MoonDogs Get Back into Win Column Hosting Stingers
Written by Connor Wachtel
MANKATO, Minn. – The Mankato MoonDogs took down the Willmar Stingers, 5-2, to secure a split of a two-game home-and-home Northwoods League baseball series at ISG Field, Wednesday night.
Coming out on top, the MoonDogs got back to even with a 12-12 record while handing the Stingers a loss, dropping them to 13-11.
The MoonDogs opened the scoring in Wednesday’s tilt during the second inning when Boston Merila (Minnesota) hit a high chopper near the second base bag that leaped over the middle infielders on a bounce and into centerfield to score a pair of runs. After two innings of play at ISG Field, the MoonDogs led the Stingers 2-0.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Derek Shoen (UMary) launched his third home run of the season the opposite way, down the rightfield line and off the bottom-right corner of the videoboard at ISG Field. The round-tripper scored the MoonDogs’ third run of the game to make it 5-3 and stood as the game-winning run for Mankato.
After Shoen’s blast to right in the fourth, Both sides traded a run in the fifth before the Stingers came within two of the MoonDogs by scoring their second run in the top of the sixth to make it 4-2.
The seventh inning saw the MoonDogs take a 5-2 lead when Sean Ross (Indiana State) scored from third on a single to center by Justin DeCriscio (San Diego).
After entering the game to pitch in the eighth, Luke Young (Midland College – TX) locked it down to secure a two-inning save, his first of the season, as well as a 5-2 MoonDogs’ victory.
Starting on the mound for the MoonDogs, Drew Buhr (Bellarmine) pitched six complete innings to improve to 2-0 on the season. Buhr surrendered a pair of runs on five hits, walked one and struck out eight opposing hitters. In relief, Thomas Bruss (Augustana) pitched a scoreless seventh to pick up a hold out of the pen.
Next on the docket, the MoonDogs play host to the LaCrosse Loggers at ISG Field, Thursday night at 6:35 p.m. Corey Sanchez (San Jose State) is listed as the probable pitcher for Mankato.
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’ 28th 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 280 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 (NYM), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist 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 2021 All-Star, MLB Gold Glove winner and 2019 Second Team All-MLB shortstop Marcus Semien (TEX). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. League games are viewable live at watchnwl.com. 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.