Stingers fall to Waterloo, creating 4-way tie for first in Northwoods North
WILLMAR -- Willmar's Corben Green extended his hitting streak to 20 games but the Waterloo Bucks topped the Stingers 6-4 on Monday at Bill Taunton Stadium.
Waterloo's Thomas Lindauer hit a go-ahead, two-run single in the fourth inning to break a 2-2 tie and give the Bucks a lead they wouldn't relinquish.
After Willmar starter George Asmus gave up two first-inning runs, the Stingers got on the board with a Michael Suchy RBI-double in the bottom half of the first. They tied it up in third when Kenny Roberts scored from third base on a wild pitch, but that was as close as they would get to a lead.
Waterloo's Jordan Adams lined a home run to left field in the sixth and the Bucks added one more insurance run in the seventh inning to make it 6-3.
The Stingers had a chance to tie it up in the eighth after a Max Kuhn sacrifice fly made it 6-4, but Zach Benson, representing the tying run, grounded out to end the threat.
Green's hit came in his final at-bat of the game, an eighth-inning single that was just out of the reach of Bucks' second baseman Connor McCallum.
The hit, which drove in the Stingers' third run, tied him for the sixth-longest hitting streak in Northwoods League history. Luis Rivera holds the all-time record with a 32-game streak for Waterloo in 1995.
Waterloo starting pitcher Brock Hudgens held the Stingers to four hits and two runs while striking out eight to earn the win, and Willmar fell to 7-5 and a four-way tie for first place in the Northwoods League North Division second half.
Mikey Ramirez earned a three-inning save in relief of Hudgens. He gave up two runs on four hits.
Asmus suffered the loss for the Stingers, allowing four runs in five innings while striking out five.
Though the Stingers lost their second game in a row, manager Matt Hollod said he has seen some improvements.
"It's been a lot of good hitting, timely hitting," he said before the game. "The last four or five starts our starting pitching has been a lot better and the defense has been a lot better."
The loss dropped the Stingers out of sole possession of first place in the North. The Stingers, Mankato, Alexandria and Duluth are all at 7-5 in the second half of the season. The Stingers host the Beetles today at 7:05 p.m.
The Beetles and Stingers meet again on Wednesday in Alexandria before the three-game series wraps up Thursday back at Bill Taunton Stadium in Willmar.