Lehmann’s sac fly lifts Vikings over rival Truckee
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Kevin Lehmann came through again for the Vikings in a critical moment.
Lehmann smacked a sacrifice fly to right field Tuesday, April 24, to bring home Cameron Johnson with the winning run in the seventh inning against rival Truckee at Aces Ballpark in Reno.
Johnson singled to lead off the top of the seventh. He went to third on Bryin Schouten’s single. Johnson was running on the play and made it easily into third base.
Lehmann’s fly ball was just deep enough to get Johnson home. Johnson slid around a late tag attempt by the Truckee catcher for a 2-1 lead.
The two runs were just enough for Vikings starting pitcher Chris Pfister, who shut down Truckee without a rally in the last of the seventh.
“Lehman has been a clutch hitter for us most of the year and he was the right man in the right spot,” said Vikings head coach Starbuck Teevan. “Pfister then came out in the seventh and shut Truckee down.”
After Pfister recorded the final out, the Vikings cleared the dugout and celebrated the victory on the first base line.
Just three days prior, Lehmann smashed a bases loaded double in the bottom of the seventh inning to give the Vikings a walk-off victory over Lowry. That win gave the Vikings a best two-out-of-three series win and a playoff tiebreaker if it becomes necessary after all the results are tallied.
South Tahoe scored its first run in the top of the third to take a brief lead. Lehmann scored on a Pfister single. Truckee tied it in the bottom half.
Pfister tossed his second straight complete game and allowed one earned run on six hits and three walks while striking out four.
“Pfister threw a great game for us,” Teevan said. “He didn’t have his best stuff but made due with what he had. He threw a bunch of strikes and the defense showed up in a big way. Kevin Lehmann made several key plays in the field. And Cameron Johnson has taken over behind the plate and threw out a couple of runners late in the game to kill Truckee’s momentum.”
Lehmann led the offense with two hits. Aaron Johnson, Alex Kasper, Schouten, Cameron Johnson each singled and Peyton Galli walked twice.
The Vikings (14-10, 11-9 3A Northern League) are locked in a tight battle to make the playoffs. They are in fourth place alone behind Churchill (14-4) and Elko (14-4) and third place Truckee (10-7) and ahead of Fernley (9-9), Lowry (8-10), Spring Creek (9-12), Dayton (7-10) and Sparks (0-17).
The top six teams make the playoffs and the Vikings will have a chance to clinch their spot with three games against Fernley starting at 3 p.m. Friday at South Tahoe Middle School. The Vikings will host the Vaqueros in a doubleheader the next day starting at 11 a.m. They finish the regular season Tuesday, May 1, at Dayton.
“It was definitely a big win for us, we still need to get a couple more,” Teevan said. “This league is very competitive and there’s very littler aeration between the top teams and guys fighting for playoff spots. We still have huge games against Fernley and Dayton left. We have to keep working hard.”