On a cold, windy Saturday afternoon with snow flurries falling at first pitch, Lourdes University's baseball team dropped a 6-3 contest to Rochester (Mich.) at Mercy Field.
Rochester did nearly all of its damage in the opening inning, taking advantage of two Lourdes errors to plate five runs. Two bunt hits, the second which included a throwing error, followed by a fielder's choice plated the first run before an infield single made it 2-0 Warriors. With two outs, a bases loaded error by the Gray Wolves cleared the bases and put the visitors in front by five.
Lourdes got one run back in the bottom of the first as Nick Toth (Medina, Ohio/Hudson H.S.) was hit by a pitch, stole second, and scored on a two-out hit by Cole Fitzgerald (Rome, N.Y./Centerville [Ohio] H.S.). Mike Calloway (Detroit, Mich./Cass Tech H.S.) led off the third with a walk, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt, and scored on a Marty Ramirez (Toledo, Ohio/Start H.S.) single to pull the Gray Wolves to within four.
Rochester added its final run in the fifth on a walk and two two-out singles. Lourdes answered the run with one of its own in the bottom half of the inning as John Crooks (Toledo, Ohio/Ottawa Hills H.S.) was hit by a pitch, moved to third on a single Ramirez, and scored on a passed ball. Neither team would cross the plate the rest of the day.
Ryan Balazy earned the win (2-1) for Rochester, allowing two earned runs and four hits over five innings. Scott Kunert pitched a scoreless ninth for his first save of the year. Lee Lovejoy (Ravenna, Ohio/Ravenna H.S.) suffered the loss (0-2), giving up six runs, three of which were earned, and seven hits in 4.2 innings of work. Nick Patterson (Copley, Ohio/Copley H.S.) allowed just two hits in 2.1 innings of scoreless relief while Sean Koerber (Grosse Pointe, Mich./North H.S.) struck out four in his two innings on the hill.
Fitzgerald and Ramirez each accounted for two of Lourdes six hits on the afternoon.