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Maya Loper threw four innings of relief to get the win.
Maya Loper threw four innings of relief to get the win.

CMS Softball Has Late Comeback to Split with No. 12 Linfield

CLAREMONT, Calif. - Trailing 5-0 in the nightcap, the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps softball team scored twice in the fifth and six times in the sixth to come from behind and take an 8-6 win over No. 12 Linfield on Sunday at Athena Field.

With the split, CMS moves to 5-1 on the year and picks up a key regional win by coming back in the nightcap after being no-hit through the first 4.1 innings. Linfield, which won the opener 8-4, now stands at 4-2 with the split. 

Maya Loper threw 4.0 innings of relief to get the win, finishing off with her twin sister Sarah Loper behind the plate, after Sarah pinch-hit to lead off the six-run rally in the seventh. Loper nearly had four shutout innings, but Linfield was able to string together three singles in the seventh to score a run and bring the go-ahead run to the plate, but Loper was able to end it with a routine pop-up to short. 

CMS began its comeback in the fifth when Paige Zimmerman broke up the no-hitter with an RBI single with one out in the first. Zimmerman was 2-for-3 with three RBI in the nightcap, after tallying an inside-the-park homer in defeat in the opener, when her line drive down the right field line eluded the dive of Baily Paul. Zimmerman then came home on a successful squeeze bunt from Ellie Novogradac to close the deficit to 5-2. 

After Loper left a runner stranded on second after a two-out double, CMS flipped the script with a big six-run inning. Sarah Loper led off with a single to center, and went to second on a single from Abby Thompson. Madison Gonzalez then had an RBI single to close the gap to 5-3. An error loaded the bases, and Zimmerman tied the score with a two-run single up the middle, leaving two runners on and still nobody out. 

Jacqueline Solomon put down a successful sacrifice bunt to move the runners over, but the ball was mishandled by the Wildcats, re-loading the bases for the Athenas. Novogradac then put down her second squeeze bunt of the day, which was perfectly placed down the third-base line for a single, giving the Athenas the lead. Sophia Nguyen then had an RBI groundout and Emma Suh hit a sacrifice fly to close out the CMS scoring. 

In the opening game, Ari Livi was 2-for-3, Suh and Destiny Garcia each were 2-for-4, and Abby Thompson had two RBI, but Linfield was able to jump out to a 4-1 lead and hold off the Athenas. Hannah Adams allowed one earned run in two innings of relief, and Alexis Gero threw a shutout inning in the seventh. 

CMS will be back in action on Friday when it hosts St. Katherine and William Jessup at Athena Field.