With her squad facing the top-ranked team in the country, coach Lisa Oyen challenged the Arizona Wildcats to make the most of playing the best.

Problem was, the Arizona soccer team could meet that challenge only for short stretches.

Stanford defeated the Wildcats 3-0 Sunday at Murphey Stadium behind goals from Christen Press, Allison McCann and Lindsay Taylor.

Arizona dropped to 5-9-2 overall, 1-4 in the Pac-10.

"I told them to put it out there and put your best foot forward," Oyen said. "They come to Arizona to play in these games. They come here to play against the best in the Pac-10 and the nation.

"We wanted them to put it out there and put the best team forward."

Stanford (15-0-2, 6-0) applied pressure on Arizona early, pinning the Wildcats deep in their own half and unabashedly shooting from any distance.

Press opened the scoring with a long-range effort that beat goalkeeper Ashley Jett from about 25 yards in the 16th minute.

It was the 19th goal in 17 games this season for Press, an All-America forward who also has played for the U.S. under-23 national team.

Stanford went into halftime with a 1-0 lead, but an increase in pressure from Arizona, notably Shannon Heinzler and Jazmin Ponce, meant the Wildcats opened the second half on a stronger foot and nearly tied the game.

Heinzler drew a penalty in the 58th minute after being fouled from behind on a breakaway after her pressure led to a Stanford turnover.

But freshman midfielder Ana Montoya failed to convert the penalty kick, driving her shot wide left, missing a golden opportunity to level the score.

The Cardinal grabbed complete control of the game with a 61st-minute goal from McCann off a low cross from Teresa Noyola and, four minutes later, when Taylor beat Jett with a low far post shot after an individual dribbling effort down the left flank.

"I don't think we played with the confidence and belief for the entire 90 minutes," Oyen said.

Up next

• What: Arizona at Oregon

• When: 7 p.m. Friday