No. 17 Hounds Split on Final Day of 2018 NFCA DIII Leadoff Classic

Amanda Carisone '18 delivers a pitch to the plate versus Coe (Iowa) College in the 2018 NFCA DIII Leadoff Classic in Tucson, Arizona.
Amanda Carisone '18 delivers a pitch to the plate versus Coe (Iowa) College in the 2018 NFCA DIII Leadoff Classic in Tucson, Arizona.

TUCSON, Ariz. --- The No. 17 Moravian College softball team completed its trip to the 2018 National Fastpitch Coaches Association Division III Leadoff Classic in Tucson, Arizona by splitting two games for the third straight day as the Hounds fell to the University of St. Thomas (Minn.), 4-3, in the first contest of the day before posting a 20-11 win over Coe (Iowa) College to finish off the tournament.

In the opening game Sunday, the Greyhounds had nine hits versus St. Thomas with junior second baseman Kaela Kane going 3-for-3 with an RBI. Senior Josie Novak took the loss in the circle after allowing four runs, two earned, on five hits and three walks to go with four strikeouts for the Hounds.

St. Thomas scored a single run in both the second and third innings to take a 2-0 lead. Moravian cut the deficit in half to 2-1 with a run in the home half of the fourth inning. Freshman third baseman Maddisen Bieber reached on a one-out single and moved into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt by sophomore center fielder Emily Stanilious. Kane connected on an RBI single to chase Bieber home.

The Tommies, who the Greyhounds were playing for the first time since falling to St. Thomas 2-0 in the 2004 NCAA Division III National Championship game, added a run in the top of the sixth to stretch their lead to 3-1.

The Hounds answered with two runs in the bottom of the frame to knot the score at 3-3. Freshman pinch hitter Shannon Brogan connected on a one-out single, and freshman right fielder Brooke Wehr followed with a single. Stanilious reentered the game for Brogan before Kane put down a sacrifice bunt. Senior catcher Janae Matos followed with a two-RBI single as Stanilious and Wehr scored.

St. Thomas pushed the winning run home in the top of the seventh inning for the 4-3 final.

Moravian would pound out 17 hits in the win over Coe with junior third baseman Madison Shaneberger and senior first baseman Jean Markovic each going 3-for-5 with two RBIs as Shaneberger added two doubles and scored three times while Markovic crossed the plate twice. Wehr, who was Moravian's selection to the All-Tournament Team after hitting .435 for the tournament, was 3-for-6 with five RBIs, three runs scored and her team-leading fourth home run of the season. Brogan had a 2-for-5 game with three runs, three RBIs and a pair of doubles while Bieber was 2-for-5 with two runs and an RBI. Moravian's 20 runs, 20 RBIs and 43 at-bats all set school records for a single game.

Senior Amanda Carisone improved to 2-1 in the circle as she allowed 10 runs, seven earned, on 12 hits to go with four strikeouts while Novak tossed 1.2 innings with a run on two hits to go along with two strikeouts.

The Greyhounds jumped out to an 8-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Wehr led off with a single and Bieber reached on a fielder's choice. Matos would reach on an error as Wehr raced home before junior left fielder Kat Spilman drew a walk to load the bases. Brogan followed with a two-RBI double as Bieber and Matos crossed the plate. After two outs, sophomore second baseman Lauren Goetz drew a walk to load the bases again. Junior center fielder Ashley Gindle connected on a two-RBI double as Brogan and Spilman scored, and Goetz and Gindle would cross the plate on a two-RBI single by Wehr. Matos finished off the scoring with an RBI single to plate Wehr.

The Hounds added two more tallies in the top half of the second to stretch the advantage to 10-0. Brogan led off the frame with a double and Shaneberger followed with an RBI double. Later in the inning, Goetz had an RBI fielder's choice as Shaneberger raced home from third.

The Blue and Grey pushed the edge to 11-0 with a run in the top of the third when Bieber led off with a single and scored on an error on a ball hit by Brogan.

Coe would get onto the scoreboard with a run in the bottom of the fourth to cut Moravian's lead to 11-1, and the Kohawks added four runs in the fifth to make it an 11-5 contest.

The Greyhounds scored three times in the top of the sixth to stretch the advantage to 14-5. Shaneberger led off with a double and scored on an RBI single from Markovic. Goetz, who finished the game with three runs and three RBIs, would reach on an error, and an error on a ball hit by Wehr allowed Markovic to scored. The Hounds' final run came when Bieber grounded into a fielder's choice as Goetz raced home.

Coe would answer with six runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to pull within 14-11.

The Hounds tacked on six runs in the top of the seventh to stretch the lead to 20-11. Spilman led off with a double, and after Brogan reached on an error, Shaneberger ripped an RBI single to bring Spilman across the plate. Markovic followed with an RBI single that brought Brogan into score, and Goetz connected on a two-RBI double as Shaneberger and Markovic scored. Wehr hit a two-run home run to score Goetz, and it was Wehr's fourth homer of the season.

Moravian will have a day off before beginning play in the Tucson Invitational on Tuesday, March 6 with games versus Husson (Maine) University at 11:00 a.m. and Bethany Lutheran (Minn.) College at 1:00 p.m. EST.