Honkers Take Game One
Honkers score nine runs in sixth and seventh inning
Max Stapleton, @Max_stapleton38
Rochester, MINN. – The Huskies kicked off a short road trip in Rochester for game one against Honkers.
Marcus Pointer sent out Mason Burns to start the game for the Huskies, while Andrew Duran got the ball for the Honkers.
The action got started early in Rochester. Jonathan Vastine worked a leadoff walk, followed by a bunt single from JD Rogers. Devin Hurdle then swung at the first pitch he saw in his at bat, popping it to the first baseman in foul territory. Vastine smartly tagged up for third and forced a throwing error from Michael Brown that allowed the Huskies to get on the board first.
Duluth continued to add on in the top of the third. Devin Hurdle once again found himself in an enviable situation: Jeremy Keller on third base, Jonathan Vastine on second. Hurdle hit a high chopper just over the pitcher’s head. While Hurdle was gunned out at first, Keller scored easily to make it a 2-0 ballgame.
The Huskies weren’t done yet. In the top of the fourth Cam Frederick found himself at the plate with two men in scoring position and one out. He laid down a perfect bunt that rolled along the first base line. He was tagged out by the first baseman, but Jared Mettam scored easily to make it a 3-0 game.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Honkers were able to get on the board. With the bases loaded and one out, Kyle Whitaker was hit by a pitch from Manny Casillas to bring in Rochester’s first run of the game.
Tyler Moniz-Witten made his Huskies debut in an extremely tough situation; bases loaded with one away. After striking out Hardy for out two, a survival swing from Brendan O’sullivan saw him hit a ground ball into right field to tie the game. One of the hottest hitters in baseball Dario Gomez came up next. He lined a single into left field to make it a 4-3 game.
In the bottom of the seventh, an error allowed Carson Stevens to reach. He took second on a wild pitch from Jackson Edwards, then the next batter Tyler White laid down a bunt. Jeremy Keller fielded it with a bare hand, but the throw to first sailed into right field and the Honkers added another run. A couple of batters later, Kyle Whitaker blooped an RBI single into left field to make it a 6-3 Rochester lead. Theo Hardy laid down a sacrifice bunt to score another, then Brendan O’Sullivan lined an RBI double down the left field line. Dario Gomez then continued the scoring by hitting an RBI bloop single into left field. At the end of seven innings, the Honkers lead 9-3.
In the top of the ninth, Devin Hurdle walked up to the plate with the bases loaded and nobody out. He swung at the first pitch and grounded it to third. The RBI fielder’s choice was the last run of the game, as the Huskies lost by a score of 9-4.
The Huskies take on the Honkers again in game two tomorrow evening.
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.