Athenas Tame Tigers, Remain Atop SCIAC Standings

Lauren Clubb (CMC) was one of four players to score three goals in the victory. (photo credit: Matthew Fenton)
Lauren Clubb (CMC) was one of four players to score three goals in the victory. (photo credit: Matthew Fenton)

CLAREMONT, Calif. – The No. 22 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women's lacrosse team scored early and often to defeat the Occidental Tigers in a Senior Day showdown between the top two teams in the SCIAC. The Athenas built a comfortable 12-2 lead at the end of the first-half before taking care of business in the second-half for the 18-6 victory. Emily Cohen (CMC), Evan Murphy (CMC), Lauren Clubb (CMC), and Sally Abel (CMC) lead the offense with three goals each in the win.

The Athenas wasted little time getting on the board in the contest, scoring four goals in the first five minutes of the game. Evan Murphy got the scoring started with a tally just 17 seconds into the game off an assist from Mikaela Connell. Emily Cohen then scored a pair of goals in the next 90 seconds to add to the Athenas' lead off passes from Allie Hill (CMC) and Kendall Greenberg (CMC).

Allie Hill capped off the strong start for CMS, making it 4-0 less than five minutes into the game with a goal assisted by Murphy. A timeout from Occidental seemed to settle the Tigers down. Four minutes later, Occidental got on the board, cutting the CMS lead down to 4-1 with a goal from Alessandra Pellicci.

With 20:39 remaining in the half, Lauren Clubb started an extended run for the Athenas that lasted the remainder of the half. Clubb's goals kicked off an 8-1 run to end the half and give CMS a 12-2 lead heading into the break. During the run, Clubb scored all three of her goals in the game and Evan Murphy added two of her own. Cohen, Blaire Southmayd (CMC), and Sally Abel also added tallies during the final 20 minutes of the half.

Not only was the offense stellar during the run, but the Athenas' defense allowed eight Occidental shots over the final 20-plus minutes, resulting in just one goal on a free position shot.

Ciara Byrne scored the first two goals of the second-half for Occidental to close the gap to eight goals at 12-4, but CMS rattled off five-straight scores in a 12-minute stretch to slam the door on the Tigers. During the second-half streak, Abel scored twice and Southmayd, Hannah Graves (CMC), and Emma Johnson (SC) each notched one goal to build a 17-4 lead.

The Tigers scored two of the final three goals of the game, but the Athenas held on for the 18-6 victory.

Between the pipes, Anna Gillespie (SC) played all 60 minutes and made a career-high 12 saves, five more than her previous high of seven at Colorado College on Mar. 18.

Last time the Tigers and Athenas played on Feb. 21, Occidental scored 10 goals. On Saturday afternoon, the Athenas held the Tigers to their lowest goal output of the season with six goals on 27 shots. On the season, Occidental was averaging 16.17 goals per game entering Saturday's game.

With the win, CMS now leads the SCIAC by two games with a perfect 6-0 conference record. The Athenas also extend their winning streak to 12 games and are now 12-1 overall in 2018. CMS will next take the field on Wednesday night when they host Pomona-Pitzer at 7:30 p.m. on Zinda Field.