* Northwood is scheduled to play a Saturday doubleheader
Lake Erie will head south and then north to get in a pair of Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference doubleheaders this weekend. For the seventh and eighth consecutive games, LEC will be at Walsh University in North Canton, Ohio, on Saturday. That battle will be against the Lakers of Lake Superior State University. The Storm will then travel to Midland, Mich., for a Sunday-afternoon twin bill against the Northwood Timberwolves. Lake Erie heads into the games winless in six GLIAC games, and over their last four games the Storm offense has slumped, averaging less than a run per game.
On the season, the Storm are averaging 2.8 runs per game and yielding 8.7. Lake Erie is batting an improved .271/.319/.357 (batting/on-base/slugging) on the season, but the Green & White have batted just .198/.248/.228 in producing a total of three runs over their last four games.
Lake Superior is a game ahead of LEC in the early-season GLIAC standings. The Lakers are averaging 3.1 RPG while yielding 7.2 RPG. They have coughed up 8.8 RPG in GLIAC play.
Northwood heads into the weekend tied for fourth place in the league standings. The Timberwolves have thus far averaged 4.9 RPG. On the strength of a 2.63 ERA, they have held foes to just 3.3 RPG.
GROUND CONTROL: Ground balls will likely figure to be a sought-after premium at Walsh, where LEC hurlers have thus far yielded 10 home runs in six games this season. Lake Erie pitchers allowed no home runs in five straight games prior to their March 22 debut in North Canton. With a 50-percent groundball rate, Amanda Anderson has been Lake Erie's top groundball producer this season. Anderson leads the staff with a 5.32 ERA; she has yielded just two extra-base hits (both doubles) in 23-2/3 innings pitched.
EN FUEGO: Both Jeniffer Gratz and Darrian Yanek are batting .458 (11-of-24) over the Storm's last eight contests. Yanek has an .833 slugging percentage over that stretch. Over those eight games, she has three doubles, two home runs and eight RBIs.
SPLITS-VILLE: The Storm are – 3-2 when scoring first … 0-12 when their opponent scores first … 3-1 when holding a foe to five runs or less … 0-13 when their opponent scores six runs or more … 3-6 when committing one error or less … 0-8 when committing two or more errors.
FAB FROSH: Yanek (.280/.308/.480), Elizabeth Karako (.310/.388/.357) and Lindsay Valvoda (.286/.333/.551) have been three solid first-year contributors thus far in 2014. That trio – freshmen all – have combined to produce 17 extra-base hits and 24 runs batted in.