Win Streak and Home Opener Spoiled by Walsh

Juliana Brotzman
Juliana Brotzman

PAINESVILLE, OHIO – Jenna Rosso doubled down the line in the top of the ninth inning of game two to give visiting Walsh University a sweep of the Lake Erie College softball team Wednesday (March 21), spoiling the Storm's home opener at Painesville Kiwanis Recreation Park.

The extra-inning hit by Rosso scored placed runner Katie Musgrave and ended what was an outstanding pitchers' duel.  Sophomore Dawn Ondercin (Sheffield, Ohio/Brookside) tossed a complete game for the Storm (3-10), allowing just one earned run on six hits. Ondercin (2-4) walked three and struck out two, and worked her way out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam in the eighth, but took the hard-luck loss.

The Cavaliers got four solid if unspectacular innings from starter Hannah Dodson, who allowed two runs (one earned) on seven hits with a strikeout.  Kelsey Ford came on for the second time Wednesday and held the Storm to just two hits over the final five innings. She struck out four and improved to 4-2 on the season.

Lake Erie took a 1-0 lead in both games.    

In the opener, the Storm jumped on the board in the bottom of the first when senior catcher Megan Foley (Brunswick, Ohio/Brunswick) singled in redshirt freshman Maddie Klemp (Akron, Ohio/Coventry) for the game's first run and a 1-0 lead.

The lead would be short lived, however, as the visiting Cavaliers (12-10) posted a five-run second inning.  The first five hitters reached base in the frame and the Cavaliers used five hits and a pair of run-scoring groundouts to take a 5-1 lead.  They added to the lead with a pair of runs in the fourth on Kendra Gerber'second double of the game. 

Lake Erie got a run back in the fifth when Foley scored on Juliana Brotzman's (Madison, Ohio/Madison) single.  But the Cavaliers scored two more in the sixth and then added five unearned runs in the seventh for the 14-2 final and snap the Storm's three-game win streak.

Brotzman had three hits for the Storm while Klemp and sophomore Jennifer Gratz (Richwood, Ohio/North Union) each had two hits.  Redshirt freshman pitcher Amanda Anderson (Streetsboro, Ohio/Streetsboro) allowed two runs on two hits in one inning to fall to 0-2.

Gerber had three hits and three RBIs, Casey Ruppel also had three hits and Kendra Marcus had a pair of hits and drove in three for Walsh. Erin Ebert (6-5) allowed two runs on seven hits in 4 2/3 innings to earn the win.

Brotzman singled in a run to start game two and the Cavaliers answered back with a run in the second with an unearned run.  Rosso singled in a run in the fourth to give Walsh a 2-1 lead, but LEC came right back with sophomore Fayth Atkins (Holland, Ohio/Springfield) bringing in the tying run.

The game remained deadlock from there until Rosso's game-winner in the ninth.  The Storm got a runner to third base with one out in both the eighth and ninth innings, but could next get the run across.

Brotzman had two more hits in the nightcap and senior Haley Rathge (Edon, Ohio/Napoleon) also had a pair of hits.  

The Storm's busy home opening weekend continues on Friday, March 23, when they open Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) play against Saginaw Valley State University.

-LEC-