Huskies Maintain One Game Lead in Tight North Division
The Duluth offense pounded out 16 hits as the Huskies completed a doubleheader sweep of Willmar with an 11-2 victory Wednesday night at Wade Stadium.
Duluth never trailed in the game, scoring five times in the first inning. Augie Isaacson drew a leadoff walk and stole second base before scoring on a single by Nick Sogard. A fielding error allowed Sogard to score before John Lagattuta laced a two-run double to the gap in right-center field. Tony Monroy brought in Lagattuta with an RBI sacrifice groundout.
The Stingers got on the scoreboard with an unearned run in the top of the third when Jaxon Hallmark reached on an error and came home on a single by John Trousdale. Duluth responded with two runs in the home half as Trevin Esquerra led off with a double and Monroy followed with a single. Both were driven in by Sogard with two outs.
The two teams traded runs in the fifth inning. Caleb Ricca tripled with one away in the top half and scored on a sacrifice fly from Tyler Reichenborn. Monroy led off the home half with a single, stole second base and scored when Kyle Jacobsen singled on a 3-1 count.
Duluth struck for three unearned runs in the bottom of the eighth inning. A pair of two-out fielding errors and a single loaded the bases for Esquerra who drove in two runs with a base hit. Monroy followed with a single to plate Julian Escobedo, giving the hosts a nine-run cushion.
Monroy went 4-5 with two runs driven in and two runs scored while Lagattuta turned in three hits and scored twice. Sogard led the team with a season-high three RBIs and six different Huskies finished with multiple hits. Zac Shoemaker allowed one earned run in six innings of work and struck out two en route to his second win of the season. Parker Hanson, Colan Treml and Monroy combined to throw three shutout innings of relief.
The Huskies improve to 21-9 while Willmar drops to 17-13 on the season. Duluth maintains a one-game lead over both Bismarck and Mankato with six games remaining in the first half of the season. The Huskies open a two-game series against Thunder Bay on Thursday at Wade Stadium with first pitch set for 6:35 pm.
The Duluth Huskies are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Entering its 25th anniversary season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 190 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (TOR). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.duluthhuskies.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Huskies as your favorite team