PAINESVILLE, Ohio- On the final day of the Lake Erie College baseball team's Storm Fall League, the Green Team forced a winner-take-all sudden death round but the Black Team was able to rebound from the earlier loss to win the 2013 SFL Cup Saturday (Oct. 19) at Braggs Field. Pitching ruled the day in less than ideal conditions, and some key momentum shifts decide the outcome of the game.
In the first game of the day, the Green Team struck first in the second, courtesy of a lead-off double from junior Dylan Yankle who was brought home on a single by third baseman Zach DeCamp.
The game remained relatively quiet until the sixth when the Black Team hit back-to-back singles off of Green Team pitcher Joey Samuele but the lefthander induced a 5-3 double play off to end the threat.
Green added insurance runs in the eighth off of black pitcher Brandon Grunda. Dillon Van Dyne launched a one out double to centerfield and was brought home on a Tyler Kmitt double to right center. Kmitt scored on the next pitch off a double from senior right fielder Garret Emling, pushing the lead to 3-0.
Brian Kilway came on in the ninth to collect the save, his first of the fall season. Winning pitcher Connor Fuller allowed one hit and recorded two strikeouts in three innings of work. The loss was charged to junior left hander Heath Kelley, who allowed one run on two hits, with one walk and one strikeout in two innings of work.
The Green Team was paced by Kmitt and Emling who had RBI doubles in the contest. The Black Team was led by a two-hit performance from freshman outfielder Luke Raley.
In the deciding sudden death game, the offensive team started with a runner on second base and was able to send four hitters to the plate. A single point was awarded for each base attained by either the base runner or batter.
The Black Team picked up four points off an RBI single by Sean Matthews which scored NicoDiIani and Luke Raley being a hit by pitch. Green was not to be outdone as Lou Peterlin and Rutger Luebke collected walks in their half of the inning. With the sudden death tied at 4, the game moved into a second sudden death, where both teams sent out with three hitters.
Hudeck and Matthews received back-to-back walks to start the sudden death for the Black Team. Luke Raley came through with a big hit that scored six points to put the Black ahead at 12-4. The Green Team put up a fight, but Black Team pitcher DJ Stastny collecting a big strikeout. Luebke singled to center for Green but it would not be enough as the Black Team held on to win the SFL Championship.
Emling was named series MVP, going 5-9 with a home run, a double and three RBI. He was a catalyst offensively and was instrumental in the Green team's success throughout the series. Connor Fuller was named the Cy Young of the series. The sophomore from Euclid, Ohio threw 5.1 scoreless innings, allowing one hit and collecting five strikeouts.
The Lake Erie Storm coaching staff would like to thank the players, friends, and families for their generous support throughout the fall season. They are looking forward to a great spring!
(Conner Fuller and Garrett Emling)