PAINESVILLE, Ohio— The Lake Erie College baseball team opened a four-game Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) doubleheader against Ohio Dominican University Saturday (April 23) on Senior Day.
The Storm won game one 11-4 and game two 10-7.
With two outs in the second, Kody Bledose (Elyria, Ohio/Amherst Steele) singled to center field. Rutger Luebke (Medina, Ohio/Medina) followed up with a single to right center, moving Bledsoe to third. After Luebke stole second, Tyler Bires (Lorain, Ohio/Amherst) hit in to an error, scoring Bledose and Luebke.
Wes Birchmeier (Miamisburg, Ohio/Miamisburg) and Lucas Raley (Hinckley, Ohio/Medina Highland) led off the third with back-to-back singles. After a double steal, Birchmeier came home on a pass ball as Louie Peterlin (Mentor, Ohio/Lake Catholic) earned a walk. A single by Nigel Williams (Cincinnati, Ohio/La Salle) brought Raley home for run four. The Storm offense continued to produce as Bledsoe doubled to left center, bringing Williams and Peterlin home, extending the lead to 6-0.
The Panthers scored two in the fourth to cut the lead to four.
With two outs and the bases load in the fourth, Cale Giddings (Pickerington, Ohio/Pickerington North/Akron) doubled to center field, scoring Birchmeier and Peterlin. Bledsoe hit a homerun to left field, scoring Giddings and Nigel and extending the lead to 11-2.
The Panthers added two runs in the sixth but the Storm closed the door in the seventh to seal the win.
Bledsoe led the Storm offense, going three-of-four with five RBI and two runs. Giddings had a pair of RBI while Williams had one. Birchmeier, Williams and Raley had two hits apiece.
Ryan Lally (Wooster, Ohio/Wooster) picked up the win for the Storm in relief. He went 3.1 innings giving up two runs while striking out six. Connor Fuller (Euclid, Ohio/Euclid) started on the mound. In 3.2 innings, he gave up zero earned runs while striking out two.
The Panthers got on the board first, scoring two in the top of the first.
The Storm responded in the bottom of the frame. After Birchmeier was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning, Raley homered to left center to tie it at two. Williams and Giddings followed up with back-to-back homeruns, putting the Storm in front 4-2.
After the Panthers scored one in the third, the Storm got back to work in the bottom of the frame. Raley was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Peterlin singled through the left side to put Raley at second. Williams followed up by singling up the middle, scoring Raley and moving Peterlin to third. After Williams moved to second on a wild pitch, Bledsoe loaded the bases. Luebke doubled to left center, bringing Williams and Peterlin across the plate to extend the lead to 7-3.
The Panthers scored one in the fourth to cut the lead to 7-4.
Williams led off the fifth with a singled and moved to third on a Giddings double. Luebke was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Giddings and Williams scored on an error by the Panthers, extending the lead to 9-4.
Ohio Dominican plated one in the top of the sixth but Williams matched it his second solo homerun in the bottom of the frame.
The Panthers loaded the bases in the seventh but Michael Stryffeler (Sagamore Hills, Ohio/Padua Franciscan) came in and forced a flyout to centerfield to get out of the jam.
Ohio Dominican added two runs in the eighth but the Storm shut it down in the ninth to seal the win.
Williams went four-for-four in the game with four runs and four RBI. Raley had two hits, two runs and two RBI. Giddings also had two hits with two runs and a RBI. Luebke had three RBI.
David Lemasters (Cortland, Ohio/Lakeview) pitched 6.2 innings, giving up five runs while striking out 11. Stryffeler picked up his third save of the season.
The Storm is back in action Sunday (April 24) to wrap-up the series with the Panthers.