CLAREMONT, Calif. – Saturday morning did not go in the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women's water polo team's favor as La Verne (7-6) managed to hand the Athenas a 10-7 loss. The Athenas (6-13) looked tenacious throughout the game, swarming the Leopards on the defensive end and bothering them with their physicality. However, their struggles on the offensive end gave La Verne opportunities to extend their lead.
Junior Roxy Kiessling (CMC) led the Athenas with five goals while sophomore Claire Baxter (CMC) nabbed four steals and had two assists. Guarina Garcia and Stephanie Rosero each had three goals for La Verne and goalie Cambria Serrano had six saves in two periods of play.
The game started off slow, as neither team found a clear shot on the offensive end. It was until 4:19 left in the period when the Athenas got on board thanks to a goal from freshman Aracelia Aldrete (CMC). The Leopards responded with three straight goals, including a cross-pool outlet pass from Serrano to Rosero to make it 3-1. However, Kiessling hurled a shot halfway down the pool before the clock expired to bring CMS within one.
Sophomore Tess van Hulsen (CMC) found space from mid-distance after taking a pass from Baxter and sniped the ball into the net to tie the game. The Athenas struggled to capitalize and with 2:18 remaining in the half, La Verne took the lead back. Kiessling managed to tie the game again with a penalty shot, but Ardelle Aquino caught the Athenas off-guard in the final 10 seconds to make it 5-4.
The Leopards added two goals in the third period, but Kiessling did not let the Athenas go away, scoring off an assist from senior Shannon Golden (CMC) and nailing a half-pool shot with a second left to tie the game back. However, two exclusions in the fourth period costed the Athenas as La Verne managed to convert on two power play opportunities. With 2:46 left in the game, a goal from Garcia put CMS in too deep of a hole to seal the match.
The Athenas will head out to Whittier College on Wednesday, Mar. 22 to play them at 7 p.m. in hopes of getting back on the win column.
By Young Kim
Sports Information Assistant
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