ROCHESTER–In the first game of a four game road swing, the Stingers came out on top in style on Thursday in a thrilling 7-5 win over the Rochester Honkers at Mayo Field. Willmar got out to a quick start, leaping out to a 3-0 lead in the first on All Star Jordan Smith’s third home run of the year, his first away from Bill Taunton Stadium. With the win, the Stingers pull two games above .500 overall in 2010, and improve to 4-3 in the second half.
His home run aside, Smith had an impressive game, breaking out of his recent funk at the plate with a three for five performance, fleshed out with a triple, a single, three runs scored, four RBI’s and a stolen base. Not to be outdone, Willmar third baseman Mitch Delfino followed Smith’s lead with a line drive two run homer of his own in the fifth, his first of the season to make it 5-0 Stingers.
David Carroll got the start for Willmar, improving to 2-1 on the season with his longest outing of the season, allowing just three earned runs over seven and two thirds innings to a very potent Rochester lineup. After Logan Birr registered the final out of the eighth inning and the first of the ninth, Jacob Barnes came on to close it out and managed a pair of strikeouts to earn his fifth save of the season. Barnes has now struck out each of the last five batters he’s faced.
Next up for the 22-20 Stingers, it’s the finale of a two game set with Rochester on Friday at 7:05 pm at Mayo Field before a pair in Mankato and the All Star Break. Willmar returns home on July 27th at 7:05 pm to take on the Alexandria Beetles. For tickets, call 320-222-2010 or log on to willmarstingers.com for more information. We remind you to check out wctrib.com for all your Stingers coverage. The 2010 season is presented by Charter.