Waterloo Bucks (37-23, 14-12) Dylan Gotto and Logan Jones carved up the Mankato MoonDogs (38-20, 13-10) in a 5-1 win on Thursday evening, combining for 7.0 shutout innings. Gotto scattered five hits and a walk while striking out four over 4.1 innings of work in his first start of the summer, throwing strikes at a 70.7% rate. Jones earned his first win of the summer in his final outing with 2.2 scoreless, punching out four and allowing just two hits and a walk. Eight of nine Bucks starters had at least one hit, led by Josh Kasevich (3-for-5), Jalen Smith (2-for-4, BB, R, 2B, 2 RBI) and Max Jung-Goldberg (2-for-4, HBP, R) providing multi-hit performances.
Smith and Kasevich rapped back-to-back one-out singles in the first inning before Johnny Tincher (1-for-4, BB, 2B, RBI) knocked in Smith with a double down the left field line. The Bucks added two more in the second as Jacob Ruley (1-for-3, BB) and Sam Biller (1-for-3, BB, RBI, SB) singled to open the frame before Smith belted a two-run, two-out double after a pair of fielder’s choices.
Waterloo made it 4-0 in the fifth as Jung-Goldberg was hit by a pitch and came around to score on a bases-loaded walk issued to Biller.
Mankato tallied their lone run in the eighth, but the Bucks struck back in the home half as Chris Seng (1-for-5, 2 R) lifted a one-out single down the right field line and scored a bit later on a wild pitch.
Zach Button closed things out with a scoreless ninth inning.
The Bucks and MoonDogs wrap up their series on Friday evening at 6:35 p.m. CST in Waterloo.