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Johnson Motors - 877-816-0659
Vikings nip Warriors
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
By Jaclyn Yingling Sports Editor
FLINTON - Coming into Tuesday's game, the Glendale and West Branch baseball teams seemed to be going in different directions.
The Vikings started 0-2, but righted the ship on Monday with a victory over Harmony. The Warriors also started 0-2 and were hoping to do the same on Tuesday.
But Glendale had other ideas, pounding out 12 hits in an 11-10 victory.
The Vikings got a complete game from Tyler Potutschnig, while Glendale took advantage of six West Branch errors.
"It was a good job," said Vikes head coach Joe Klezek. "It evened us up. We got back to .500. The best thing I am starting to see is that we are starting to communicate. The first two or three games, there has been no communication and that has been our downfall.
"Even the first half, we were having some trouble. The second half, it actually looked like we knew what we were doing. It's getting better every time we play, and I hope it continues."
The Warriors had four errors in the outfield, including two that kept two big innings going for Glendale.
"Not only do the extra bases add up, the extra pitches add up on our pitchers," West Branch head coach Tyler Good said. "They get tired. We gave away six outs in one inning.
"This is not how we envisioned this and how we have been practicing. We are not putting a whole game together yet."
The Warriors got on the board in the top of the first, thanks to a sacrifice fly from Ty Thomas.
But Glendale got the run back, plus three more, in the bottom of the frame.
The Vikings had their first six batters reach base against West Branch freshman Kody Trude, who was making his varsity debut.
Matt Schultz knocked in two runs, while Craig Hewitt added an RBI single. Glendale also scored a run on an error, giving the Vikings a 4-1 lead after one.
"They had some trouble out there," Klezek said. "That outfield out there is horrendous. It needs a roller taken to it like no other. We got some lucky bounces and we capitalized on it.
"I was happy with our running game. We did well and we got decent jumps. We got lucky with some balls out of the zone, and it helped us out. Some of them we just flat-out beat. That helps and that's a good thing."
Potutschnig got into a jam in the second, as J.P. Hayles got things going with a one-out double. Zach McGonigal was hit with a pitch before Walker Williams drew a two-out walk. Chad Speigle then ripped a 2-2 pitch into left field, allowing both runners to score.
The Viking junior buckled down and got a pop-up to third to end the inning.
Trude got out of his own jam in the bottom of the frame, getting out of the inning with runners on first and third.
West Branch took an 8-4 lead with five runs in the top of the third inning courtesy of four hits and an error.
Myers, Hayles, McGonigal and Jonathan Sanker all had RBIs in the frame. McGonigal's came on a double.
Glendale chased Trude from the game in the third after he allowed three runs to put the score at 8-7.
Colt Shope and Anthony Barnhart brought home two of the runs, while another scored on a Warrior error in the outfield.
West Branch brought in Thomas, who got out of the inning with a strikeout.
The Warriors got a run in the top of the fourth on an RBI double by Myers to extend their lead to 9-7.
But the Vikings weren't done, and rallied for four runs in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Dakota Sinclair led off the frame with a double. Barnhart followed that up with a single to right field that was misplayed, allowing Sinclair to score and Barnhart to get to third.
Barnhart later scored on a single by Matt Kimberly, tying the game at 9-9.
West Branch turned a double play to erase Kimberly from the basepaths and get Potutschnig at first.
That looked to get the Warriors out of a jam, needing just one out to end the inning.
But Justin Kephart drew a walk before moving to second on a balk. An error on a ground ball by Hewitt allowed Kephart to score and put Hewitt on second.
Alex Iraca singled into center, scoring Hewitt and putting the score at 11-9.
The Warriors got a groundout to end the frame.
Potutschnig and Glendale turned a double play of their own in the top of the sixth, but failed to score any runs in the bottom half of the frame to pad the lead.
The Glendale hurler was able to get the Warriors to swing at several high pitches in the inning, something that was the key to his good innings in the final three frames.
"Generally, I don't like the ball up," said Klezek. "I'd rather see good tilt on the baseball down in the zone. But it is what it is. If they are going to go for it, he was going to use it, and that's what ended up happening.
"I can't say anything bad about what he did, other than throwing a good number of pitches. He maybe threw one curve ball all game. He was just trying to locate fastballs. He did enough to get us a W. It's a big one for Glendale, that's for sure."
"Our hitting right now is not going to scare anyone," Good said. "We have been preaching not to swing at bad pitches. Balls aren't going to be hit if it's a bad pitch. It's the high pitch that is killing us right now. Teams are going to figure us out and just go after that."
West Branch had one final shot to tie it in the top of the seventh. Myers had a one-out single then moved to second on an error. He came home on another error, cutting the lead to 11-10 and putting runners on first and second with one out.
But Potutschnig got a timely pop up to short that was ruled an infield fly and a flyout to center to end the game.
He finished the game with five strikeouts to earn his first win of the season.
"I went away from my gameplan there," Klezek said. "He wasn't going to let me take him out. I usually have a pretty strict pitch count, but I didn't want to look at his face when I went out to take the ball from him. I've been in that situation myself, and no one likes to do it.
"He said he was strong and he felt good. I told him if he was going to finish it, to hurry up and do it, and he did."
Glendale was led by Kimberly and Kephart, who each had two hits and scored two runs. Iraca also had two hits, while Hewitt scored two runs. Schultz had two RBIs.
The Vikings improved to 2-2 overall, 2-0 in the Moshannon Valley League and 1-2 in the Inter-County Conference. Glendale hosts Williamsburg this afternoon.
Myers was 3-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs scored for the Warriors. Thomas and McGonigal each had two hits, while Speigle had two RBIs. Sanker, Thomas and McGonigal also scored two runs apiece.
West Branch fell to 0-3 overall, 0-1 in the MVL and 0-3 in the ICC. The Warriors travel to Mount Union on Thursday.
"You are going to see a shakeup," said Good. "It's time to wake some of these kids up. Maybe it will scare them a little. But, I hate losing. They hate losing. This team shouldn't be losing. We are too good to do that.
"We are 0-3 right now. This season can be completely righted by the end of this week. If we can get a big win at Mount Union on Thursday, that would be great. That is where it starts."

West Branch-10
Sanker cf 4211, Williams dh 2000, Trude p 0000, English 1b 0000, Speigle ss 2012, Zwick pr 0000, Kerlin rf 4000, Hoover rf 0000, Thomas 1b-p 3221, Wick c 2100, McDowell ph 1000, Myers lf 4232, Hayles 2b 4111, McGonigal 3b 3221. Totals: 29-10-10-8.
M. Kimberly c 3221, Potutschnig p 3110, Kephart 3b 3220, Hewitt ss 3211, Iraca cf 3021, Schultz 1b 3112, Shope rf 4111, Sinclair 2b 4110, Barnhart lf 4111. Totals: 30-11-12-7.
Score by Innings
West Branch 125 100 1-10 10 6
Glendale      403 040 x-11 12 3
Errors-Myers 2, Sanker, Speigle, Wick, N. Kerlin; Iraca, Hewitt, Barnhart. LOB-West Branch 7, Glendale 7. DP-West Branch 1, Glendale 1. 2B-Thomas, Myers, Hayles, McGonigal; M. Kimberly, Sinclair. SF-Thomas. SB-Thomas; Potutschnig, Iraca, Sinclair. HBP-Speigle, McGonigal (by Potutschnig). Balk-Thomas. WP-Potutschnig. PB-Wick.
West Branch: Trude-2 2/3 IP, 7 H, 7 R, 5 ER, 5 BB, 4 SO; Thomas-3 1/3 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO.
Glendale: Potutschnig-7 IP, 10 H, 10 R, 8 ER, 4 BB, 5 SO.
WP-Potutschnig (1-1). LP-Thomas (0-1).

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