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Big Second Quarter Lifts Hounds to Win over Susquehanna, Clinching Landmark Tournament Berth

Moravian College honored women's basketball seniors Ariana Caiati, Caitlin Flanagan, Tyis Mullen and Emily Walls before the Greyhounds' game versus Susquehanna University in Johnston Hall.
Moravian College honored women's basketball seniors Ariana Caiati, Caitlin Flanagan, Tyis Mullen and Emily Walls before the Greyhounds' game versus Susquehanna University in Johnston Hall.

BETHLEHEM, Pa. --- The Moravian College women's basketball team broke a 13-13 tie after 10 minutes of action with a 19-7 run on the second quarter as the Greyhounds posted a 64-46 over Susquehanna University in Landmark Conference action in Johnston Hall Wednesday evening on Senior Night and clinched a berth in the upcoming Landmark Conference Tournament.

The Greyhounds improve to 16-8 overall and 8-5 in Landmark Conference play with the victory and moves into sole possession of third place in the conference standings with one game remaining. The Hounds will be on the road for the Landmark Conference Semifinals on Wednesday, February 20 with seeding to be determined after Saturday's regular season finale.

Moravian had a pair of players in double figures led by junior guard Maddie Capuano, who netted 21 points to go with seven rebounds, four assists and three steals. Junior forward Nadine Ewald contributed 13 points, nine rebounds and three assists while senior guard Emily Walls had nine points, five boards and three steals.

Junior guard Karlie Brogan tossed in six points to go along with five rebounds, five steals and a pair of assists while senior forward Ariana Caiati had four points, five boards and three steals. Junior guard Brooke Santy also scored four points while senior guards Tyis Mullen and Caitlin Flanagan each had two points with Mullen adding three steals and a pair of assists. Freshman guard Kayla Yoegel contributed two points while sophomore guard Sarah Donati had one point.

"Ariana adds high energy and focus to our program. Her work ethic in the classroom and on the court are second to none," Head Coach Mary Beth Spirk started when talking about her seniors Caiati, Flanagan, Mullen and Walls in their final home game. "Caitlin's growth as a player and person over the course of four years has been amazing. We are happy she decided to finish her career with us. Ty's passion and positive vibe as a person will be missed. Ty has developed into a leader on and off the court. This mindset will garner her much success in her future. Emily's determination to succeed is remarkable. She was determined to make her mark on the team, and she did in such a positive way. This drive will carry her far in life."

Moravian connected on 24-of-70 field goal attempts in the game along with 4-of-14 three-pointers and 12-of-19 free throws. The Blue and Grey had a 14-8 advantage on the offensive boards while the River Hawks had a 42-41 edge in overall rebounds. The Greyhounds also forced Susquehanna into 27 turnovers while only committing 10 miscues.

Capuano opened the scoring and a fast break lay-up from Walls had the Hounds up 4-0. The lead reached seven points, 9-2, after a free throw from Ewald but a 7-0 run from the River Hawks tied the contest at 9-9. Susquehanna would beat the buzzer to end the first quarter as the teams were tied at 13-13 after 10 minutes of action.

Caiati hit a jumper to start the second quarter and put Moravian back in front before the River Hawks took a one-point lead, 16-15, on a pair of free throws at the 8:33 mark. Susquehanna led 18-17 before a three-pointer from Walls put the Hounds in the lead for good with 5:35 left in the first half, and a 10-0 run to finish the period sent the Greyhounds to the locker room with a 32-20 lead after two late free throws by Capuano.

The Blue and Grey would extend the run to 24 straight points with a 14-0 start to the second half. Capuano connected on a three-pointer to get things going, and a four-point play by Capuano at the 5:34 mark had the Hounds leading 46-20. The advantage reached a game-high 28 points, 50-22, after a lay-up from Caiati, and Moravian was up 52-30 after 30 minutes of action. Moravian would keep its lead over 18 points throughout the fourth quarter.

The Greyhounds will close out the 2018-19 regular season on Saturday, February 16 with a Landmark Conference game at Elizabethtown College beginning at 2:00 p.m. A win will lock Moravian into the third seed and a return trip to Elizabethtown for the Landmark Conference Semifinals on February 20 while a loss would either drop the Greyhounds to the four seed and a semifinal game at The University of Scranton or the Hounds could remain the three seed depending on the outcome of the The Catholic University of America at Drew University contest on Saturday.