KISSIMMEE, FLA - Backed by the bat of senior Brittany Sostre (Parma, Ohio/Valley Forge/Walsh), Lake Erie College (1-0) defeated Wilmington (Del.) University, 8-2, in the season opener at the Rebel Spring Games in Kissimmee, Fla. The game marked Kristin Hall's debut as a head coach of the Storm and was the first win for Lake Erie in a season opener since at least 2004.
(Watch Video of Brittany Sostre's fourth inning home run below.)
It was also a college debut in the circle for Sara Shields (Randolph, Ohio/Waterloo) and the freshman did not disappoint. Shields allowed five hits and two runs over five and two-thirds innings. She surrendered just one run on two hits over the first five innings before tiring in the sixth.
After a scoreless first inning, Wilmington struck first with a blooper into left to a take a 1-0 advantage into the top of the second.
The WU lead would be short lived as the Storm roared to six runs in the second. The rally started with a pair of walks and senior outfielder Danielle Finkler (Chardon, Ohio/Berkshire) drove in Lake Erie's first run. In all, 11 batters came to the plate and five different batters drove in runners as senior infielder Sostre had the innings' lone extra base hit with a double.
Sostre would do more damage in the fourth inning with a solo home run to lead off the frame. The Storm would get another in the inning as a double to left-center from freshman first baseman Juliana Brotzman (Madison, Ohio/Madison) drove in junior catcher Megan Foley (Brunswick, Ohio/Brunswick).
Wilimington threatened to get back in the game in the top of the sixth as they plated one run and forced junior Sam Ronde (Reynoldsburg, Ohio/Reynoldsburg) to the pitcher's plate in relief. Ronde got out of the jam with a nice play at third base by Sostre and struck out the side in the seventh to wrap up the victory.
Sostre led Lake Erie at the plate going three-for-four with a home run and pair of doubles. Foley and Brotzman each had two hits games with a run scored and RBI.
The Storm will be in action all week down in Kissimmee as part of its annual Spring Break trip.