Stanford 5-1 USF Sophia Smith discusses her first career goal in Stanford's home-opening win over USF [[video] The Card started off with a tepid H1 but finished strong to claim a win against the visitors from San Francisco. Very short bench, missing a lot of players, 1st XI featured 3 frosh and only 4 starters from last season’s championship. Essentially fielding a new squad, resulting in a disjointed and tepid H1. 1st goal was shades of the last goal scored at the Q last season. Their GK punts, Hiatt and Jordan win the headers, Civana mugged while running towards the ball, Sophia runs with the ball and scores. 10 seconds after their GK punts, she picks it up at the back of her net with none of her teammates ever touching it. What a way for Sophia Smith to start her collegiate debut. Although when she’s not scoring goals, she does her best impersonation of Verloo’s touch and Press’ accuracy and decision-making. Still, an undeniable talent. Possesses qualities that are hard to teach - a go-to-goal player, takes on defenders, takes the trash and turns garbage into gold. She will score a lot of goals in college this way because of the dearth of quality defenders. Very dangerous operating outside of the PA, with or without the ball. The key is not to let her get a head of steam, otherwise u r toast. However, just like Press, a mortal inside the PA. Does not, or in Press’ case, can not finish sitters inside the PA. Not an out-and-out PA striker, not yet anyway, but sample size is only 1 game. I see in Sophia shades of the Juventus Henry. Once she develops and refines her technique, she can be comparable to the Arsenal Henry - cutting in from the left, dragging the ball, or leaving the defender with blistering pace, and then scoring at will once inside the PA. USF scored their goal through a combination of poor decisions from Stanford. An innocuous-looking ball sent into the PA was flicked by McG for a CK. With no opponent within 20 yards, Rood should have claimed it. If u want a full-time job, you have to own and boss your box, even your defender. Instead of controlling the ball with no one challenging for it, McG inexplicably shanks it for a CK. In the ensuing CK, the Card commit the cardinal sin of letting the ball bounce inside the box, USF got to it and scored. Stung, the Card fought back. Less than a minute later, Macario was fouled for a PK, which she promptly deposited. She also scored another goal in H2 off a rebound. A minute after that, Civana launched a left-footed missile for the 4th. 10 minutes later, Civana was taken down inside the PA, Jordan deposited the PK for the final score of 5-1. Goad played the full 90 at midfield, and she looked more comfortable than I’ve ever seen her play, by playing centrally than at the perimeter. Girma had some good moments, but she really showed her quality playing at midfield. She was able to utilize more of her passing, and showed her range and lateral quickness. Nice to get a win after a disjointed start. Hopefully there’s more to look forward to, as the Card are only operating at about 60% of what they’re capable of, with that banged-up roster and all. Roster management will be crucial with such a thin roster and a difficult away slate at BYU and at Minnesota, in addition to Tierna’s unavailability due to national team duties. Hope the Card can play 2 complete games next week.