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Duluth Huskies Weekly Recap: Week 3

Tough week for the Huskies

Ryne Ryskoski

Duluth, Minn — This last week was a tough one for the Huskies as they went 1-7 in their 7-day homestand to drop to an overall record of 7-11.

Last Friday was the first game of Duluth’s homestand which would go down as an 8-5 loss to the Willmar Stingers. The back and forth ballgame started quickly as the Stingers scored a run in the 1st inning off of a sac fly from John Trousdale that scored Sam Baier to make it 1-0 in the Stingers’ favor. Ramon Enriquez and Nic Kent managed to score two runs in the 3rd inning to give the Huskies a 2-1 lead. In the 4th inning, Willmar was able to put up 2 more runs to regain the lead 3-2. Scoring stalled until the 6th inning when the Stingers pushed their lead to 6-2 after scoring 3 runs with two outs. Back to back triples in the 8th inning for Willmar allowed them to score two more runs, making it 8-3. The Huskies managed to cut the deficit to 3 after a Nic Kent two-RBI single, but that would end the scoring at 8-5.

The Huskies lone win of the homestand came against the Stingers last Saturday night. All 3 of Duluth’s runs came before the 6th inning. Nic Kent scored on a throwing error, and Dexter Swims along with Noah Marcelo hitting RBI singles made it 3-0 Huskies. Dane Morrow continued to throw well, as he logged 7 scoreless innings while striking out 8. Morrow is currently 2nd in the Northwoods League in ERA with 0.53. He also has allowed no extra-base hits thus far. Mason Bryant, who got the save and struck out 5 over 2 IP, allowed 2 Stingers runs after a balk and two passed balls, but shut down Willmar when he struck out the side in the 9th.

The Huskies appeared to have locked down their 2nd straight win last Sunday after two hours’ worth of rain delays when they possessed an 8-2 lead heading into the top of the 8th inning. But the Loggers started rallying when they got their first four batters on base via a walk, a single, a double, and a hit by pitch. TJ Byrd would be the one to score on a Tony Bullard RBI double to make it 8-3. Then Ryan Holgate hit a ground rule double which scored 2 more cutting the Huskies lead to 3. Holgate and Brady Allen continued the barrage of runs when they came home in the next plate appearance on a passed ball and a balk  to make it 8-7 Duluth. A 2-run triple from Cody Jefferis would give La Crosse the lead, and then a sac fly from Brett Hawkins gave the Loggers a 10-8 lead and the win.

The Loggers got off to a hot start the next evening when they put up 5 runs in their half of the 1st inning. A balk and two straight RBI singles plated the first 3 runs, and then an error allowed 2 more to score making it 5-0 La Crosse. James Free II made his Huskies debut and went 2-3 and was the first run of the night for the Huskies to make it 5-1. Duluth scored again in the 6th when Aaron Greenfield scored and Milan Walla combined drive in 3. The Loggers put up 3 runs in the 9th, starting with a Kyson Donahue RBI triple, giving La Crosse an 8-5 lead that would prove too difficult for Duluth to recover from.

Both teams got off to quick starts on Tuesday as the score was 4-3 Bucks after just the first two full innings. Waterloo resumed the scoring in the top of the 4th inning after Patrick Ferguson found the left-center gap to bring in 2 Bucks, stretching the Bucks lead to 3. On a day where the Huskies had no more pitchers to bring in, Milan Walla proved to be a solid stopgap as he threw 4 innings while giving up just 1 run on 1 hit. Lance Ford also came in to pitch the top of the 9th and managed to strike out the side. The Huskies would go quietly in the bottom of the 9th though as Jimmy Smiley set them down in order. Smiley threw 4 no-hit innings in relief and allowed just one walk.

Wednesday was the first doubleheader of the season for Duluth, and Waterloo would win both games by a combined score of 23-7. Duluth scored two runs in the first inning of game one, but the Bucks would manage to score 10 runs by the end of the 5th inning thanks in part to several extra-base hits to all parts of the field with runners in scoring position, and a couple errors. James Free II led off the bottom of the 6th with a double off the center field wall and would be brought home on a Dexter Swims RBI single to center field. Milan Walla continued the scoring with an RBI double, bringing home Tyler Lozano to make it 10-4 with Waterloo still in front. The Bucks scored two more runs over the 8th and 9th innings to secure a 13-4 win in game one of the doubleheader.

Game two was a rough start for Duluth as Waterloo jumped out to an early 4-0 lead after 2 innings. However, the Huskies did turn a brilliant 3-1-5 triple play in the 2nd inning to leave the bases loaded. Bennett Hostetler continued to be the Huskies kryptonite, as he logged two more RBI’s after scoring Greg Anderberg and Bryce Wooldridge to extend their lead to 6-0. In the 4th inning, Ramon Enriquez drove a 1-0 fastball over the wall in straightaway center field to give the Huskies their first run of the ballgame. The Huskies would manage to load the bases with two outs, but Bucks Right Fielder Cole Brooks would make a great sliding catch to leave the score at 6-1. Waterloo got to 10 runs once again in the top of the 8th inning after Patrick Ferguson and Hostetler both got RBI’s after hitting a double and a single, respectively. Wade Meckler came across home in the bottom of the 9th on a Lance Ford groundout to get Duluth their 3rd run of the night, but that would be it as the Huskies lost by a score of 10-3.

Despite the final score of 8-0, yesterday’s game was a pitcher’s duel for most of the game as Troy Newell and Tyler Miller both tossed 4 hitless innings to start the night. The Bucks found the scoreboard in the top of the 4th inning when Bennett Hostetler scored on a Lorenzo Elion sac fly to give Waterloo a 1-0 lead. Hostetler led off the inning with a single, bringing his season average to .667. Cole Brooks and Bryce Wooldridge came across in the top of the 5th on a Huskies throwing error with 2 outs to extend Waterloo’s lead to 3. Ramon Enriquez managed to sneak a one-hop ground ball past the 3rd baseman to break up Miller’s no-hit bid in the 5th inning. The Bucks began the top of the 9th with three straight singles which then led to a 2 run single from Jake Gitter, stretching Waterloo’s lead to 5-0.  Then a Lorenzo Elian triple to right field, and a 3rd Huskies error would make it 8-0 Bucks, the final score.

The Huskies begin a 3-game road trip tonight against the Eau Claire Express at 7:05 pm. The team will return home on Monday night against the St. Cloud Rox. Until then stay connected with the Huskies on our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Also follow @JoeChatzHuskies and @XtraInningsWithRyne on Facebook for in-depth news and info about the Huskies.

 

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The Duluth Huskies are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Now in its 26th anniversary season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 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 200 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.