Men's Soccer (14-3-1 Landmark)
It was déjà vu for the University of Scranton men's soccer team this past week, as the Royals captured their second straight Landmark Conference Championship with victories over Drew (2-1) on Wednesday night and Elizabethtown (1-0) on Saturday evening to take the crown.
With the win at Elizabethtown, Scranton locked up a bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament, which will begin on Saturday at a site to be determined. It will mark the 16th appearance for the Royals program on the national stage, as well.
Against Drew, senior Pat Codispoti (Rockville Centre, N.Y./Chaminade) snapped a 1-1 tie early in the second half after firing a free kick into the back of the net, as the Royals defense hung tight over the final 25 minutes of play to give Scranton a 2-1 victory in the Landmark Semifinals on Wednesday night.
The first goal of the contest against Drew was tallied by junior Connor Casey (Hatfield, Pa./LaSalle College H.S.) in the first half, but Casey proved to be the hero in the Landmark Conference title match at Elizabethtown on Saturday night, as his early first half goal was the difference in a one-score victory.
Senior's Michael Bergen (Newtown, Pa./The Pennington School) and Tim DiBisceglie (Mine Hill, N.J./Gill St. Benard's School) were credited with assists on Casey's eventual game-winner, as the junior was named the Most Valuable Player of the Landmark Conference Tournament for his performance this past week.
After Casey scored the goal early in the contest, the Royal defense shutout Elizabethtown for the next 80 minutes, notching their ninth shutout victory of the season in the process. Senior goalie Eric Hintz (South Windsor, Conn./South Windsor) also had a strong match in net for Scranton, stopping five shots to record the fifth shutout win of his season, as well.
Scranton now awaits on who and where they will play in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament, which will begin on Saturday. Pairings will be announced on Monday afternoon.
Women's Soccer (17-1-1 Landmark)
The women's soccer team set its sights on the 2016 Landmark Conference championship nearly 12 months ago after losing in the 2015 title match. On Saturday, the Royals completed that goal in successful fashion.
Scranton claimed its fifth Landmark Conference title and 21st conference title overall by defeating Moravian, 2-0, in the Landmark Conference championship on Saturday, Nov. 5, at Fitzpatrick Field. Junior midfielder Hanna Demars (Cranford, N.J./Cranford) was named championship MVP after her goal in the fifth minute put Scranton ahead. Sophomore forward Jamie Hreniuk (West Caldwell, N.J./James Caldwell) scored less than four minutes later and the defense did the rest as Scranton won its 15th straight game.
The Royals reached the title match by knocking off Susquehanna, 1-0 in overtime, in a semifinal on Tuesday, Nov. 1, at Fitzpatrick Field. Hreniuk scored midway through overtime to send the Royals to the title match.
With the championship comes an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament, where the Royals will be making their 16th appearance in the first round on Saturday. The opponent, site and time of the first-round match are to be announced.
Men's Swimming (3-1)
The University of Scranton men's swimming & diving teams notched their first home victory of the 2016-17 season on Saturday afternoon, as the Royals bested Goucher by a score of 150-55.
Things got off to a fast start for Scranton in the 400-medley relay, as Scranton's "A" team rolled to a win, hitting the wall in 3:49.88 to win the event by almost six seconds.
Individual events then got underway and sophomore Daniel Muenkel (Hopewell Junction, N.Y./Arlington Senior) captured the longest event of the day, the 1000-freestyle, in 11:02.90. Muenkel then went on to win the 500-freestyle later in the event, taking it in 5:16.12.
In the 200-freestyle, sophomore Robert Kahrs (East Windsor, N.J./Notre Dame) was victorious in a time of 1:57.84, as Kahrs then went on to later win the 100-butterfly in 54.80.
Freshman Raymond Diorio (Warren, N.J./Watchung Hills) was the winner in the 200-IM in 2:08.84, while fellow freshman Alexander Rigione (Fairfield, Conn./Saint Joseph) was the victor in the 100-freestyle after hitting the wall in 51.30.
The final two individual winners on the day were sophomore Michael Ramsthaler (Florham Park, N.J./Seton Hall Prep) who took the 100-backstroke in a time of 56.36, while fellow freshman Gregory Spicka (Morris Plains, N.J./Seton Hall Prep)dominated in the 100-breaststroke, winning the final individual event of the afternoon in 1:05.14.
In the last event of the afternoon, Scranton completed the sweep with a win in the 400-freestyle relay, as the Royals "A" team took it, 3:30.41.
The University of Scranton men's swimming & diving team returns to action next Saturday, as they host Dickinson inside the Byron Center beginning at 1 p.m.
Women's Swimming & Diving (5-0)
The University of Scranton women's swimming & diving team knocked off both Juniata (150-52) and Goucher (140.5-63.5) on Saturday to remain unbeaten on the short season.
In the meet, Scranton got action started in dominating fashion, as the Royals "A" team won the 400-medley relay by almost 15 seconds, hitting the wall in 4:16.06.
In the individual events, the Royals captured their first win of the day in the 1000-freestyle, as sophomore Emma Ilseman (Naperville, Ill./Naperville Central) hit the wall in 11:42.,98. Emma's twin sister Susannah Ilseman (Naperville, Ill./Naperville Central) also won an event on the day, taking the 100-freestyle in 57.45.
Next in the 200-freestyle, junior Raquel Wasserman (Pound Ridge, N.Y./The Fox Lane) won another event in a meet, taking the 200-freestyle in a time of 2:04.92. Senior Emma Sommers (Bridgewater, N.J./Bridgewater-Ratrian) then grabbed the 50-freestyle, hitting the wall in 25.75.
In the 200-IM, sophomore Claire Mason (Livingston, N.J./Mt. St. Dominic Academy) was the winner in 2:23.83, as Mason then went on to take the 500-freestyle with a time of 5:41.52.
In the final individual event of the afternoon, freshman Jenna Harper (Easton, Pa./Easton) was victorious, hitting the wall in 1:12.87. The final event of the day was the 400-freestyle relay, and Scranton ended the day strong, winning the event in 3:53.54.
The University of Scranton women's swimming & diving team returns to action next Saturday, as they host Dickinson inside the Byron Center beginning at 1 p.m.
Women's Volleyball (22-16)
The University of Scranton volleyball team completed their 2016 season this past week, as the Royals dropped a three-set decision to top-seeded (and eventual Landmark Conference Champion) Juniata on Wednesday (19-25, 21-25, 19-25).
Despite suffering the loss on Wednesday, the Royals still posted a great season in 2016. The 22 wins marked the third straight season of 20 or more wins for Scranton and fourth out of the last five. The 2016 season also marked the seventh straight season and ninth out of 10 that Scranton has advanced to the Landmark Conference playoffs.
Individually, Sophomore outside hitter Kristin Kirwan (Park Ridge, N.J./Immaculate Heart Academy) finished the Juniata match with eight kills, four digs and three total blocks to lead Scranton. She finished the season with 559 kills, which is both a school single-season record and a Landmark Conference single-season record.
Senior setter Brittany Cafiero (Merrick, N.Y./Kellenberg Memorial) finished her final career match with 23 assists and six digs. She finishes her career with 3,177 assists, which ranks fourth in school history. Her 1,082 assists this season are seventh-most in a single season in school history.
The wrestling team opened its 2015-16 season by finishing sixth at the Monarch Invitational at King's College on Saturday, Nov. 5. The Royals' sixth-place finish was their best since they began competing in the Monarch Invitational in the 2004-05 season.
Five wrestlers placed in the top-five of their weight classes to lead Scranton. They were:
- Senior Ian Evans (Laurys Station, Pa./Parkland), who was third at 157 pounds;
- Sophomore Daniel D'Agostini (Allentown, Pa./Allentown Central Catholic), who was third at 184;
- Freshman Keegan Connelly (Schnecksville, Pa./Allentown Central Catholic), who was fourth at 197 pounds;
- Junior Nicholas DePierro (Manalapan, N.J./Freehold Township), who was fifth at 125, and;
- Freshman Nicholas Ciaccia (Freehold, N.J./Howell), who was fifth at 133.
The wrestling team is back in action on Thursday, Nov. 10, when the Royals travel to LaPlume, Pa. to take on Keystone College at 7:30 p.m.
This Week in University of Scranton Athletics
Thursday, Nov. 10
Wrestling – at Keystone (7:30 p.m.)
Saturday, Nov. 12
Men's cross country – NCAA Mideast Regional
Women's cross country – NCAA Mideast Regional
Wrestling – Electric City Duals (10 a.m.)