The Duluth Huskies (11-11) lost to the Mankato MoonDogs (13-7) by a score of 12-0 in a one-sided affair on Friday to wrap up a 10-game homestand.
Garrett Brown (4-5) gave up five runs in the first two innings, which set the tone for a Huskies team that could not catch a break. Its bullpen didn’t fare much better. Jacob Trujillo and Austin Truso gave up six runs in the ninth on four hits and three walks. Colin Baumgard was the lone bright spot in the Huskies box score on Friday, pitching four strong innings of one-run long relief, surrendering just one hit.
Opposite Brown, Mankato starter Nicholas Belzer (5-1) of Minnesota State-Mankato pitched six scoreless innings, followed by Jimmy Ward and Addison Reed coming out of the MoonDogs bullpen to leave the Huskies scoreless on the day.
Mankato started the day firing on all cylinders, tagging Brown for three in the first. Logan Busch’s double, Ethan Valdez’s single, and Ryan Kreidler’s sacrifice fly brought in the runs. Valdez finished with two hits, a run scored and three driven in.
In the second, Mankato sent seven men to the plate, and with runners at the corners, right fielder Jake Shepski and first baseman Kyle Cuellar hit back-to-back singles to drive in Brett Newberg and Daniel Amaral to give their team a 5-0 lead.
Brown’s last two innings of work were solid, but he was chased after four, giving way to Colin Baumgard, who gave up one run through the eighth. It came on a one-out double by center fielder Daniel Amaral to score Jake Ortega.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Huskies managed to load the bases, but Kyle Hubbuch popped out to Kreidler at shortstop to end the threat. That would be the most successful inning the Huskies would have all night. Jimmy Ward and Addison Reed continued the shutout through the night after Belzar’s bases-loaded jam in the sixth.
The ninth inning was a microcosm of the night’s action as the MoonDogs tacked on six more runs off Jacob Trujillo and Austin Truso. Ethan Valdez brought in two on a double, advanced to third on Alec Abercrombie’s second error of the night, and scored when Ryan Kreidler singled him in. Jake Ortega joined the on-base party and scored along with Brett Newberg on a routine fly ball to center fielder Rudy Karre with two outs that was lost in the lights to drag the inning on another batter and push Mankato’s run total to 12 on the day.
The Huskies start a weekend road trip tomorrow by playing the second half of a rain-out against the Rox in St. Cloud before four games in four days, ending with two against Rochester. Action starts at 5:05 p.m. on Saturday.