By Connor Wachtel
Mankato, Minn. – The Mankato MoonDogs fell victim to another sweep by the Willmar Stingers on Monday night. The game finished up in a 5-2 score as the Stingers took their 8th straight game from the MoonDogs to continue their undefeated success versus Mankato.
BOX SCORE: Willmar 5, Mankato 2
Scoring started with Mankato getting on the board in the first. Cuba Bess (Grand Canyon) scored the run when Dayton Dooney (Arizona) roped an RBI single.
The MoonDogs held the one-run lead until the fourth and the Stingers jumped out in front with three runs. A single from Chase Stanke (Minnesota) scored Willmar’s first run of the night to even the score. Then over the span of the next two at bats, an error and an infield putout each plated another run for the Stingers to give them a 3-1 lead.
Willmar notched two more insurance runs in the next inning. It came from an RBI double and single, giving the Stingers a 5-1 lead.
The MoonDogs plated one run in response in the fifth. James Gargano (Butler) batted in Sean Ross (Pensacola) to make it a 5-2 deficit for the Dogs. However, that’d be all the offense Mankato had in store for the Stingers on Monday as they ultimately fell to Willmar, 5-2.
For the Dogs, Ross had a solid 2-4 night with a run scored.
The win was awarded to Garrett Rukes (Alabama) after he went six complete innings. He allowed two runs over the span of being hit off six times. He walked one and struck out six. The Stingers closer, Aldo Fernandez (New Mexico State) earned the save for his work in the ninth frame. He was hit off once and struck out two.
For the MoonDogs, the starting arm was Nick Hull (Grand Canyon) who was handed the loss. Hull pitched seven innings, allowed eight hits, five runs (four earned), walked one and struck out four others. It marked his 5th start of the season.
Due up for the Dogs:
Tomorrow the Mankato MoonDogs (19-23) play host to the Bismarck Larks (21-20) at The Frank. Delivering the first pitch will be the MoonDogs starting arm, Brett Newberg (Austin Peay). Newberg will wind and fire at 6:35 p.m. at Franklin Rogers Park in Mankato, Minn.
The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. The 25-year old summer collegiate 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, 225 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG), World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS) and MLB All-Stars Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (MIA). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. For more information, visit www.northwoodsleague.com or download the Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the MoonDogs as your favorite team.