The University of Scranton women's lacrosse team opens the 2018 Landmark Conference playoffs on Wednesday night, hosting Moravian in a semifinal matchup starting at 7:00 p.m. at Fitzpatrick Field. The Royals are looking for the first Landmark Conference title in program history after appearing in the championship game in both of the past two seasons.
The Royals are the #2 seed in this spring's postseason tournament after going 11-6 during the regular season including a 6-1 record in Landmark Conference games which set a new program record for Landmark Conference wins in a season. Scranton, who has qualified for the Landmark Conference playoffs eight years in a row, enters Wednesday's semifinal contest riding a five-game win streak.
Scranton features a balanced attack that has seen 11 players record 10 or more points this spring. Junior Elena Gallo (East Meadow, N.Y./Kellenberg Memorial) leads the team with 62 points on 54 goals and eight assists, freshman Jill Henson (Baldwinsville, N.Y./Christian Brothers Academy) has 50 points on 34 goals and 16 helpers, while sophomore Kate Calabro (Seaford, N.Y./Kellenberg Memorial) has totaled 49 points on 22 goals and a team-leading 27 assists.
Calabro also leads the team with 101 draw controls and is tied with sophomore Becca Russo (South Windsor, Conn./South Windsor) for the team-lead in caused turnovers with 28. Russo paces Scranton with 44 ground balls while sophomore Erin Putnam (Doylestown, Pa./Central Bucks South) has made a team-leading 109 saves while holding a 10.90 goals against average and a .454 save percentage.
Moravian is making its first-ever appearance in the Landmark Conference playoffs, earning the #3 seed after going 11-4 during the regular season and 5-2 in league play. The Greyhounds established a new program record for wins in a season this spring, reaching double-digit victories for the first time in the program's young history.
Sophomore Liz Bill leads Moravian in scoring with 88 points on 70 goals and 18 assists while junior Jillian Picciuto has amassed 80 points on 48 goals and 32 helpers.
Freshman Meaghan McMullan paces the Greyhounds with 93 draw controls and 29 caused turnovers while sophomore Allie Fisher has picked up a team-best 42 ground balls. Junior Kelley Gavin has seen the majority of time in Moravian's net, making 90 saves to sport a 10.56 goals against average and a .425 save percentage.
Scranton won the regular season meeting against Moravian, 18-9, on April 7 in Bethlehem. The Royals held an 11-7 lead early in the second half before scoring six straight goals to take control of the contest midway through the second half.
Junior Christine Olert (Katonah, N.Y./Somers) scored a career-high six goals while Gallo recorded five points including the 100th of her career to lead Scranton's attack. Calabro contributed six ground balls, six draw controls, and four caused turnovers while Putnam made 11 saves in the win.
Bill scored a team-high five goals for Moravian while Picciuto netted a hat trick as the duo combined for eight of the team's nine goals. Gavin made a game-high 12 saves in the loss for Moravian.
Top-seeded Catholic hosts fourth-seeded Drew in Wednesday's other semifinal matchup.
The winners of Wednesday's semifinal matchups will play for the Landmark Conference Championship on Saturday at the site of the highest remaining team. The winner of Saturday's title game will claim the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.