Baseball: Southland Vikings sweep past Lexington Snipes, reach MCL final series
July 30, 2014 10:24PM
Updated: September 1, 2014 8:12AM
When it came right down to it for the Southland Vikings, regular-season struggles were just that.
Having rolled to a 13-4 win Tuesday night, the Vikings went on the road and pulled off the sweep in the best-of-3 series, defeating Lexington 10-2 Wednesday night in Bloomington to advance to the Midwest Collegiate League championship.
“Our bats came alive in those middle innings, and the offense continued to carry us,” Vikings manager Chris Cunningham said. “We’re swinging some hot bats right now, and hopefully, we can carry it into the next series.”
The Vikings (29-12) advance to play the DuPage County Hounds — 2-1 winners Wednesday over the Northwest Indiana Oilmen for a series sweep — in Game 1 of the best-of-3 final at 7 p.m. Friday at Homewood-Flossmoor High School. The Vikings are gunning for back-to-back league championships.
Game 2 will be Saturday at Benedictine University’s athletic complex in Lisle. Game 3, if necessary, will be played Sunday at H-F.
Tyler House, a Rich Central product, tossed seven strong innings for the Vikings on Wednesday, scattering six hits and striking out three.
“I was able to spot my fastball and make sure my curveball was getting over for strikes,” House said. “I just had to focus a little more. Our bats have been hot since the All Star break so I knew our hot bats had my back.”
Southland scored three runs in the fourth, two in the fifth and five in the sixth to pull away for good. Following up his three RBI performance in Game One, Stefano Belmonte piled up another three RBI while Dan Potempa had three hits, a double and a RBI.
Jerry Houston and Bobby Sheppard chipped in with two hits apiece for the Vikings.
Lexington finishes the season 23-20 overall.