PAINESVILLE, Ohio – Storm Head Coach Brian McGee announced Monday that three players have made commitments to continue their careers at Lake Erie.
Kody Bledsoe of Elyria, Ohio, David LeMasters of Cortland, Ohio, and Sam Montgomery of Columbus, Ohio, will be LEC-bound next fall. All three have been standouts in their prep careers, combining for numerous high school awards and accolades.
"In this early period we were able to add three quality players and quality people," said McGee. "These guys add offense, defense and pitching, and I like their approaches to the game. We're very excited to add them to our program."
Bledsoe is a right-handed-batting middle infielder attending Amherst High School. He has been a three-year letterman for Head Coach Matt Rositano, whose Comets won a district title in 2012 and a Southwest Conference championship in 2013. As a junior (2013), the 5-foot-11, 165-pounder batted .284 with four doubles and two home runs. He collected 15 runs batted in while swiping six bases.
LeMasters is a right-handed pitcher at Lakeview High School. Playing for Head Coach Ron Dejulio, he has posted back-to-back All-American Conference campaigns (2012-13). In 2013, the 6-foot-1 hurler went a combined 12-2 with 155 strikeouts against just 42 walks (high school and summer league). His Creekside Fitness summer team finished as runner-up in the Ohio Connie Mack tournament and in the National Amateur Baseball Federation World Series. Creekside won the 2013 Continental Amateur Baseball Association World Series.
Montgomery is a right-handed-batting outfielder at Bishop Hartley High School. He has been tabbed as an All-Central Catholic League performer in each of his three prep seasons (2011-13). Montgomery powered Head Coach Chad Young's Bishop Hartley squad with big numbers in 2013. He batted .411 with 21 extra-base hits, and 34 RBIs. For good measure, the two-time all-district selection also stole 21 bases in his high school season.
Lake Erie went 18-30 in 2013. The Storm is scheduled to swing into its 13th season in February.
Player Profiles …
Kody Bledsoe (IF | 5-11, 165 | B/T: R/R | Elyria, Ohio – Amherst HS)
Three-year varsity player at Amherst … named All-SWC and to the Crossroads Team in 2013 … hit .284 with four doubles and two home runs as a junior; garnered 15 RBIs and six stolen bases … plays summer ball for the Midwest Pelicans (Neal French and Frank Russo, coaches).
LEC Head Coach Brian McGee: "Since taking over the program, we have had a rich tradition for producing and showcasing good short stops. If you know your Lake Erie Baseball history, you are aware of the names Ryan Rua, Reid Rizzo, and currently Sean Mathews. With that being said, we needed someone who we felt can continue to carry that tradition forward into the future. We pride ourselves on this being a place where great short stops come to play, and we feel Kody can be just that. Kody will have a tremendous impact in our team's defensive ability in the middle of the infield and has the personality to become a vocal leader on the field as his game matures. He possesses soft hands, light feet, and plenty of arm strength to get it across the diamond. … Kody comes from two of the best programs in Northeast Ohio -- Amherst High School and the Midwest Pelicans. We wanted a middle guy with that kind of background, someone who has played the demanding position at the highest levels possible and has some toughness to him. Kody has the reputation for being a grinder and workhorse, so he someone that will transition nicely into our structured environment. His offensive game has elevated over the past few seasons consistently, however I have seen his biggest strides come in this past year specifically. He is a strong kid, who can drive the baseball well to all fields, and situationally can produce what is expected in small ball or aggressive situations. I see Kody as a slick fielding, smart baseball player, who is fundamentally sound and possesses the tools needed to be successful at the college level."
David LeMasters (RHP | 6-1, 155 | B/T: R/R | Cortland, Ohio – Lakeview HS)
Three-year letterman for Head Coach Ron Dejulio and the Lakeview Bulldogs … 2013 HS season: 1.57 ERA with 106 strikeouts, 25 walks; named All-American Conference as both a junior and a sophomore … posted a 0.98 ERA, 49 strikeouts and 17 walks for a 25-2 Creekside Fitness (Terry Landis, coach) summer team that won the CABA World Series … tabbed as a Youngstown Class-B All-Star in 2013 …owns a 3-1/2-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio over his last two playing seasons.
LEC Head Coach Brian McGee: "David in my assessment is by far one of the best pitchers I had not only seen this past recruiting season but in previous years as well. I am very excited about his commitment because pitching wins, and this kid is a winner. He has an explosive fastball that jumps out of his hand effortlessly. He exhibits sharp break and depth to his off-speed pitches, locates three, almost four, pitches for strikes, and changes speeds and eye levels often. I watched him pitch a few times this summer in games where he just dominated opposing hitters. He is showing me quickly that in time that he is going to get it done not only on the field but off the field as well. Just finished with great first-quarter grades, is a standup member of his community, and has been extremely loyal in this process. I can't wait to see David on the bump in a Storm uniform."
Sam Montgomery (OF | 5-10, 160 | B/T: R/R | Columbus, Ohio – Bishop Hartley HS) Has lettered and been an All-Central Catholic League selection in each of his three prep seasons under Head Coach Chad Young (2011-13) … terrorized opposing defenses to the tune of a .411 batting average, 21 extra-base hits and 34 RBIs in 2013 … registered 11 doubles, seven triples, three home runs and 21 stolen bases in junior season and was an all-district and all-metro honoree … batted .516 with 12 doubles , 13 triples and 44 steals for Eastside Irish summer league team (Mike Montgomery, coach).
LEC Head Coach Brian McGee: "We are blessed and lucky to be getting a player of Sam's caliber. Sam came up for his visit in the fall and did a wonderful job from all ends in presenting himself. Something here at Lake Erie we like to do is give the kid a chance to sell himself when visiting, so its not just us trying to sell ourselves. We are encouraged by individuals who come here with the attitude that they want to impress us, instead of walking around here like we have to convince them. With Sam, we know we are getting a young man here who is of solid character, is academically sound, athletically gifted, and who wants to be here. I have never had the opportunity to coach someone with this type of speed and resilience on the base paths. He is a "hungry runner" as I like to call it. He is going to be able to bring an element to this program I have wanted. This kid can flat out take bases. In addition to being a threat on the bases, Sam can get himself on base. He is a tremendous offensive player who can hit for average, power, bunt for a hit, push, etc. He is a nightmare for corner infielders. On the other side of the field, defensively, he will cover more ground than we have out there and supply more than adequate arm strength. We have a specific need, an intangible need we can't necessarily teach, and Sam is going to give us that."