By: Connor Wachtel
Mankato, Minn. — The Mankato MoonDogs completed their first series sweep of the season with a 5-1 win over the Rochester Honkers at Franklin Rogers Park Sunday afternoon.
Mankato is now 9-12 this summer and one of the hottest teams in the Northwoods League with the league’s longest winning streak at six games.
After the Honkers got on the board first with a one-run third, it was all MoonDogs offensively the rest of the afternoon.
Evan Berkey tied the game with one swing in the fourth. Berkey’s first home run, against his 2019 Northwoods League team, was a solo shot and made it a 1-1 game.
Berkey gets around on one for a solo shot in the fourth to tie the game. It was one of two home runs for the MoonDogs Sunday and Berkey’s first of the season. (Image captured by Mansoor Ahmad)
The MoonDogs took the lead in the seventh when Tanner Craig drove in Berkey on an RBI ground out.
Phillips broke the game wide open the eighth with a towering home run to right field that went over the Franklin Rogers Park video board. After that, Phillips took the hill in the ninth and shut the door with a perfect final frame in relief.
The MoonDogs were dominant to complete the weekend sweep, outhitting the Honkers 9-2. Both sides were solid in the field with zero errors.
MoonDogs right hander Jake McMahill pitched five innings for the no decision in his fifth start of the season. He was hit off twice and allowed a run while walking five and striking out six. Nolan Pender came in for the sixth and got the win. Pender walked one and struck out another. AJ Wood made his MoonDogs debut Sunday and earned a hold in the process. He pitched the seventh and eighth innings and struck out a trio of Honkers.
Rochester’s Garrett Kellogg-Clarke got the loss. He pitched the Honkers sixth, seventh and eighth innings. He allowed five hits, four runs, one walk and had a pair of strikeouts along the way.
For today’s box score click HERE.
Tomorrow, the MoonDogs (9-12) are heading to St. Cloud, Minn., to take on the Rox (9-9). First pitch at Joe Faber Field is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
The Mankato MoonDogs 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’ 26th 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 230 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 (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and MLB All-Star Jordan Zimmermann (DET). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.mankatomoondogs.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the MoonDogs as your favorite team.