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Lake Erie

Visiting Panthers Pull Out Two Late Wins Over Storm at Classic Park Saturday

EASTLAKE, OHIO –  A sunny afternoon turned gloomy both in the sky and for the Lake Erie College baseball team Saturday (April 3) against visiting Ohio Dominican University at Classic Park. The Storm rallied in its last at-bat to force extra innings in game one before a ninth-inning home run lifted the Panthers to a 6-4 win. Lake Erie then saw a late lead slip away through the raindrops with a six-run sixth inning for ODU in a 7-3 win in game two.

The two wins gave Ohio Dominican (9-18) a three-game series sweep and extended the Storm’s (9-14) losing streak to a season-high six.
In the opener, John Bowron homered leading off the ninth to break a 4-4 tie. The Panthers added another run and Kyle Gore set the Storm down in order in the bottom of the inning for his second save in as many games against Lake Erie.
The Panthers looked to have the game one earlier when they scored three times in the top of the seventh, finally breaking through against LEC ace Adam Beach (Vermillion, Ohio/Vermillion), who had held ODU to just one run through the first six innings.
But in similar fashion, the Storm responded with three of their own in the bottom of the seventh, getting to ODU’s top hurler, Andy Onak.  Freshman Zach Mosbarger (Bellefontaine, Ohio/Bellefontaine) singled in two runs and sophomore Matt Toth (Lorain, Ohio/Admiral King) beat out a grounder to plate the tying run. 
But after a scoreless eighth, Bowron took reliever Logan Nordquist (Alliance, Ohio/Alliance) over the wall in left field – just edging the glove of left fielder Brandon James (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) – for the lead.
Onak (1-3) picked up the win, going eight innings. He allowed 11 hits and four runs, three earned, with two walks and three strikeouts. Beach lasted 6 1/3 innings, allowing four runs on 13 hits with no walks and five strikeouts.
Lake Erie scored an unearned run in the fourth on a throwing error by Onak. The Panthers tied the game at 1-1 an inning later on a single by John Brown.
Mosbarger, junior Nick Lovick (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) and freshman Cody Blood (Conneaut, Ohio/Conneaut) each had two hits for the Storm. Eian Banks had four hits and Evan Shaw and J.T. Feldkamp each had three for the Panthers.
When the Panthers pushed a run across in the first inning of game two, the Storm responded with three in the home half of the inning. Mosbarger led off the game with a triple just past a diving Bowron and scored on a squeeze play executed by Toth. After a Lovick single, James blasted a two-run shot- his fifth home run of the season- to the hill in left center.
After the first, sophomore Michael Backes (Hubbard, Ohio/Hubbard) breezed through the next four innings unscathed. He allowed just two hits in innings two though five, but was lifted after a walk and hit batter to open the sixth.
Sophomore Mike Morgan (Indian Lake, Ohio/Russells Point) came on and surrendered a leadoff single to Cale Wilburn to score a run and a balk and wild pitch allowed the Panthers to tie it up. Tyler Zaidel singled later in the inning with two outs to plate Wilburn for a 4-3 lead.
After another single, Felix Brown tripled off the glove of a diving James down the left field line and Bowron doubled to make it 7-3.
Alex Borgan earned the win for the Panthers, scattering seven hits through six-plus innings.  He got into trouble just once after James’ home run, but escaped a bases-loaded jam in the sixth. He walked three on the day and struck out one.
Brown had three more hits in the nightcap and Wilburn had a pair. James was the only Lake Erie player with two or more hits.
The Storm opens a four-day, seven-game road trip Tuesday, April 6, at Mansfield University (Pa.).