Northwoods Baseball: Stingers' 4 HRs sink MoonDogs
MANKATO -- A power surge fueled by Dillon Haupt's two home runs allowed Willmar to trip up Northwoods North Division front-runner Mankato 10-4 Friday at Franklin Rogers Park.
The teams are now tied for first place at 6-4 in the second half of the season. The MoonDogs (34-10) won the first half by eight games over the Stingers (26-18).
Michael Suchy supplied Willmar with a three-run homer that was immediately followed by a solo shot from Kenny Roberts in the fifth inning. The four-run frame put the visitors up 7-2.
Haupt broke a 2-2 tie with a solo blast in the fourth and added another solo homer in the ninth. The catcher now has five homers on the season, Roberts nine and Suchy six. Roberts is just one homer away from the league lead, shared by Tyler Marincov of Madison in the South Division and Alexandria's Ben Moore.
Benefitting from all of the offense was Mark Lukowski.
The Stingers' right-hander worked the first four innings, giving up three hits, two walks and no earned runs while striking out one to get the win. Tall right-hander Jon Flinn took over and held Mankato scoreless in 3.2 innings of work. Josh Biggs recorded the last four outs to close out the Stingers' third straight win.
Max Kuhn added a pair of RBI singles and Hunter Dozier had a hand in Willmar's two runs in the first by doubling in Kuhn and scoring on a wild pitch. Matt Jackson also had two hits in Willmar's 11-hit offense.
Seven different players had a hit for Mankato with Chase Fowler and David Andriese collecting two each.
Mankato hosts Willmar today at 6:05 p.m. before the Stingers host Waterloo on Sunday at 6:05 p.m.