Lake Elsinore Storm

Storm Surge on Awful Nite to Get Within 3 Games of Final Playoff Spot

September 1, 2023 - California League (CalL)
Lake Elsinore Storm News Release

After a disappointing loss last night, the Lake Elsinore Storm remained four games out of the final playoff spot thanks to an Inland Empire 66ers loss to the Modesto Nuts. Tonight, on a night deemed Awful, the Storm were anything but.

Starting pitcher Braden Nett took the mound and after collecting the first two outs in swift fashion, he loaded the bases on two singles and a walk. On the sixth batter of the inning, he got himself into a 1-0 hole due to a clock violation. However, on a 3-1 pitch, the Giants batter would harmlessly fly out to Nick Vogt in left field which none yet knew would be the last time the Giants truly threatened to score.

For the Storm offense, it was death by a thousand base hits. With 10 of their 13 hits being singles, the Storm used small ball to their advantage and scored 11 total runs in their second shutout win of the series. In their first win, they also scored a number of runs that started with the number one but on Tuesday, there was no second digit.

Tonight, four Storm players would collect multiple hits including exciting new prospect, Homer Bush Jr., who went 2-4 with an RBI and two runs scored. His speed was once again on display with his third diving catch over the last two days, a bunt single in the first inning, and an RBI on a forced error due to the speed at which he was able to reach first base.

That would be the Storm's first run scored of the evening but in the third inning, they didn't stop there. Vogt would hit a single to bring the second run across the plate, Oswaldo Linares would collect a hard hat sacrifice fly, Victor Duarte would bring the fourth run home, and a Charlis Aquino double down the right field line would turn tonight's game quickly into a 6-0 blowout.

In the following inning, Lake Elsinore would do even more damage albeit half as much. A Rosman Verdugo walk would bring the seventh run of the game home before a Nik McClaughry double (his second night with an extra-base hit bringing home a run) brought two more runs home to give the Storm nine total with the Giants stumbling on offense. Nett would finish his night through five innings having struck out six total batters, allowing just three hits, and keeping a goose egg on the scoreboard.

In relief, Fernando Sanchez would go through three scoreless innings and Sam Whiting would close the game out to cement the final score at 11-0 thanks to a Duarte double that brought Bush Jr and Romeo Sanabria home in the bottom of the previous inning.

After winning tonight and yet another 66ers loss, the Storm sit now just three games back of Inland Empire for the final playoff spot with eight games remaining. Six of those games will be played in San Bernardino next week against those same 66ers. Before then, the Storm will need to finish off their last regular season homestand in 2023 with wins in order to keep the dream of back-to-back championships alive for the city of Lake Elsinore.

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California League Stories from September 1, 2023

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