DETROIT, MICH. – An RBI single in the eighth inning by fifth-year senior catcher Nick Lovick (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) gave the Lake Erie College baseball team a 5-4 win in the opener of its final weekend series at Wayne State University Saturday (May 5). In the second game of the day, the Storm stranded nine runners on base in a 5-1 loss.
The split puts the Storm's record at 26-22 overall and 22-12 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC). Currently second in the conference standings, Lake Erie can finish no worse than third in the final standings. Wayne State, ranked fourth in the latest NCAA Midwest Regional Poll, moves to 28-17 overall and 19-13 in the GLIAC.
Senior Kyle Kemp (Fredericksburg, Va./James Monroe) hit a two-run single in the second inning of game one to give the Storm the lead. They extended it to 4-1 in the fifth with a pair of runs. Sophomore Reid Rizzo (Cincinnati, Ohio/LaSalle) stole third and then took home on an errant throw from catcher Brad Guenther. Junior Pat Kilway (Tallmadge, Ohio/Tallmadge) homered over the 30-feet-high wall down the left field line to make it a three-run game.
The Warriors chipped away at the lead with two in the sixth and then tied it in the seventh before Lovick's game-winner.
Rizzo and Kilway were two of four Storm players with two hits in the contest. Junior Adam Beach (Vermilion, Ohio/Vermilion) was fantastic in his final tune-up before the postseason, allowing just one unearned run on three hits in five innings of work. He walked two and struck out four, but did not factor in the decision. Junior Doug Fox (Parma, Ohio/Valley Forge) earned the win (3-1), despite allowing the tying run. Freshman Heath Kelley (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) pitched a scoreless eighth for his third save.
Kyle Vesey and Alex Trojan each had two hits for the Warriors. Billy Hurley allowed the run in the eighth for Wayne State to take the loss on the mound.
In the nightcap, four more Storm players had two hits, including sophomore Garrett Emling (Tallmadge, Ohio/Tallmadge) for the second game in a row, but Lake Erie couldn't take advantage with runners in scoring position in the 5-1 loss.
Wayne State's Kyle Zimmerman drove in four runs, including a three-run home run in the third inning off Storm starter Logan Nordquist (Alliance, Ohio/Alliance). He was one of three Warriors with at least two hits.
Alex Pierse (6-1) tossed six solid innings for the home team, limiting the Storm to just an unearned run on seven hits. Nordquist (2-5) allowed four runs on five hits in four innings.
The two teams wrap up the regular season on Sunday, May 6, starting at noon at the WSU Baseball Field.