Waterloo tallied four hits in a 5-0 loss to Mankato, marking the first shutout defeat of the season.
By: Matt Gruemmer, Waterloo Bucks
MANKATO, Minn. – The Waterloo Bucks (8-4) fell by a final 5-0 decision to the Mankato MoonDogs (4-8) Saturday evening at Franklin Rogers Park as the offense struggled to compile just four hits. Eric Veglahn (1-1) (St. Thomas) took the loss on the mound after allowing all five MoonDog runs to cross in three innings of work. The Mankato offense pounded out four runs on four hits, including a two-run homerun, to widen the gap in the fourth frame. Zach McKinstry (Central Michigan) tallied a double in the loss to move his hitting streak to four games for Waterloo while Nick Veale (Minnesota St.-Mankato) and Landon Busch (South Dakota St.) collectively provided five innings of shutout ball out of the bullpen. The loss marked both the first road loss for the Bucks and the first victory for Mankato over Waterloo on the season.
Strong pitching from Veglahn and Mankato starter Grant Hamilton (Oklahoma City) storied the first two innings as the two hurlers surrendered no hits and no walks to the opening batters in the lineups. Mankato plated their first run to go up 1-0 in the bottom of the third when Kevin Hall (North Alabama) scored on an errant ball thrown into centerfield intended to pickoff a stolen baserunner.
The Moondogs opened the game up to a 5-0 advantage by piling up four runs on four hits in the fourth frame. After drawing a leadoff walk, Boomer Synek (Evansville) was brought in on a Paul Panaccione (Grand Canyon) two-run homerun into left field. Brinn Bell (St. Ambrose) and Kaden Moore (Indiana St.) each scored as well in the frame after both batters collected base-hits.
Veglahn (0-1) ended the night in the bottom of the fourth with no outs and a man on first base. The left-handed starter for Waterloo surrendered five runs on four hits while walking two and striking out four.
Hamilton (1-0) took the win for Mankato in his first start of the year after shutting down the Bucks for two hits and eight punch-outs over 6 1/3 innings of work.
Nick Veale entered for the Bucks to get out of the jam in the fourth and recorded all three outs with strikeouts in the frame. In his fourth appearance out of the bullpen on the year, the reliever tossed three scoreless innings and tallied two hits, one walk and four strikeouts.
The Bucks sent Busch to the mound to preserve the deficit in the late-goings. The right-hander pitched through two shutout innings in the seventh and eighth while allowing two hits and striking out a pair of MoonDogs. Busch was aided in his outing by Joseph Shepherd (Murray St. College) in the bottom of the seventh when Shepherd gunned down a runner heading to the plate from left field (7-2) for the inning’s final putout.
With just two hits heading into the top of the ninth, the Bucks tallied two more, but were unable to cross the plate in the 5-0 defeat.
The Bucks travel to Eau Claire for a 5:05 p.m. meeting on Sunday to open a two-game series with the Express. Waterloo returns home June 9 to face Thunder Bay. Next Tuesday marks a Two For Tuesday promotion. Follow the Bucks on Facebook or their email newsletter for a buy one ticket get one FREE offer for Tuesday home games. One lucky fan will win a pair of Minnesota Twins tickets given away at every Tuesday home game.
Tickets are available at waterloobucks.com. You can also visit the Bucks Ticket Office at Riverfront Stadium or call 319-232-5633.
Bucks games are broadcast live on waterloobucks.com.
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The Waterloo Bucks are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 22nd season of summer collegiate baseball in 2015, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 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 120 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (OAK). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League Website. For more information, visit www.waterloobucks.com.