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Lackney, Varland Drive Stingers into First Place

WATERLOO, Iowa – Nick Lackney (Minnesota) and Gus Varland (Concordia-St. Paul) combined to allow only two runs in Waterloo Thursday evening, lifting the Willmar Stingers to a 6-2 victory over the Bucks and moving them into a first place spot atop the North Division.

After going 3-1 in the month of July, Lackney pitched 4 2/3 innings. In the fifth, he allowed two runs which were both unearned, before Varland took his spot on the mound. 

Varland finished the day for the Stingers, working through 4 1/3 scoreless innings. He struck out two batters and did not allow a walk in his sixth win of the season.

At the plate, the Stingers were led by Luke Becker (Kentucky) and Danny Rodriguez (Bethune-Cookman). Becker went 3-for-5 and drove in two runs. 

Rodriguez also went 3-for-5, and he drove in three.

Josh Bissonette (Baylor) continued his hit streak to seven games with his first-inning single.

Today's Center for Diagnostic Imaging player of the game was Gus Varland. CDI is your local medical imaging provider. It’s your choice where you go for medical imaging, for MRI, CT, mammograms and pain injections, choose CDI. Visit online at myCDI.com/CentralMN.

Varland's ERA now sits at a league-best 1.42. He is now 6-1 on the year, and has held opponents to a .187 batting average.

The Stingers are now 17-10 in the second half and 35-28 overall. With Mankato's loss to St. Cloud, the Stingers are now tied for first place with the MoonDogs in the second half.

The series continues tomorrow at Riverfront Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. You can listen live for free at WillmarStingers.com. Corey Binger (UN-Omaha) is expected to start on the mound for Willmar.

Tickets for all home games are available online at WillmarStingers.com or by calling the Stingers' ticket office at 320-222-2010

The 2017 Stingers season is presented by Marcus Construction. For more coverage of the Stingers, visit the West Central Tribune online at www.wctrib.com.