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Published On: July 11th, 2021

Photo taken by Mansoor Ahmad/Mankato MoonDogs

By: Connor Wachtel

MANKATO, Minn. – The Mankato MoonDogs (28-11) struggled to get their offense going against the Eau Claire Express (16-22) and went on to drop their second straight contest 2-0, Sunday at ISG Field. 


The Express plated both runs with one swing of the bat from Carter Graham (Stanford), who hit a one-hop double off the wall in left, in the top of the eighth inning.  


The Express eventually held on to win 2-0 and handed the MoonDogs their first consecutive loss since June 8 after Nick Herold (Winona State) shut the door in the ninth for his fourth save of the season. 


In a relief work appearance, Ross Carver (Dallas Baptist) earned the win for entering to pitch in the seventh before taking on a lead in the eighth and working through the bottom half of the inning for one and two-thirds scoreless innings of relief work. He allowed just one hit and struck out three en route to earning his first win of the summer to move to a 1-0 record. 


On the hill making his seventh start of the summer was Northwoods League All-Star selection Blake Reilly (Grand Canyon). Reilly proved his worth, working into the eighth before Graham’s RBI double forced Reilly out of the game. All in all, Reilly pitched 7.2 innings allowing just two runs and six hits. He walked three and struck out four while falling to 1-1. 


Up next, the Mankato MoonDogs play host to the Duluth Huskies (15-23) in their first meet-up of 2021, Monday and Tuesday at 6:35 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’ 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 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.