MADISON, N.J. --- The Moravian College baseball team posted an 8-5 win at Drew University in the final game of the 2013 Landmark Conference season Sunday to clinch a berth in the Landmark Conference Tournament for the fifth straight season.
The Greyhounds will be the third seed in the four-team tournament being hosted by The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. Moravian will face second seed The United States Merchant Marine Academy in the opening round on Saturday, May 4th at 2:30 p.m. Catholic and fourth seed The University of Scranton will play the opening game on Saturday.
Moravian, which has now won at least 20 games for the fifth consecutive season, jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Sophomore shortstop Colin Case reached on a fielder's choice before sophomore outfielder Matt Hanson was hit by a pitch. After freshman first baseman Charles Savite reached on an error, junior outfielder Joseph Connell had an RBI fielder's choice to score Case. Sophomore third baseman Ryan Luke followed with a two-RBI double to score Hanson and Savite.
The Greyhounds pushed their lead to 4-0 with a run in the top of the second. Freshman catcher Mike Roethke started the inning with a single and scored on an RBI single by Case.
Moravian made the advantage 5-0 with another run in the top of the third inning. Savite led off with a single, and he crossed the plate on an RBI sacrifice fly by sophomore designated hitter Justin Pilchman.
The Rangers would answer with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the third on an RBI single by senior outfielder Michael Bodden and an RBI ground out from junior designated hitter Mark Alessio to cut the Moravian lead to 5-2.
The Greyhounds scored three more times in the top of the fourth to push their advantage to six runs at 8-2. Freshman second baseman Alex Bull led off with a single and Case singled with one out. After another out, Savite connected on an RBI double to score Bull. Connell followed with a two-RBI double to score Case and Savite.
Drew would be the next team to score with a pair of runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to cut Moravian's lead to 8-4 on a two-RBI single by freshman third baseman Matt Klinger.
The Rangers would get a run in the bottom of the ninth when senior first baseman Justin Mancini was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded before the Greyhounds ended the game.
Moravian had a 14-13 edge in hits in the game with Luke going three-for-four. Pilchman was two-for-three for the Greyhounds while Case, Savite and Connell were each two-for-five. Bodden was three-for-four to lead Drew at the plate while junior catcher Matthew Kaplon and freshman second baseman Anthony Feltre each had two hits.
Greyhound freshman Brett Wagner improved to 2-1 on the mound this season, allowing four runs on seven hits and a walk to go with one strikeout in six-plus innings of action. Wagner entered the game after one batter in the second inning when junior starter Thomas Mariano was hit by a ball right back up the middle and forced out of the game. Mariano had allowed just one hit. Junior Ben Hammel tossed the final two innings for Moravian, giving up a run on five hits and a walk to go with one strikeout.
Junior Ken Myers was the first of three pitchers for the Rangers, allowing six runs, three earned, on six hits in three-plus innings of action.
The Greyhounds will close out their 2013 regular season on Tuesday, April 30th when Moravian hosts DeSales University in a non-conference game at Gillespie Field beginning at 4:00 p.m.