Dogs Claw Past Cats For Sweep

(6/19/06) A day after a 10-run outburst, the Mankato MoonDogs reverted to their typical close, low-scoring style of play. Only now, they are beginning to come out on the winning end of those contests.

John Lowe pitched eight shutout innings, and Sean Halton’s third inning RBI single stood up as the only run of the game as the MoonDogs completed a two-game sweep of the Thunder Bay Border Cats with a 1-0 victory Monday night. It was Mankato’s season-high third straight win.

After losing five of their first six one-run games, the MoonDogs have now won three of their last four. The 10 one-run contests are the most of any team in the Northwoods League.

Lowe (2-1) had another great outing for the MoonDogs, with another eight scoreless innings to lower his season ERA to 0.68. He gave up just three hits and struck out four while walking none. Tom Porter pitched the ninth to earn his first save.

The MoonDogs got all the offense they needed in the third inning, when with two outs, Tim Smith singled and stole second base. Halton’s single up the middle scored Smith with the run that moved Mankato to within two games of first place in the Northern Division.

The only serious threat Thunder Bay mounted came in the fifth inning, when Dale Mollenhauer and Cameron Johnson hit back-to-back singles, the first two Border Cats’ hits of the night. But Lowe got out of the jam with a strike out and a ground out to end the inning.