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Published On: August 4th, 2014

MANKATO, Minn.—The Stingers’ offense started hot against the MoonDogs for the second straight night, but Mankato rallied from a four-run first inning deficit to defeat Willmar 10-5 Sunday night at Franklin Rogers Park.

Willmar (43-23 overall, 21-15 second half) had an even better first inning Sunday than it did the night before with four runs in the very first inning, giving starter Andrew Towns a lead from the get-go. Mankato starter Brandon Zywicki lasted just a third of an inning against the Stingers allowing three of the four runs to score.

Frankie Rios singled on the second pitch he saw to start the inning and then moved to second when Sean Beesley walked. Reagan Fowler brought the first run in with a double down the left field line, and Nick Rivera followed with an RBI groundout to make it 2-0. Casey Hughston dropped a single into right field to increase the lead to three and, after Zywicki left, Matt Stubbs had a fielder’s choice grounder to make 4-0.

However, the MoonDogs continued the offensive theme to the night in the first two innings at plate with five of their own runs to take the lead.

But three innings later in the top of the fifth, Willmar had a response to knot the game at five. With the first two outs recorded in the inning, Brett Barbier started a rally with a single back up the middle into center field. Barbier stole second base with Max Dutto at the plate and then Dutto doubled into the alley in right on an 0-2 count to plate Barbier to tie the score.

Towns struck out five batters in his six innings on the mound but suffered the loss after allowing the go-ahead run in the bottom of the sixth, which scored on a two-out error. Mankato tacked on four more in the bottom of the eighth for the final margin of victory.

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Tonight’s Center for Diagnostic Imaging player of the game was Frankie Rios. CDI is your local medical imaging provider. It’s your choice where you go for medical imaging, for MRI, CT, mammograms and pain injections, choose CDI. Visit online at