Clermont, Fla. -- Grand Valley State kept its strong start to the 2012 year going on Monday, as the 24th-ranked Lakers won a pair of games for its second sweep in two days. GVSU moved to 4-0 on the year with a 5-3 victory against Northern State and defeated Urbana 8-0 in a five-inning mercy rule.

The Lakers defeated Assumption (4-1) and Saint Rose (3-2) on the team's opening day on Sunday, a pair of games that turned out to be pitcher's duels. Grand Valley State's potent offense took charge a little bit more on Monday, especially in game two against the Blue Knights.

In the top of the first inning against Northern State, sophomore shortstop Briauna Taylor laced a one-out triple down the right-field line. Junior pitcher Katie Martin followed that with a double to right-center, scoring Taylor for a 1-0 Laker lead. It could have been an even greater inning, but GVSU left the bases loaded to end the inning.

Northern State tied the game in the bottom of the second inning after a leadoff double from Kelsey Robling, who eventually scored on a Laker error. GVSU answered quickly by notching two runs in the top of the third. Junior right fielder Emily Jones reached on a fielder's choice with two outs before junior second baseman Kayleigh Bertram smacked a two-run homer to left center, pushing the Lakers out to a 3-1 advantage.

Grand Valley State added single runs in the fifth and seventh innings, thanks to a pair of hits from senior Maggie Kerrigan. In the fifth, Kerrigan's double to left-center scored Bertram, who walked with two outs. The seventh inning saw Kerrigan single to right-center and score junior Jackie Teutsch, who was a pinch runner. After the pair of Kerrigan RBIs, GVSU was up 5-1. Northern State was able to scrap together two runs in the bottom of the seventh, but the Lakers closed the game for the third consecutive win.

While GVSU scored five runs on 10 hits, the team left 11 players on base. Kerrigan and Bertram were both 2-for-3 with two RBIs apiece, while Bertram scored a pair of runs. Senior catcher Carli Raisutis was 2-for-3 at the plate, as well. Martin (1-0) earned the win on the mound, allowing one run on four hits in four innings of work. She walked two and struck out two. Sophomore Kayla Hurdrecorded her first career save by giving up two runs in three innings of relief, while striking out two batters.

The Lakers wasted little time getting off to a fast start against Urbana in game two. GVSU notched five runs on five hits in the bottom of the first inning. Junior Nellie Kosola led off with a single to center. She easily scored on a stand-up RBI triple, this time to left field, from Taylor to make the score 1-0. Two batters later, sophomore Miranda Cleary singled to left field, scoring Taylor and pushing Martin (who walked) to second. After a flyout, Bertram doubled down the left field line, scoring both Martin and Cleary for a 4-0 lead. Bertram finished the inning by scoring on an Urbana error later in the inning.

In the second, Martin reached on a one-out double to right field and eventually scored on another run-scoring hit (a single to right center) from Bertram. Later in the frame, Jones singled to left field, scoring Calkins (who walked before Bertram's base hit) for a 7-0 cushion. Cleary added a sacrifice fly in the third inning, which pushed pinch hitter Sarah Wysepast the plate for her first collegiate run.

That would be more than enough run support for the two GVSU pitchers. Senior Andrea Nicholson (2-0) earned the win by pitching three innings of one-hit ball, walking one batter and fanning three hitters. Junior Hannah Santorathrew a similar line, allowing one hit, one walk, and three strikeouts in two innings of relief.

Nine different Lakers combined to notch the team's 13 base hits, as Taylor, Martin, Bertram, and Teutsch each recorded multi-hit contests. Bertram added three RBIs, while Cleary notched a pair of ribbies. Martin scored twice for GVSU.