WASHINGTON, D.C. --- The third seeded Moravian College baseball team defeated fourth seed The University of Scranton, 8-1, in the winner's bracket game of the 2013 Landmark Conference Tournament being hosted by The Catholic University of America Sunday to move the Greyhounds into the championship round for the second straight season and third time in four years.
Moravian, which won the 2010 Landmark Conference title, will play Scranton again in the championship round on Monday, May 6th starting at 11:00 a.m. after the Royals eliminated host and top seed Catholic, 6-5 in 11 innings later Sunday. The Greyhounds will only need to win once to advance to the NCAA Division III Tournament for the second time in four years beginning on May 15th while Scranton will have to win twice.
Scranton jumped out to a quick 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning when sophomore outfielder Michael Umerich started off the game with a double and scored on an RBI ground out by senior outfielder Michael Gaeta.
The Greyhounds answered in the bottom half of the first with a pair of runs to take a 2-1 lead. Freshman outfielder Jimmy McCarthy led off with a walk, and sophomore shortstop Colin Case had a bunt single. Sophomore outfielder Matt Hanson reached on an error to load the bases for freshman first baseman Charles Savite. Savite reached on an RBI fielder's choice that scored McCarthy, and an error by Scranton on the play allowed Case to cross the plate as well to move the Greyhounds in front.
Moravian extended its lead to 3-1 with a run in the bottom of the second. Sophomore third baseman Ryan Luke led off the inning with a walk, and he crossed the plate when McCarthy reached on an error with two outs.
The Greyhounds scored two more runs in the bottom of the third inning to push the lead to 5-1. Hanson started the inning with a single, and he scored on Scranton's second error of the inning on an RBI fielder's choice by Luke. Sophomore designated hitter Joey DiSarno followed with an RBI infield single that scored Connell, who had reached on an error after Hanson's hit.
Moravian pushed the lead to 6-1 with a run in the fourth when Hanson led off with a single and scored on an RBI fielder's choice by Savite that included Scranton's sixth error of the game.
The Greyhounds tacked on two more runs in the bottom of the sixth for an 8-1 advantage. Hanson reached on an error by the Royals and would cross the plate on an RBI single by junior outfielder Joseph Connell. Luke followed with an RBI single that scored Savite, who had walked after Hanson reached base.
Moravian finished the game with a 9-7 edge in hits with DiSarno going two-for-three and Luke going two-for-four for the Greyhounds. Sophomore first baseman Ross Danzig was two-for-three to lead the Royals.
Freshman Anthony Zaloga started on the mound for the Greyhounds and improved to 4-4 on the season with his third complete game of the year. Zaloga allowed just a run on seven hits and two walks to go with six strikeouts.
Senior Corey Gorman was the Royals' starter, and he dropped to 3-4 on the year after allowing eight runs, just one earned, on six hits and three walks to go with two strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings of action. Sophomore Stephen Hart pitched the final 2 1/3 innings with three hits and two strikeouts.
Moravian needs to win just once on Monday while Scranton will need to defeat the Greyhounds twice.