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Elise Power put CMS ahead to stay with a buzzer beater to end the first (photo by Caelyn Smith)
Elise Power put CMS ahead to stay with a buzzer beater to end the first (photo by Caelyn Smith)

CMS Women's Water Polo Wins Fourth Straight, Takes Road Win at Chapman 11-7

ORANGE, Calif. – The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women's water polo team never trailed, but fought off several challenges from Chapman before taking an 11-7 win on Wednesday evening at the Allred Aquatics Center.

Christina Kulick led the way with three goals for the Athenas, Cooper McKenna had two, and six other players had one, as CMS rode a balanced offense to the win. CMS improves to 10-5 on the season and 6-1 in the SCIAC, while stretching its winning streak to four games and moving alone into second place in the league by a half-game ahead of idle Cal Lutheran (5-1).

CMS took a while to break a scoreless tie, but finally found the net at the 1:59 mark of the first quarter, when Courtney Coleman opened the scoring. Elise Power then broke a 1-1 tie with a goal with just one second left to give CMS a 2-1 lead heading into the second quarter.

Emily McElroy and Kulick scored two straight goals in the second quarter to stretch the CMS lead to 4-1. Chapman responded with two straight goals to get back within one, but Emma Brezoczky scored on a 6-on-5 with 32 seconds left in the half to give the Athenas a 5-3 lead going into the break.

Chapman scored the first goal of the second half to make it a one-goal game again, but Kulick started a 3-0 run with her second goal of the game, which was followed by goals from Mia Adsen and Cooper McKenna to make it an 8-4 lead. The Panthers again scored two straight goals, but Dara Schoolcraft became the eighth different goal-scorer for the Athenas when she converted on a 6-on-5 to push the lead to 9-6 with 1:49 left in the third.

After the Panthers scored just before the end of the third quarter, Kulick started off the fourth with a goal on the first CMS possession to complete the hat trick. McKenna added her second with 1:27 left to close out the scoring, as the Athenas shut out Chapman in the fourth quarter behind goalie Ruth Efe (three second half saves), who came on in relief of Jessica Salaz, who had three saves in the first half.

CMS will be back in action on Saturday when it hosts two home games at Axelrood Pool, playing another SCIAC contest against Redlands at 11 a.m. and then stepping out of conference to meet CSU Northridge at 2 p.m.