The University of Scranton softball team has enjoyed a record-breaking season this spring and will look to continue an outstanding year at the Landmark Conference Championships to be played on Friday and Saturday at Moravian College in Bethlehem.
The Royals (31-9) have already set a new program record for wins in a season and are seeking their first-ever Landmark Conference title at this weekend's double-elimination tournament. Scranton last postseason conference title was a MAC championship in 1990.
The second-seeded Royals will take on third-seeded and defending Landmark Conference champion Susquehanna (26-14) on Friday at 1:00 p.m. in a first round matchup. The River Hawks also went 9-3 in Landmark Conference action this spring including a doubleheader split with Scranton on April 10 in Selinsgrove.
The Royals, who are making their sixth trip to the Landmark Conference playoffs including two in the past three seasons, are paced by four batters who are hitting about .300 this spring.
Freshman Jennifer Sweeney (Dumont, N.J./Dumont) is batting .410 with 50 hits including 10 home runs and nine doubles while totaling a team-best 34 RBI. Sophomore Megan Zinn (Bridgewater, N.J./Bridgewater-Raritan) is hitting .379 with seven doubles, one triples, and one home run, freshman Mackenzie Duffy (Wilkes-Barre, Pa./Lackawanna Trail) is batting at .359 clip with 11 doubles and four triples while scoring a team-best 33 runs while senior Morgan Rentzheimer (Allentown, Pa./Parkland) is batting .326 with 11 doubles and one home run.
Sweeney and Rentzheimer have provided outstanding pitching for the Royals throughout the season. Sweeney is 16-3 with a 1.84 ERA while holding opponents to a .207 batting average and striking out 89 batters.
Rentzheimer, who is Scranton's all-time pitching leader in wins, strikeouts, appearances, and starts, holds a 13-6 record to go along with a 2.76 ERA. The senior has struck out 100 batters in 119.1 innings of work and has limited opponents to a .257 batting average.
Senior Emilie Borman leads Susquehanna with a .400 batting average to go along with a team-leading 30 RBI. Classmate Heather Pearson is hitting .392 and has scored a team-best 34 runs while totaling 27 RBI.
Junior Alexa Gonzalez has started 20 games in the circle and has a 12-6 record with 48 strikeouts in 105.2 innings of work while holding a 3.38 ERA. Freshman Gabby Bubba has made 24 appearances including 19 in relief and has seven wins and four saves while leading River Hawk pitchers with a 2.10 ERA.
Top-seeded and 11th ranked Moravian (29-5, 11-1 Landmark) and #4 seed Catholic (18-14, 7-5 Landmark) will play in Friday's opening game at 11 a.m. The winners of Friday's first two games will play at 3:00 p.m. on Friday afternoon while Friday's first round losers will play in an elimination game on Saturday morning.
Another elimination game will be played at noon on Saturday followed by a championship game at 2:00 p.m. An "if necessary" winner-take-all championship game would follow on Saturday should the final two teams have only one loss following the 2 p.m. game.
Scranton went 3-3 against teams in this spring's postseason tournament, splitting doubleheaders at Susquehanna, Moravian, and Catholic in April.
Admission costs are $5 for adults, any non-Landmark Conference students and seniors are $3, and students from Landmark Conference insitutions and children under 10 are free.
For complete information about the 2018 Landmark Conference softball championships, click here.