Rothwell Leads Stingers in Close-Knit Victory

LA CROSSE, Wis. – Jake Rothwell and the Willmar Stingers labored to a thrilling 4-3 victory in La Crosse Saturday evening, moving to 13-12 on the season.

After an hour-long rain delay before the game, Rothwell (Daytona State) led the team by throwing seven innings and getting his fourth win of the season. He gave up one run and four hits in his outing.

The Willmar infielders behind him had three double plays in the game as well, bringing their total to 29 on the season.

In the bottom of the second inning, the Loggers scored a run to take the early lead. The Stingers immediately responded by hitting two home runs in the next frame. Caleb Ledbetter (Montevallo) hit his fourth homer to lead off the third, then Josh Bissonette (Baylor) hit his first of the year just moments later.

The home runs gave the Stingers a lead they would never concede.

Another Willmar run came in the fifth inning via a bases loaded walk, then Eli Wilson (Minnesota) drove in the fourth run of the day with a ground ball in the eighth.

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Braxton Johns (East Georgia) collected his first save of the 2017 season as he faced four batters.

With two outs in the Loggers' bottom of the ninth inning, a hard ground ball to third base challenged Nolan Bumstead (CS-Northridge) to come up with a game-saving play. Diving to his left, he controlled the ball before popping up and delivering a perfect throw to end the game.

The victory gives the Stingers a series sweep over La Crosse. It is their third series sweep of the year.

The Stingers return home to play the Mankato MoonDogs tomorrow. At 6:05 p.m., they will continue last week's game against the MoonDogs which was suspended in the seventh inning. Currently, the score is 2-2 with Brady Shockey (USC) at the plate in the seventh inning.

Immediately following the completion of the suspended game, the Stingers will play the regularly-scheduled game against the MoonDogs at Bill Taunton Stadium. Cameron Churchill (Nova Southeastern) is expected to start for Willmar.

Tickets for all games at Bill Taunton Stadium are available at or by calling the office at 320-222-2010.

The 2017 Stingers season is presented by Marcus Construction. For more coverage of the Stingers, visit the West Central Tribune online at