Athenas Sweep Sagehens in Pitching-Dominated Weekend

The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women’s
softball team tacked two more wins onto their season after
sweeping Sixth Street rival Pomona-Pitzer in an
April 18 doubleheader. CMS (22-10, 16-8 SCIAC) won the opening game 2-1 with a walk-off single in
the bottom of the seventh and then closed the day by taking the second game 2-0.

P-P (14-22, 9-15, SCIAC) dropped down to 14-22
overall this season, but the Sagehens were satisfied with the fight they put up
last weekend.

“I
was proud of the way we played against CMS,” center fielder Leah Bleichner PO ’15
said. “Both games were competitive; we just never got the timely hit we needed
to win.”

P-P’s
timing might have been off, but outfielder Ashley Morello PZ ’15 swung hard at
the plate. Morello was four-for-five on the day, going two-for-three in the opening game
and two-for-two in the nightcap.

“Ashley
is reliable. She always performs when we need her,” Bleichner said. “This past
weekend was no different from any other weekend. If we needed a hit, Ashley got
it. She is an impressive player who works hard for her success.”

In
the first game, Morello led off the sixth inning with a single and came home on
a CMS error to tie the game 1-1. But Tara Robinson CM ’16 echoed Morello’s
single in the seventh, making it home on a shot up the middle from Alexa
Heydenberk CM ’17 and securing the Athena’s 2-1 win.

Despite being down the majority of
both games, the Sagehens kept their focus going into each new inning. Pitcher
Bianca Cockrell PO ’17 only let up five hits in the first game.

“The last
few weekends in particular, Bianca has been really good at staying calm in
low-scoring games,” Bleichner said. “Our offense was slumping, and Bianca
responded by holding the other teams to few, if any, runs.”

The Athenas came out strongly early in
the second game, scoring two runs in the bottom of the first to take the 2-0
lead. Neither team had a player cross home plate for the remainder the game,
despite the aggressive hitting of the Sagehens.

P-P mustered seven hits and walked
twice, but eight players were left on base with no one to bring them home.
Meanwhile, CMS maintained their two-point lead, maintaining the defensive
pressure with sharp, clean plays.

“Defensively, we were very solid with
very few errors,” pitcher Anna Gurr CM ’18 said. “Although we did not score as
many runs as we had previously in the last double-header against them, we were
constantly putting pressure on their defense by putting the ball in play with
runners on base.”

The
Sagehens will be taking the field again April 24 for the final game of their
regular season against Occidental College (8-26, 5-19 SCIAC) at 2 p.m.

“We
expect our last games to be the best ones all season,” Bleichner said. “Our
goal is to leave everything we have on the field while playing together for the
last time.”

CMS, which lies just behind Whittier College in the league standings, is determined to secure the championship.

“Being close to first in league
drives us to win these last four games to put the pressure on Whittier,” Gurr
said. “Our goal is to win SCIAC, so we must win from here on out.”

The
Athenas are also back at it April 24 at 2 p.m. when they take on Chapman University
(14-16, 11-13 SCIAC) in their second-to-last game of the regular season. 

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