Baseball: Southland Vikings knock off Lexington 4-3
Dan Potempa was seeing the ball well and had nothing to show for it Friday night.
He had a popout, lineout and strikeout through three at-bats.
Potempa made sure his fourth at-bat counted in a big way.
His two-run home run in the bottom of the eighth put the Southland Vikings up for good in their 4-3 win over Lexington at Homewood-Flossmoor High School in a Midwest Collegiate League game.
“I was seeing the pitches all day, but their pitcher was getting me out,” Potempa said. “I was getting myself out. I told myself I was going to get an out this time and was able to square up, let it fly.”
The win was the fourth in a row for the Vikings (8-5).
Lexington (6-6) went up 3-2 in the top of the eighth on Cole Robinson’s RBI single.
In the bottom of the inning, Potempa teed off an pitch from Lexington starter Brett Fanning, depositing the ball over the 30-foot-tall batter’s eye in center field. It was the Providence product’s second homer of the season.
“We’re not going to press (being down late),” Potempa said. “We’ve got a deep, deep lineup with a lot of power. If we give up a couple of runs, we’ll get them right back.”
Connor Ryan (Lockport) pitched a 1-2-3 ninth with two strikeouts to record the save. Vikings starting pitcher Brandon White went six strong innings but didn’t figure in the decision. He allowing one unearned run on four hits and two walks with three strikeouts.
Rob Cifelli had a double and scored twice for Southland. Bobby Sheppard added a double and an RBI. Mount Carmel product Jeff Boehm finished 3-for-3 with a walk and an RBI. He scored on Potempa’s home run.
With the Vikings beginning a stretch of six games in six days starting Friday, the win couldn’t have come at a better time.
“We’re hoping this is a momentum-builder heading into the stretch,” Boehm said. “We’ve got a lot of guys who can produce, and (have) a little more power we haven’t shown yet. I’m sticking with my approach, staying loose at the plate. If I’m going opposite field, that’s when I’m hitting well.”