Athenas catch Tigers by toe in road victory

Kelly McConnell
Kelly McConnell

Los Angeles, Calif. – The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women's soccer team finally earned their first victory on the road after escaping with a narrow 1-0 victory over Occidental College (4-3-0, 1-3-0). The Athenas (4-4-0, 2-1-0) were in control of the match and outshot the Tigers 16 to 4, but were frustrated with their finish. It wasn't until the 77th minute when junior Ellen Berkley (CMC) managed to score the game-winning goal with a well-placed header, her second of the season. On the other side of the ball, the defense played spectacularly, limiting the Tigers to only one shot in the second half, to help senior Kelly McConnell (HMC) earn her fourth shutout of the season.

"They worked really hard. The team came out of the gate in rhythm and we were able to create our chances," said head coach Keri Sanchez. "The girls were very excited after the victory. The senior class never won at Oxy, and to be able to go there and leave with a win means a lot to them."

The first half was a back and forth affair, with both teams finding several good looks at goal. Despite facing heavy pressure from the Athenas offense, Tigers goalie Dallas Gunny held it down between the posts, managing to save all six shots that went in her direction. Junior Jacey Coniff (HMC) put in a solid shift on the defensive end, making timely tackles and breaking up any build up from the Tigers' offense.

The Athenas looked more in control in the second half as the defense tightened up and gave the offense more room to operate up top. However, the Tigers' backup goalie Sydney Tomlinson managed to keep her team in the game with three key saves to maintain the 0-0 tie. In the 77th minute, CMS finally got on board after being awarded a corner kick. Senior Laynee Laube (CMC) delivered the ball to the near post towards sophomore Maddie Peterson (SC), who then flicked the ball back with her head to Berkley who was standing in the back post. Berkley leapt and knocked a header into the open net to break the deadlock.  

"This conference is hard and every team has some very talented players," Sanchez added. "In spite of how our season started, I know that you're only as good as the last game."  

The CMS women's soccer team will return home on Saturday evening to host University of La Verne (2-5-0, 1-2-0) at 5 p.m. La Verne won 2-1 in their last meeting in Sept. 23, 2015.

By Young Kim
Sports Information Assistant

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