TAMPA, Fla.— The Lake Erie College baseball team opened the season with a narrow loss to the top-ranked University of Tampa Spartans, 5-3, Tuesday (March 3) in Tampa.
Aaron Lindgren (Willoughby, Ohio/Willloughby South) was the first base runner of the season for the Storm via walk in the first inning. He then advanced to second on a wild pitch. Zak DeCamp (Gahanna, Ohio/St. Francis DeSales) brought Lindgren home with a hit up the middle to give the Storm a 1-0 lead. However, the Spartans scored two runs in the bottom of the frame to gain the lead.
Neither team scored again until the sixth inning. Lindgren opened the inning with a triple. After Lucas Raley (Hinckley, Ohio/Hinckley) walked, DeCamp reached on a fielder's choice, scoring Lindgren in the process. The Spartans walked Sean Mathews (Washington, Mich./Warren De La Salle) and Cale Giddings (Pickerington, Ohio/Pickerington Norht/Akron) back-to-back, bringing home Raley and giving the Storm a 3-2 lead.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Spartans plated two to regain the advantage, 5-2. They added one more in the bottom of the eighth to own a 5-3 lead heading into the ninth.
Austin Bovenzi (Fairport, N.Y./McQuaid Jesuit) led off the ninth with a single to center field. Lindgren hit into a fielder's choice. Raley moved Lindgren to second with a single and shortly after, both moved up a base on a wild pitch. However, the Storm offense was unable to bring the runners home as Tampa held on for the win.
Bovenzi led the Storm with two hits while Lindgren, Raley, DeCamp and Mathews had one apiece. DeCamp had two RBI while Giddings had one. Lindgren came across the plate twice while Raley scored once.
Connor Fuller (Euclid, Ohio/Euclid) had the longest outing for the Storm on the plate, going four innings, striking out one and allowing two earned runs. Heath Kelley (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) pitched two scoreless innings for the Storm.
The Storm is back in action Wednesday afternoon (March 4) to face the University of Sciences.