Photo taken by Mansoor Ahmad (Mankato MoonDogs)
By: Connor Wachtel
MANKATO, Minn. – The Mankato MoonDogs (11-6) took another game from the Rochester Honkers (5-10), Saturday at ISG Field.
The MoonDogs prevailed to win 8-6 over the Honkers. Matt Higgins (Bellarmine) was named the Hilton Garden Inn Player of the Game following his 4-for-3 evening which featured three RBI, a run scored and a walk.
The Honkers cracked the score column first to make it a 1-0 game on a wild pitch in the second inning.
In the bottom of the third, the MoonDogs tied the game 1-1 when Kole Kaler (Hawaii) singled to the Honkers’ shortstop, who delivered an errant throw to first, allowing Josh Urps (Cal State Fullerton) to score from second.
Austin Garrett (Kansas State) provided the MoonDogs with a lead after blasting his first home of the season to leftfield in the fourth inning. Garrett’s three-run shot put Mankato up 4-1 through four frames.
After the Honkers came within two of the MoonDogs with a solo home run to center in the next half inning, the MoonDogs scored three more times in the fifth and extended their lead to 7-2.
Mankato plated one more run in the sixth before Rochester rallied off four in the eighth. However, the MoonDogs held on to win their 11th game of the season, 8-6. Hits wrapped up 8-5 in favor of the MoonDogs. The Honkers led the errors department, 2-1.
Luke Young (Midland College – Texas) twirled five solid frames for the MoonDogs, Saturday. Young allowed just one hit and two runs (one earned) en route to the win to move to a 2-0 record this season. He walked two and struck out four. Davonte Butler (Cal State Bakersfield) took the mound in the ninth to secure his third save of the summer. Butler struck out the side to secure the win for the home team.
The loss went to Rochester’s Marcus Krupke, who fell to 0-2 as a result, after he pitched four innings allowing four runs (three earned) on three hits. He walked three and struck out two along the way.
The MoonDogs and Honkers rematch Sunday with the first pitch slated for 5:05 p.m. at ISG Field.
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’ 27th 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.