CLAREMONT, Calif. – The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women's water polo team has maintained its momentum, as the Athenas (8-17, 2-3) defeated Chapman University 10-7 on Wednesday night at Axelrood Pool to move up a spot in the SCIAC. The Panthers (7-18, 3-2) struggled to string a significant run to threaten the Athenas as junior Mariah Mastrodimos (SC) and the defense did an excellent job containing the attack. Mastrodimos finished the game with eight saves and made several key passes into the offensive half to open up scoring opportunities. Sophomore Claire Baxter (CMC) led the team with three goals and nabbed two steals while junior Roxy Kiessling (CMC) had two goals with three steals. Emiko Mizusawa led the Panthers with four goals, but the rest of the team struggled to break past the CMS defense.
With the game tied at one apiece, Baxter swim past the defense and tucked the ball into the net to give CMS the lead. With 6:04 left in the first period, sophomore Tess van Hulsen (CMC) received an outlet pass and fired a shot past the keeper in a one-on-one situation to give the Athenas a 3-1 lead. The Panthers managed to tie the game at 4 apiece during the second period after back-to-back goals from Andi Sandoval, but van Hulsen scored to take back the lead. Baxter added one more goal after receiving a quick pass from junior Jessica Gaffney (CMC), but Mizusawa managed to sneak one shot in traffic with five seconds left to cut the deficit to one goal at the half.
Kiessling opened up the third period with a turnaround shot from the middle to extend the lead 7-5 with 7:21 left. The Panthers made some adjustments on the defensive end to create opportunities on the counterattack, but the Athenas recovered well and were able to force their opponents to tough shots and several missed passes. With 3:47 left in the third, the Athenas and Panthers exchanged goals, but it was the Kiessling who delivered the final blow with a goal in the final 15 seconds of the period to make it 10-7.
The Athenas never looked back and held it down on defense, denying the Panthers open chances at goal while Mastrodimos made several key saves to preserve the lead until the final whistle.
CMS will travel to Redlands on Saturday, April 8 to take on the Bulldogs at 11 a.m.
By Young Kim
Sports Information Assistant
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