Royal Review: December 30-January 6 (No. 17 in a weekly series)

Things are certainly looking up for veteran Royal head coach Carl Danzig.  Today, he announced the addition of three freshmen to his roster for the upcoming 2013-2014 season.
Things are certainly looking up for veteran Royal head coach Carl Danzig. Today, he announced the addition of three freshmen to his roster for the upcoming 2013-2014 season.

Men’s basketball (10-3, 2-1 Landmark)

The University of Scranton men’s basketball team returned from the holiday break and posted a trio of wins this past week.

The Royals rang in the New Year by posting a pair of victories in the Cross County Challenge for the second straight year. They opened play on Wednesday, Jan. 2, with an 81-66 victory over King’s College in a game at Wilkes University. Sophomore guard Ross Danzig (Clarks Green, Pa./Abington Heights/Blair Academy, N.J.) led four players in double figures with 16 points, freshman forward Brendan Boken (South Pasadena, Calif./Loyola) had 15 points and 10 rebounds, junior guard Tommy Morgan (Greenlawn, N.Y./Chaminade) had 14 points and senior guard Travis Farrell (Middletown, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy) added 13.

A night later, Danzig hit a deep 3-pointer at the buzzer to give Scranton a 71-68 victory over Wilkes. The game-winner came just four seconds after Wilkes had tied the game on a deep 3-pointer of its own. Boken led the Royals with 21 points and 13 rebounds, Danzig had 17 points and Morgan added 15. Danzig was named MVP while Farrell earned all-Cross County Challenge team honors.

On Saturday, Jan. 5, the Royals traveled to Huntingdon, Pa. and handed Juniata College a 62-54 defeat in a Landmark Conference game. Scranton got 11 points each from Danzig, Morgan and junior guard Michael Barr (North Wales, Pa./Lansdale Catholic) while winning at Juniata for the first time since 2009.

The Royals return to action on Wednesday, Jan. 9, when they travel to Kings Point, N.Y. to face Merchant Marine Academy in a Landmark Conference matchup.

Women’s basketball (10-4, 2-1 Landmark)

The University of Scranton women’s basketball team went 1-2 during the week, splitting a pair of games in Thousand Oaks, Calif. during the holidays before dropping a Landmark Conference game over the weekend.

The Lady Royals faced Cal-Lutheran on its home floor on Sunday, Dec. 30, and suffered a 44-42 loss. Scranton built a 17-point lead early in the second half, but could not hold on. Sophomore forward Meredith Mesaris (Fairfax, Va./Fairfax) had 12 points and sophomore guard Lindsay Fluehr (Bensalem, Pa./Nazareth Academy) had six points, 12 rebounds and five assists.

Less than 24 hours later, the Lady Royals rebounded to hand 17th-ranked Emmanuel (Mass.) a 50-46 defeat. Senior forward Tayler Pallotta (Dunmore, Pa./Dunmore) came off the bench to lead Scranton with 11 points, and senior forward Shernai Bentley (Warwick, N.Y./Warwick Valley) had four points, nine rebounds and seven steals.

Scranton resumed Landmark Conference play on Saturday, Jan. 5, and suffered a hard-fought 65-61 loss in overtime at Juniata. Mesaris led the way with 17 points, senior forward Erin Boggan (Danbury, Conn./Danbury) had 15 points and junior guard Alison Sweeney (Wall, N.J./St. Rose) added 10.

The Lady Royals are back in action on Saturday, Jan. 12, when they host Goucher College at 2 p.m. in the Long Center in a Landmark Conference game.

Women’s Swimming & Diving (7-2, 4-1 Landmark)

The University of Scranton women’s swimming & diving team returned to action for the first time in more than a month by posting a 182-109 victory at Merchant Marine Academy on Saturday, Jan. 5, in Kings Point, N.Y.

Junior Sara Franciscovich (Frederick, Md./Gov. Thomas Johnson) won two individual events and swam the first leg on two first-place finishing relay teams to lead the Royals. Franciscovich won the 50 free (:25.98) and 200 backstroke (2:17.60), and sophomore teammate Kaitlyn Maloney (Basking Ridge, N.J./Bridgewater-Raritan) captured first-place honors in the 500 free (5:36.91) and 1000 free (11:36.28).

Joining Franciscovich on the first-place finishing 200 medley relay, which covered the distance in 1:58.5, were senior Jenny Fitzmaurice (Milford, Conn./Academy of Our Lady of Mercy), junior Kelsy McAnelly (West Chester, Pa./Villa Maria Academy), and freshman Julia Murphy (West Chester, Pa./Villa Maria Academy). Junior Jessica Merino (North Hyde Park, N.Y./Sacred Heart Academy), freshman Megan Connor (Nesconset, N.Y./Smithtown East), and Murphy joined Franciscovich on the first-place finishing 400 freestyle relay, covering the distance in 3:55.01.

Murphy, senior Maggie Beyer (Highland Mills, N.Y./Monroe Woodbury) and sophomore Jean Park (North Brunswick, N.J./North Brunswick) won the 100 free (:59.31), 100 backstroke (1:05.92), and 200 free (2:06.42), respectively.

Scranton is back in the pool on Saturday, Jan. 12, when it hosts Landmark Conference foe Catholic at 1 p.m. in the Byron Center.

Men’s Swimming & Diving (6-2, 3-1 Landmark)

The University of Scranton men’s swimming & diving team took to the pool for the first time in more than a month and suffered a 176-117 loss to Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, N.Y.

Freshman Mitchell Colby (Bernardsville, N.J./Bernards) had three first-place finishes for the Royals, including a school-record 10:09.36 in the 1000 freestyle. He also won the 200 back (2:01.66), the 500 free (5:00.05).

The Royals also received a first-place finish in the 100 fly (:54.43) by senior Stephen Nicolosi (Clarks Green, Pa./Abington Heights) and in the 400 freestyle relay, as sophomores Derek Parrott (Milford, Conn./Milford) and Brendan McCrossan (Bernardsville, N.J./Bernards), freshman Grant Owens (Harrisburg, Pa./Central Dauphin), and sophomore Ryan Holmes (Clarks Green, Pa./Scranton Preparatory) covered the distance in 3:26.42.

Scranton will host Catholic on Saturday, Jan. 12, in a Landmark Conference meet at 1 p.m. in the Byron Center.

Wrestling (2-6)

The University of Scranton wrestling team traveled to New York University for a quad-meet on Saturday, Jan. 5. The Royals suffered a trio of hard-fought losses, falling to Hunter, 41-3; NYU, 40-4; and Southern Maine, 27-22.

Junior Chris Silakoski (Trenton, N.J./Notre Dame) posted a pair of wins on the day, both at 195 pounds. Against Hunter, he defeated Alan Djokic, 7-2, and he picked up a 5-3 win over Southern Maine’s Sean Fagan. Junior Ryan Giovanetti (Ridgewood, N.J./Ridgewood) earned the Royals’ only pin of the day, clamping Southern Maine’s Joseph Page at the 2:18 mark of the first period at 149.

Scranton returns to the mats on Tuesday, Jan. 15, when it travels to Wilkes-Barre to face King’s College at 7 p.m.

This Week in University of Scranton Athletics

Wednesday, January 9
Men’s basketball – at Merchant Marine Academy (7 p.m.)

Saturday, January 12
Men’s basketball – vs. Goucher (4 p.m.)
Women’s basketball – vs. Goucher (2 p.m.)
Men’s swimming & diving – vs. Catholic (1 p.m.)
Women’s swimming & diving – vs. Catholic (1 p.m.)