Mankato, Minn. – Ryan Demmin picked up a depleted MoonDog bullpen by throwing a complete game, three-hit gem to give Mankato a 2-1 win over Duluth Wednesday evening at Franklin Rogers Park.
Demmin (UW-Oshkosh) lived up to his all-star billing, as he allowed just a single unearned run in the first inning and struck out a season-high eight batters. After the first inning Demmin faced just four batters over the minimum and allowed two hits in earning his fifth win (5-3) of the year while lowering his ERA to 1.19.
Both teams posted a run in the first inning, as Duluth (17-29, 4-9) got on the board first. Jerico Weitzel (Florida) started the game by reaching on a throwing error by Cody Fick (Evansville). After a sac bunt moved Weitzel to third, a Nathan Melendres (Miami) line drive sacrifice fly to center brought home what would be the only Husky run.
The MoonDogs (30-16, 7-6) got the run right back in the bottom of the inning. KC Serna (Oregon) led off the inning with a single and moved to second when Melendres misplaced the hop. After an AJ Pettersen (Minnesota) sacrifice bunt, Tony Strazzara (San Diego) brought Serna home with a single up the middle to tie the game.
The MoonDogs tallied the winning run in the fifth inning, as Taylor Black (Kentucky) started the frame with a single to center. After a Pettersen infield single to short, Danny Miller (Minnesota State) punched a ground ball through the left side to give the MoonDogs a 2-1 lead and winning run.
The MoonDogs tripled the Husky hit total 9-3, as Miller and Ryan Durant (Iowa) both had two hits to pace the MoonDogs.
Drew Smyly (Arkansas) matched Demmin throughout the night, but came out of the contest the tough-luck loser. Smyly threw seven innings, allowing eight hits and striking out seven to fall to 0-2.
Duluth will head back home to face Brainerd at Wade Stadium. The MoonDogs will also head north, visiting Knute Nelson Memorial Park and the Alexandria Beetles. Both games will start at 7:05 p.m.