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Stanford beats Cal to claim the Axe for the seventh straight year

The traditional stare down did not lack intensity, either.

No. 24 Stanford beat Cal on Saturday afternoon for the seventh straight time. The 45-31 victory means that the Cardinal gets to hang on to The Axe, the game’s rivalry trophy that’s been around since 1899.

However, there was a moment in which it looked like they may not present The Axe at all. ESPN’s David Lombardi reported that with four minutes left in the game, Stanford students took The Axe to the locker room instead of taking it down to the field, but the game commentators explained they were taking it through the tunnel to get to the other side of the field.

Per tradition, there’s a stare down that goes down with The Axe’s presentation. And these people take it very seriously, folks.

When the staring contest was over, Stanford got to celebrate with The Axe when the game finally ended.

Stanford v California Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Stanford v California Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

This game was pretty close in the first half, as Stanford went to the locker room holding a 17-14 lead. The Cardinal offense got going in the second half, scoring four touchdowns to overpower the Golden Bears and win 45-31.

Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey rushed for 284 yards and three touchdowns, and quarterback Keller Chryst added another two touchdowns on the night. For Stanford, beating Cal definitely counts as a high note for an otherwise down season for the Cardinal.