They say a team that sticks together wins
together, and for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women’s
soccer team, who played two games this week in honor of their eight seniors graduating after this season, unity was the key to success.
“We’ve been doing well during the season, and although
we’ve had a couple of bumps along the way, we came together today,” defender Gabby
Ozer CM ’15 said about their Saturday game. “We made the notion that we had to
push for each other and be there and be reliable for each other at all times.”
CMS (13-5-1, 10-3 SCIAC) celebrated Senior Day on Saturday, Oct. 25, in their second-to-last home match this season against the University of
Redlands (9-6-2, 6-5-2). In their last meeting, CMS lost 3-2 after two grueling
overtimes. But this time, they were able to regroup and get a couple more wins
under their wing before coming back prepared to avenge their loss and shut out
the Bulldogs 2-0.
“We did a better job organizing and defending
against them,” head coach Keri Sanchez said. “They’ve got some speed, and
they’re aggressive and a really good team, so we’re excited that we did well
As if shutting out their rivals wasn’t enough
to celebrate on this special day, it was only fitting that the two goals came
from two seniors. Just seven minutes into the first half, Sara Tweedy HM ’15
scored off of an assist by Ozer right past the goalie’s arms. This was her
second goal of the season and of her career.
“On senior day you want to make sure you keep
your emotions in check but use it to try and get a win,” Sanchez said. “It was
super exciting seeing two seniors putting the ball in the net.”
In the second half, after a shot by Katelyn
Faust CM ’17 ricocheted off the cross bar, Ozer took advantage of an
out-of-position keeper and drilled one into the corner, her first of the season
and second of her career.
“My back was to the goal, but I was like, I want
to shoot this,” Ozer said.
She was all smiles after the game and attributed the big win to the entire team for their commitment to come
together and ability to pump each other up in the locker
room before the game.
“We have more confidence in our passes and in
each other,” Ozer said. “Today we played more as a cohesive team and had more
passion. We want to be there for each other and win a championship.”
Goalie Molly Freed SC ’15 also did her part in the
win by saving eight shots on goal.
This win put CMS in a good position for
the SCIAC tournament, in which they are currently seeded at No. 1.
“If we can continue to win, we can control our
destiny in terms of winning a conference championship,” Sanchez said. “But we
have two tough games coming up in order to do that.”
The Athenas next played against Chapman University
(7-9-2, 3-8-2 SCIAC) on Wednesday, Oct. 29, and took care of business just as
Coach Sanchez had said, defeating them 2-0.
Halfway through the first half, Chapman unintentionally
scored a goal off of a pass by Darrah Shields CM ’16. In the
second half, Makella Brems CM ’17 got an easy goal past the keeper during a
penalty kick as a result of a Panther yellow card.
Brems, who leads the Athenas in goals this season
with seven total, was proud of her team for working more cohesively than they have been in
“I’m feeling really good about this game,”
Brems said. “Everyone put in 100 percent. You can tell we’re all playing with the same
goal in mind.”
Even though the Athenas were up 2-0, they
continued to play strong through the end of the game with reserves finishing
the game out. They saw many good opportunities to score, like Ozer’s shot with
under five minutes to go that barely hit the top of the cross bar, only a few inches away from making it in the goal.
This momentum continues to carry the Athenas to
the end of their season and will be much needed when they face Pomona-Pitzer (9-5-4,
7-2-4 SCIAC) for the last showdown before playoffs.
Brems says they will focus on pressure defense
and play “with heart, like we always do.”
In their last meeting, CMS defeated P-P 3-0,
but the rivalry can always bring something unexpected.
“We’re just stoked,” Brems said. “We’re ready
to take them. We want to keep this momentum going as long as we can.”
The Sagehen-Athena battle will take place Saturday, Nov. 1, at 11:00 a.m. at Pomona.