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No. 10 Hounds Clinch Landmark Conference Tournament Berth with Sweep of Elizabethtown

Josie Novak '18 delivers a pitch to the plate in her one-hit shutout of Elizabethtown College at Blue & Grey Field.
Josie Novak '18 delivers a pitch to the plate in her one-hit shutout of Elizabethtown College at Blue & Grey Field.

BETHLEHEM, Pa. --- The No. 10 ranked Moravian College softball team swept Elizabethtown College, 7-0 and 4-1, in Landmark Conference action at Blue & Grey Field Thursday afternoon as the Greyhounds clinched a berth in the 2018 Landmark Conference Tournament with the two victories.

The Hounds improve to 19-3 overall and 8-0 in conference action and will be heading to the postseason for the 24th consecutive season under the direction of Head Coach John Byrne. Moravian has four conference contests left this spring as the squad looks to clinch the top seed in the Landmark Conference Tournament and host the two-day, double-elimination tournament if it becomes the number one seed.

Senior pitcher Josie Novak tossed a one-hit shutout in the first game Thursday against Elizabethtown with two walks and six strikeouts to improve to 9-2 on the spring. It was Novak's 28th career shutout and third of the season.

The Greyhounds had 13 hits in the opening contest with sophomore left fielder Lauren Goetz going 3-for-3 and junior center fielder Kat Spilman going 3-for-4 with two RBIs. Freshman right fielder Brooke Wehr went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBI doubles while freshman second baseman Shannon Brogan was 2-for-3.

The Blue and Grey jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Wehr was hit by a pitch to start the frame and would score on an RBI infield single by Spilman.

The Greyhounds added another run in the bottom of the fourth inning to take a 2-0 advantage. Freshman shortstop Maddisen Bieber doubled down the right field line with one out and moved to third on a single by Goetz. Wehr followed with an RBI double to right center off the outstretched glove of a running Blue Jay outfielder to score Bieber.

Moravian scored five times in the bottom of the sixth for a 7-0 lead. Goetz singled with one out and sophomore Emily Stanilious came on to pinch run. Wehr followed with her second RBI double of the game to right center as Stanilious beat the throw to the plate. Wehr eventually raced home on a wild pitch while junior pinch hitter Julia DeMarco drew a walk and scored on an RBI single by Spilman. After a single by Brogan, Shaneberger ripped a two-RBI single up the middle

The Greyhounds collected another nine hits in the second game with Brogan going 2-for-3 and Wehr posting a 2-for-4 game.

Senior pitcher Amanda Carisone allowed an unearned run on seven hits to go along with two strikeouts as she improved to 10-1 in the circle this spring.

The Blue and Grey would break onto the scoreboard in the bottom of the fourth inning with four runs. Senior catcher Janae Matos drew a walk before Spilman deposited a 2-1 pitch over the fence in left center for her fourth home run of the season and 16th of her career. Brogan and Shaneberger followed with singles before Bieber hit an RBI single to score Brogan. After a fielder's choice, Wehr ripped an RBI single to score Shaneberger with the final run of the inning.

The Blue Jays would score an unearned run in the top seventh to finish the game.

The Greyhounds are scheduled to return to action on Saturday, April 14 in a Landmark Conference doubleheader at Drew University with first pitch of the opener set for 1:00 p.m. in Madison, New Jersey.