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MoonDogs Come Out on Top in Slugfest with Thunder Bay

MANKATO, MINN. – While the weather was blistering hot on Tuesday afternoon, the Mankato MoonDogs’ bats were even hotter, as they got the upper hand of the Thunder Bay Border Cats in a 17-10 shootout at Franklin Rogers Park.

The MoonDogs offensive outburst was bolstered by an 11 run fifth inning that saw fifteen batters at the plate combine for eight hits.  John Michael Twichell (UT- Arlington) accounted for four of the innings runs when he cranked a grand slam, after seven runs were already scored in the frame.  Twichell added another home run in the seventh inning, finishing his day two-for-three with five RBIs.

The wild game concluded a miserable series for both teams’ pitching corps, as the MoonDogs and Border Cats combined for 27 runs, 27 hits, 18 walks and a whopping 361 pitches thrown on the game.  The MoonDogs went through six different pitchers, three during a six-run eighth inning for the Border Cats.

Mankato starting pitcher Sam Clay (Georgia Tech) started his day throwing three innings of shutout ball before getting in a little trouble in the fourth.  His day came to an end after walking four Thunder Bay batters, bringing in their first run.  Bryan Bonnell (UNLV, 2-1) came in for relief of Clay and picks up the win after throwing one and two-third innings giving up three hits but no runs.

Hitting was found everywhere in the MoonDogs’ order but especially on the back end, as the six-through-eight hitters- Matt Wollenzin (Austin Peay St. U), Matt Jones (Southern Illinois), and Jonathan Rodriguez (Oklahoma City)- each picked up three hits on the day.  Wollenzin picked up a solo home run in the seventh inning and finished the two-game set with five hits and four RBIs.

Border Cat Jacob Rogers also hit a grand slam in the eighth inning, finishing hitting three-for-five with four RBIs.

The MoonDogs emerge from the chaos of the last two games with a split and their first victory against Thunder Bay this season.  Moving forward Mankato will enjoy a rare off-day in the Northwoods League and will continue their homestand with two games against the St. Cloud Rox.  Thursday night is the MoonDogs’ Wine, Women, and Baseball event presented by Save Mor Jewelry, Chankaska Creek Ranch & Winery and Minnesota 93. First pitch is scheduled for 705 p.m.

Season and single game tickets are on sale at the MoonDogs office located at 1221 Caledonia Street in Mankato.  For more information visit the website at www.mankatomoondogs.com or call the office a 507-625-7047.