Storm Rolls Over Rock in First Game of Series

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. (April 19, 2009) - Lake Erie College took on previously ranked Slippery Rock University in a four-game road series this weekend, taking one game from the hosts in eight innings by a score of 6-5 before dropping the final three games, 14-4, 5-2 and 11-4.

In game one, Lake Erie totaled nine hits and no errors. It recorded a four-run fifth inning to go up 5-2 before allowing the Rock three more runs for a tie score of five after seven complete innings. In the eighth, the Storm's Kyle Kemp (Spotsylvania, Ohio/James Monroe) reached base after being hit by a pitch to start the inning. A sacrifice bunt moved him to second and a single by Matt Vanni (Willowick, Ohio/Benedictine) moved him around the rest of the way.

Vanni finished the game 2-for-3 with one RBI and Ben Reed (Middlefield, Ohio/Cardinal) went 3-for-4 with one run and one RBI. Starter Patrick Mulligan (Brookfield, Ohio/Brookfield) went five innings without a decision as Jae Leeworthy (Newton Falls, Ohio/Newton Falls) improved to 3-0 on the season after three innings of relief.

In game two, Lake Erie totaled seven hits and one error as it scored half of its runs in the top of the first inning. Three multiple-run at bats for Slippery Rock sealed the Storm's fate early on as it was unable to recover at the plate. Dan Dowdell (North Ridgeville, Ohio/North Ridgeville) was the only Storm player with multiple hits. He went 2-for-4 with one run.

In day two, game three, the Storm kept things close, scoring one run in each of the first two innings, trailing just 3-2 after three complete innings. The Rock added single runs in the fourth and fifth innings to earn the victory. The Storm had five hits and one error in the contest with both Reed and Michael Morgan (Russells Point, Ohio/Indian Lake) going 2-for-3. Morgan also added one of the team's two RBIs.

In the final game of the series, Lake Erie went down 6-0 after three innings before a four-run rally in the fourth brought the team to within two runs of its hosts. The Rock scored four runs in the next inning then added another in the sixth, while the Storm remained scoreless the rest of the way. With six total hits, Lake Erie's Ryan Rua (Amherst, Ohio/Amherst) led the team with a 2-for-3 showing that included a double and one run.

For the series, Vanni hit .429 (3-for-7) and Rua hit .417 (5-for-12) with three runs and two RBIs. Morgan followed at .385 (5-for-13) with three runs and two RBIs and Reed hit .357 (5-for-14) with one run and one RBI.

Lake Erie (13-26) is scheduled to travel to Mercyhurst College on Tuesday for a 1 p.m. doubleheader.