Stryffeler Shines in Game One Win Over Larks

Stryffeler Shines in Game One Win Over Larks

(Bismarck, N.D.) – The Rochester Honkers (11-16 Second Half, 27-35 Overall) won game one of a doubleheader against the Bismarck Larks (12-17, 28-36) Sunday afternoon at Bismarck Municipal Ballpark. The game was resumed after being suspended on Saturday due to rain. Michael Stryffeler (Lake Erie) started on the mound for the Honkers when the game resumed in the second inning and pitched his best game of the season, striking out a season-high 11 batters. Rochester scored 12 unanswered runs, including a five-run sixth inning.

The Larks held a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning when the game resumed. Ryan Anderson (UC Davis) gave Bismarck the lead with one out in the bottom of the first inning with a RBI single to center field, scoring Wyatt Ulrich (St. John’s) from second base.

Tom Imholte (Minnesota State-Mankato), in his first game as a Honker, reached on a Bismarck error to start the top of the fifth inning. Three batters later, he scored on a RBI double to left field by Morgan McCullough (Oregon). McCullough extended his on-base streak to a team-high 34 games.

Rochester jumped out to a 6-1 lead by scoring five runs on one hit in the top of the sixth inning. The Honkers drew six walks and sent 10 batters to the plate in the inning.

Kenyon Yovan (Oregon) led the charge for the Honkers in the seventh inning with a leadoff double to left field. Four batters later, Griffin Neuer (Bellarmine) extended the Rochester lead to 8-1 with a two-run single to right field with two outs.

The Honkers piled on four more runs in the final two innings, including solo home runs to left field by Ryan Fitzpatrick (UC Irvine) and Michael Michalak (Des Moines Area CC). Fitzpatrick has now hit 10 home runs this season, the third Honker to hit that mark. No other team has more than one player with 10 or more home runs.

Stryffeler earned the win (1-4) for the Honkers. He pitched seven scoreless innings, giving up only three hits while striking out 11 batters and walking one.

Jake Johnson (Mary) took the loss (0-1) for the Larks. He gave up four runs on one hit without getting an out while and walked three batters.

Drew Slade (Ripon) will start game two of the doubleheader for the Honkers. Slade is 4-2 in seven starts the season with 31 strikeouts in 54 innings. Frank Greco (Benedictine) is scheduled to pitch for the Larks. Greco is 2-4 this season with a 7.96 ERA. First pitch from Bismarck Municipal Ballpark is 5:05 p.m. It will be a seven-inning game.

The next home game for the Flock will be a doubleheader on Monday, August 7, against the Thunder Bay Border Cats. It will be One Hit Wonder Night with Minnesota 97.5 FM. If the Honkers hold Thunder Bay to one hit in game one, then someone will win $10,000. Anyone 18 years or older may sign to win for free at the Fan Center. First pitch of game one starts at 6:05 p.m. Gates open at 5:00 p.m. Game two will begin 30 minutes after the completion of game one.

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The Rochester Honkers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 23-year-old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 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, more than 180 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including two-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champion Ben Zobrist (CHC) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM) and Lucas Duda (NYM).  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 Honkers as your favorite team.