The Lake Elsinore Storm fell to the Lancaster JetHawks 5-3 Thursday night, dropping out of first place for the first time in over a week.
The Storm scored in the bottom of the second to take an early lead. Jeremy Baltz reached on a fielder’s choice and scored thanks to a Gabriel Quintana single to put Lake Elsinore up 1-0.
Lancaster answered with a run of their own in the third, the only blemish on Storm starter Colin Rea’s (L, 5-3) first five innings of work.
Diego Goris put the Storm back in front in the bottom of the inning, depositing his eighth home run of the season over the left field wall. It was his eighth dinger of the season.
Rea was solid in his tenth start of the season. The righty scattered five hits over six innings of work and allowed just two earned runs, but Lancaster continued to foil the Storm at home with a three-run sixth that included two questionable calls from the base umpire.
The ‘Hawks added another unearned run in the eighth off of reliever Matt Shepherd, who was solid in three innings of relief work. Shepherd allowed three hits and struck out four.
Hunter Renfroe provided a spark in the ninth with his thirteenth home run of the season, but nothing more came in the inning and the Storm fell 5-3.
The loss completes the sweep for Lancaster (33-22), who have won six in a row and sit alone atop the California League South. Lake Elsinore (32-23) is now 2-9 at home against the JetHawks.
Bryce Morrow (1-0, 3.00 ERA) gets the start for the Storm today in Visalia, as The Eyes make their second foray up north this season. Jesse Darrah (3-1, 4.64 ERA) will go for the Rawhide.
First pitch is scheduled for 7:00pm.