PAINESVILLE, OHIO – Senior Brayan Cacique (Caracas, Venezuela/John I. Leonard) homered twice and drove in five runs to lead the Lake Erie College baseball team to a doubleheader sweep of the University of Findlay Saturday (April 14) at Braggs Field. Behind a seven-run inning in each game, the Storm won 8-2 and 15-4 to take over sole possession of first place in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
After Tommy Roush singled in a run in the top of the first to give the Oilers (12-19, 5-13 GLIAC) a 1-0 lead in the opener, the Storm (17-14, 13-5 GLIAC)exploded for seven runs in the bottom of the first. After the first two hitters reached base, Cacique hit a three-run home run to left field and junior DH Pat Kilway (Tallmadge, Ohio/Tallmadge) followed with a solo shot to nearly the same spot to make it 4-0.
The home run for Kilway was the first of his college career.
Senior C Nick Lovick (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) drove in another run with a ground ball, junior 3B Cody Blood (Conneaut, Ohio/Conneaut) hit a sacrifice fly and senior RF Matt Toth (Lorain, Ohio/Admiral King) - batting for the second time in the inning - singled to score Lovick and make it 7-0. In the inning, 13 men batted, with eight getting hits.
A single by Reid Rizzo (Cincinnati, Ohio/LaSalle) made it 8-1 in the third. Findlay scored an unearned run in the fourth, but that was all the Oilers could muster off junior RHP Brian Kilway (Tallmadge, Ohio/Tallmadge). After giving up a walk and two singles in the first, Kilway (4-1) settled down and scattered just five hits the rest of the way. He won his fourth straight decision, allowing just one earned run (two total) on seven hits with a walk and six strikeouts in seven innings.
Toth finished 3-of-4 and Rizzo had two hits and a walk for the Storm. Roush, Reid Rothenbuhler and David Cort each had two hits for the Oilers. Findlay starter Preston Zachrich (3-3) went the distance, despite the rough first inning, allowing eight runs on 11 hits. He walked three and struck out four.
Lake Erie struck again in the first inning of game two. Pat Kilway hit a sacrifice fly and senior 1B Jae Leeworthy (Newton Falls, Ohio/Newton Falls) singled in a run for a 2-0 lead.
The Oilers tied it in the third. Eric Terwilliger led off the inning with a solo home run to right field and Reid Rothenbuhler doubled in a run. But the Storm's second big inning of the day, a seven-run third, broke the game wide open.
With runners at second and third, Cacique singled off a drawn-in Rothenbuhler's glove and Kilway followed with another sacrifice fly. Freshman OF Aaron Lindgren (Willoughby, Ohio/South) singled home a run to make it 5-2 before sophomore OF Garrett Emling (Tallmadge, Ohio/Tallmadge) scored Leeworthy with the second sac fly of the frame. A pair of walks loaded the bases with two outs and Rizzo cleared them with a triple to right field, giving the Storm a 9-2 lead.
The Oilers got an unearned run in the fourth before Lake Erie put the game away with a three-run bottom half. Emling singled up the middle to score a run and then crossed the plate himself on Blood's two-out, two-run base hit to left.
In the fifth, Cacique homered again, his team-leading fourth of the season, Lindgren added another RBI single and senior Johnny Christani (Chardon, Ohio/Chardon drew a bases-loaded walk to make it 15-4.
Junior Logan Nordquist (Alliance, Ohio/Alliance) went five innings for the win. He allowed two earned runs (four total) on eight hits and did not walk a batter. Nordquist (2-2) struck out three to win his second straight start and even his record on the season. Freshman Cory Fox (Vermilion, Ohio/Vermilion) and junior Jimmie Shaw (Holland, Ohio/Toledo St. John) each tossed a scoreless inning to close out the game.
Cacique went 2-for-2 in game two, scoring four times as the Storm posted its highest scoring game of the season. He also stole two bases on the day. Toth went a combined 5-for-7 with three runs scored and two steals in the doubleheader. Both Leeworthy and Lindgren had two hits in the nightcap.
Findlay starter Darrell Thobe (0-2) lasted just 2 2/3 innings, allowing nine runs (four earned) on five hits and four walks. Roush and Cort had two hits apiece in game two and four each on the afternoon.
The two teams wrap up their four-game weekend series on Sunday, April 15, at Braggs Field. First pitch is scheduled for 12 p.m.