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Valencia baseball stays in hunt with win

Posted: May 7, 2014 10:29 p.m.
Updated: May 7, 2014 10:29 p.m.
 

This is Valencia Vikings baseball.

And when Valencia is at the top of its game, it can get ugly for opponents in a hurry.

The Vikings put their potent offensive potential on display by hitting four home runs on Wednesday on the way to a 14-1 blasting of the Canyon Cowboys at Valencia High School.

It was a needed win for Valencia, as every game will be down the home stretch of Foothill League play. In this case, it kept the Vikings (14-9 overall, 8-4 Foothill League) within a game of first place in league with three games left to play.

“We’re hitting the ball good,” said Valencia senior Keston Hiura. “We came in here knowing we had to win out to put us in good position, so I just locked in before the game.”

Hiura reached base all five times at the plate, finished 4-for-4 and cranked two more home runs to increase his league-leading total to 11 on the season.

Chad Bible and Kyle Fleischman also hit home runs for Valencia, which wasted little time jumping on the struggling Cowboys (8-14-1, 3-9).

“I think it is contagious,” said Fleischman, who hit his first homer of the season. “It all starts with our leadoff guy (Hiura). He always gets on base.”

The Vikings did all their scoring in the first three innings, with two in the first and six apiece in the second and third.

It was a 14-0 Valencia lead until Canyon’s Mike Santillan scored on Jaegar Wunderlich’s groundout in the sixth inning for the Cowboys’ only run of the game.

Kevin Chandler started for the Vikings and earned the win after throwing four scoreless innings. He gave up a hit and four walks along the way.

But Wednesday’s game was all about the bats for the Vikings, who piled up 17 hits spread out between nine different players.

Hiura and Bible both hit solo shots to get things started in the first inning.

Things really started to unravel for Canyon and starting pitcher Jon Dicey in the second inning following Fleischman’s two-run blast.

A total of seven straight Valencia hitters reached base in the inning, all with two outs.

Bible, Devin Davis and Kaden Betsch all drove in runs in the frame.

It was more of the same in the third inning, which included Hiura’s two-run homer, Hunter Holland’s two-RBI triple and RBI singles by Scott Ogrin and Jake Silva.

And Canyon was unable to respond despite four hits and eight walks.

That’s been the story of the Cowboys’ disappointing league season.

“We’re trying to knock some teams out of playoff position, and to do that we have to start swinging the bats,” said Canyon senior Chris Jenkins.

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