CMS Softball Closes Regular Season With Two 5-4 Losses at Whittier

Maddie Valdez extended her school record to 11 home runs this season
Maddie Valdez extended her school record to 11 home runs this season

WHITTIER, Calif. - The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps softball team had already earned the outright regular season title and the right to host the conference tournament before heading into its final regular season doubleheader at Whittier on Saturday, but ended up on the short end of two 5-4 defeats, the second in nine innings, as it closed out its regular season at 30-9.

CMS will enter next week's conference tournament as the top seed and will have a rematch with Whittier at home on Friday afternoon. The Poets (18-16-1, 15-11 SCIAC) earned the No. 4 seed in the SCIAC Tournament with its two wins today and will draw the top-seeded host Athenas on the first day of the double-elimination tournament, while No. 2 Pomona-Pitzer and No. 3 Chapman will meet in the other opening-round game. 

The day started out as if it would be business as usual for the Athenas, who scored four runs in the top of the first inning in the opener. Sophomore Maddie Valdez had a two-run single to start the scoring, sophomore Kawai Scanlan added an RBI single and senior Rachel Perley put down a squeeze bunt to make it 4-0. 

Whittier, though, got three of the runs back in the fifth on a three-run single from Jade Sanchez with the bases loaded, and then won it with two runs in the seventh, capped off by a two-out RBI single from Ashlei Sanchez. 

Valdez was 2-for-4 with two RBI in the opener, while sophomore Molly Spaniac was 2-for-3, and Scanlan and freshman Lauren Richards were each 2-for-4. 

In the nightcap, CMS rallied with two runs in the seventh to tie it 4-4 on RBI singles from senior Chloe Amarilla and Spaniac, but Jade Sanchez won it with an RBI double in the ninth. Valdez had a solo home run in the second for the Athenas, extending her school record to 11 homers this season, finishing the game 3-for-4 and the doubleheader 5-for-8.

CMS will host the SCIAC Tournament for the first time since 2011, beginning on Friday, when it will look to get the momentum back after suffering its first doubleheader sweep of the season.