Eric Sogard went 4-for-4 and Kellen Kulbacki homered and drove in four runs Thursday as the Lake Elsinore Storm swept past the Inland Empire 66ers, 8-2, to advance to the California League South Division Finals.
The victory came after Lake Elsinore won the completion of a suspended game and propelled the Storm into the second round and a matchup with the Lancaster JetHawks.
Sogard doubled and scored on Kulbacki's two-run single in the first inning, then singled in the fifth and seventh. After Kulbacki's two-run shot in the seventh, Sogard plated two more runs with another base hit in the eighth.
Luis Durango went 3-for-5 and Cedric Hunter had two hits and scored twice for the Storm, who lost to San Jose in last year's Championship Series.
Lake Elsinore starter Nathan Culp (1-0) yielded two unearned runs on five hits while striking out four and walking two over 5 2/3 innings. Brandon Gomes allowed two hits and fanned four in two scoreless frames.
Inland Empire's Victor Garate (0-1) lasted 4 1/3 innings and surrendered four runs on nine hits and two walks with three strikeouts.
Matt Berezay went 3-for-4 with an RBI for the 66ers. Box score
In other California League action:
Stockton Ports 7, Modesto Nuts 6
Lake Elsinore Storm 10, Inland Empire 66ers 7
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.