Mankato, MN.- It was the last game before the all-star break, and the Huskies were teetering on the brink of dropping below .500 for the first time since June 3rd, when they held a record of 2-3. Duluth came in with a record of 22-22 overall and 3-8 in the second half.
The Huskies were playing the Mankato MoonDogs for the 4th time in a row, looking to split a four-game home and home series. Mankato came in 24-21 overall and 5-6 in the second half.
Mankato sent southpaw John Lundgren to the mound, who was facing the Huskies for the third time in the 2022 season. In his previous two appearances, he allowed one earned run in three innings pitched.
Duluth turned to Alex Potter for only his second start of the season. In his Huskies debut on July 11 against the St Cloud Rox, he went five strong innings, only allowing one earned run against the best team in the Great Plains Division.
Both pitchers came out strong, putting up zeroes in the first inning. Potter escaped a runner at 3rd and less than two outs jam, getting two foul outs from all-star Sean Ross and Mankato clean-up hitter John Newman Jr.
This trend would continue through the first four full innings. Both starters pitched through traffick stranding a total of seven runners. Then finally, in the 5th inning, the Huskies broke the damn and began a flood of run production.
The fifth inning began with five straight singles, three of which scored runs off the bats of Peyton Powell, Kristian Campbell, and Eddy Rosario. Ambren Voitik and Colin Burgess followed with a sacrifice fly and an RBI groundout, respectively. The Huskies were up 5-0 with their starter Alex Potter dealing and the Mankato starter John Lundgren knocked out of the game.
Potter came out for the 5th inning and maintained that momentum, pitching a shutdown inning and keeping the score at 5-0.
In the sixth, the Huskies added on. Peyton Powell came through with his fourth hit of the day in as many at-bats, collecting his second RBI and making the game 6-0.
Before the game, Huskies’ Manager Marcus Pointer put Powell in the #2 spot of the order for the first time all year, hoping to mix things up and instigate rallies, and that move was paying immediate and incredible dividends.
Potter was removed in the sixth inning after pitching through the hot July Minnesota weather and giving the Huskies one of their best starts of the year.
Manny Casillas entered in the game in his stead and pitched a scoreless sixth inning, keeping the score at 6-0. He would pitch another two scoreless frames, not allowing a hit, with only two walks and a hit batsman as blemishes on an otherwise stellar line.
The ninth was a proverbial victory lap for the Huskies. Peyton Powell scored Duluth’s seventh run on a wild pitch and finished the day with an incredible 5-5 line.
Nolan Lebamoff came in to finish things off in the ninth and did so quickly and efficiently. A 1-2-3 inning ended the game and gave the Huskies a 7-0 win.
The Huskies go into the all-star break with a 23-22 overall record and a 4-8 record in the second half. The MoonDogs fall to 24-22 overall and 5-7 in the second half.
The Huskies won their last game before the all-star break. After three days off, they will head to Waterloo for a Thursday night matchup in Iowa against the Waterloo Bucks.
The Duluth Huskies are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Having completed its’ 28th 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, over 280 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time All-Star and 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner Curtis Granderson, three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (NYM), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and 2019/2021 Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and 2021 All-Star, MLB Gold Glove winner and 2019 Second Team All-MLB shortstop Marcus Semien (TEX). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. League games are viewable live at watchnwl.com. 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.