No. 1 Stanford Cardinal on Sun., Sept. 18 at 8 p.m. at Buck Shaw Stadium. Taking on the top team in the country is nothing new for Santa Clara and head coach Jerry Smith. Under his guidance the Broncos have knocked off the top ranked team four times and played to one draw. Three of those wins and the one tie came on the Broncos' home field.

"The Santa Clara and Stanford match has always been a great match," said Smith. "Recently, Stanford has gotten the better of us by knocking us out each of the last two years in the NCAA tournament. Over the history of the rivalry it certainly has gone back and forth and that's what makes it a rivalry. We've won our share of regular season and NCAA tournament matches against them. I think this year is going to be another great match."

The program's first upset of a No. 1 team came on Oct. 13, 1996 when the Notre Dame Fighting Irish came into Buck Shaw stadium and fell to the Broncos by a score of 3-1. The last time Santa Clara beat the No. 1 team was on Sept. 9, 2005 again against Notre Dame at Buck Shaw where the Broncos were victorious 2-1.

Santa Clara and Stanford have played once before when Stanford was ranked No. 1 and that game took place on Oct. 5, 2007 at Buck Shaw. The Broncos and Cardinal played to a 0-0 tie that day.

The local rivalry between Santa Clara and Stanford generates a genuine intensity and excitement since the schools are located only 20 miles apart in the Bay Area. Add in the fact that Stanford is ranked No. 1 and the Broncos are No. 19 and Smith expects a great game.

"They're undefeated and we're undefeated and we look forward to the challenge of playing the best of the best," added Smith. "We're also looking forward to playing at home with our students coming back into town. I expect several thousand fans to show up at the match so I expect great energy, great play from both teams and great drama in the match. For both teams it will allow us to understand where we are a third of the way through the season and what we need to work on so that when we get to the NCAA tournament we'll be well prepared to win those matches."

Be sure to stick around for halftime as Santa Clara will be retiring the jersey of former Bronco star and World Cup Champion Brandi Chastain. For tickets to the game call the Bronco Ticket Office at (408) 554-4660 or email at BroncoTickets@scu.edu.