CMS Softball Ends 2019 Season With 5-2 Defeat to No. 5 Linfield on Saturday

CMS Softball Ends 2019 Season With 5-2 Defeat to No. 5 Linfield on Saturday

CLAREMONT, CA – The top-seeded Linfield Softball team scored three runs in the bottom of the third inning to take the lead and went on to capture a 5-2 win over Claremont-Mudd-Scripps on the second day of the NCAA Division III Softball Claremont (Calif.) Regional on Saturday at Athena Field.

With the win, the fifth-ranked Wildcats improve to 37-6-1 on the year and 2-0 at the regional leaving them one win shy of advancing to the Super Regionals, which they will try to accomplish later today against Whittier at 2:30 p.m. (a Whittier win would force a second game tomorrow). CMS sees its season end with a 31-13 record after falling to Whittier in its first game yesterday.

Junior shortstop Makenna Clizer was 2-for-2 with two RBI for Linfield, including an RBI single to cap off the three-run third. Senior right fielder Darian Stedman and freshman left fielder Katie Phillips were each 2-for-3.

Sophomore third baseman Maddie Valdez got the scoring started in the top of the first for CMS, belting her 12th home run of the season over the left field season, extending her own single-season program record. Freshman pitcher Lauren Richards retired the side in order in the first and left two on in the second with an infield pop-up before Linfield finally broke through in the third, manufacturing their rally with two outs and nobody on base.

Junior designated player Kelsey Wilkinson was hit by a pitch with two outs and stole second before Phillips drove her home with a double to straightaway center field. Stedman then lined a single into right-center to stretch the lead to 2-1, stole second and came home on an RBI single from Clizer to make it 3-1.

CMS got a run back in the top of the fourth, as freshman first baseman Ananya Koneti drew a walk and freshman pinch runner Natalie Dale stole second. Richards put down a sacrifice bunt and sophomore center fielder Kawai Scanlan hit a sacrifice fly to cut the lead to 3-2.

Linfield answered back in the bottom half when CMS had the potential third out caught in a rundown, but the Wildcats were able to score when the throw home got away for an error. Clizer then tacked on her second RBI of the day on an RBI single in the bottom of the fifth, the third of three straight singles after Phillips singled to center and Stedman singled through the left side.

Maddy Podnar threw the final three innings to get the save for Linfield, allowing just one hit, while Tanna Benson got the win to improve to 15-2 on the season. 

Valdez was chosen to the All-Tournament team for CMS, along with senior Rachel Perley, who hit .500 over the two games for the Athenas. Stedman was named the Claremont Regional Most Outstanding Player for Linfield.