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Grace Clark had four goals for the Athenas (photo by Caelyn Smith)
Grace Clark had four goals for the Athenas (photo by Caelyn Smith)

CMS Women's Water Polo Uses Late Surge for 9-6 Win over Cal Lutheran in SCIAC Semifinals

CLAREMONT, Calif. - The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women's water polo team was knotted 5-5 with Cal Lutheran in the final minute of the third quarter, and scored four straight goals to earn a 9-6 win over the Regals in the SCIAC Semifinals on Friday at Axelrood Pool.

With the win, CMS improves to 18-9 on the season and moves on to face Pomona-Pitzer in the SCIAC Championship on Sunday at 11 a.m.

Grace Clark, who was named the SCIAC Newcomer of the Year earlier this week, led the Athenas with four goals, scoring the final goal of the first half to tie the score 3-3, and the first goal of the second half to give the Athenas a 4-3 lead. She then had her fourth with 2:18 left in the third to give CMS a 5-4 lead, which was answered back just over a minute later by the Regals. 

Isabel Del Villar, though, gave the Athenas the lead for good with 48 seconds left in the third, and CMS took that momentum into the fourth. Mia Adsen scored a 6-on-5 goal, with Cal Lutheran goalie Izzy De Souza the one forced to the penalty area, and Elise Power followed with a goal with 4:17 left. Christina Kulick then capped off the 4-0 run with 3:48 to play, and Natalie Stearns made two of her five saves down the stretch to help CMS hold on to the three-goal win. 

Mason Spencer started the game in goal and had seven saves in the first half, while Stearns allowed just one goal in the second half. Mia Adsen led the Athenas with three steals. 

CMS takes on Pomona-Pitzer on Sunday at 11 a.m. after the Sagehens handed the Athenas their only league loss, 13-10 back on April 5. CMS ended the year 11-1 in conference, its best SCIAC record in program history, while Pomona-Pitzer went undefeated in league play for the second year in a row.