(Mankato, M.N.)- After a doubleheader in Willmar yesterday, the Stingers headed south once again to face the MoonDogs at Franklin Rogers Park Monday night. Despite a late rally, Willmar fell to the MoonDogs in extras 6-5, marking the first time in 2020 the Stingers have lost back-to-back games.
DJ Wilkinson started on the hill for the Stingers. He was efficient early, pitching scoreless baseball through three innings. However, in the fourth, Mankato got their first opportunity. The MoonDogs tallied three in the inning, walking twice with the bases loaded and an RBI single from Zach Kokoska gave them the early lead.
Willmar responded quickly, however, grabbing three runs of their own in the fifth. Kyle Manzardo hit an RBI single. Griffin Cheney scored on a thrown error. The inning was capped off by an RBI double from Chase Stanke. The Stingers quickly turned it back into a tie ball game.
Mankato would get a run back in the seventh as Tanner Craig hit a sacrifice fly to deep center to score the go-ahead run. The 4-3 score held until the ninth when Willmar was faced with their final three outs.
Griffin Cheney led off the ninth with a walk, before swiping second and advancing to third on an error. Jayson Newman then knotted up the game with an RBI up the middle, forcing a bottom of the ninth.
Trevor Divinski, in his first appearance of the season, pitched a 1-2-3 ninth to force extras.
In the tenth, Willmar struck first with an RBI single off the bat of Deylan Pigford, giving the Stingers a one run lead heading into the bottom of the tenth.
However, Mankato would not go down. They tied the game on a RBI single from Michael Curialle and then with bases loaded and two outs, won the game on an RBI single from Mason Hull.
The MoonDogs have now won back-to-back games against the Stingers as they prepare to meet for a fifth time tomorrow evening. First pitch will be at 7:05 pm from Willmar.