MoonDogs Sweep Stingers with 5-3 Win in Willmar
By: Connor Wachtel
WILLMAR, Minn. – The Mankato MoonDogs (40-21) grabbed an early five-run lead en route to defeating the Willmar Stingers (29-35) 5-3, Sunday at Bill Taunton Stadium.
The MoonDogs scored five answered runs with one in the opening frame, three in third and another in the fourth.
Luke Beckstein (Northeastern) got the Dogs in the score column first in the opening frame with a sacrifice fly that allowed Will Hanafan (Creighton) to score from third. In the third inning, Austin Garrett (Kansas State) crossed the plate by scoring on a wild pitch before Matt Higgins (Bellarmine) recorded an RBI via a bases-loaded walk and Jack Costello (San Diego) doubled to left to score Beckstein, making it a 4-0 game. Adrian Torres (Grand Canyon) homered to right in the fourth to conclude the MoonDogs scoring at a 5-0 lead.
The Stingers scored twice in the fifth inning and one more time in the ninth but couldn’t plate any others to change the outcome as the MoonDogs prevailed 5-3 to sweep the Willmar Stingers.
Mankato outhit Willmar 10-7 in the contest while both sides had one error in the game.
The win went to Mankato’s Simon Gregersen (Des Moines Area CC) after he pitched five complete frames in his first outing with the MoonDogs. He allowed five hits and two runs while walking two and retiring nine on strikes. In relief, John Lundgren (North Alabama) shut things down the rest of the way to secure his first save of the summer. Lundgren gave up two hits and a run while striking out three.
The MoonDogs return to Mankato Monday to play a weather-improvised doubleheader vs. the Bismarck Larks at ISG Field. The evening will begin with the MoonDogs grasping a 1-0 lead over the Larks in the top of the second inning of a nine-inning game. Following the conclusion of the game that began in Bismarck prior to a July 5 rainout, the MoonDogs will wrap up the improvised doubleheader with Monday’s originally scheduled contest adjusted to a seven-inning affair starting 30 minutes after game one.
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.