WILLMAR -- A bases-loaded walk in the sixth inning and two nail-biting at bats in the seventh helped Willmar earn a 2-1 win over Little Falls in Central Lakes Conference baseball action Thursday at Bill Taunton Stadium.
The Cardinals (2-1, 2-1) scored the go-ahead run as Austin Adamson, pinch hitting for Adam Fagerstrom, drew a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the sixth inning. Willmar loaded the bases with two outs when Logan Birkland drew a walk, Jake Tone reached on an error and Derek Loiselle took a walk.
Andrew Bangen, pitching in relief of starter Nathaniel Swoyer, got the first out of the seventh on a pop fly to first base, then allowed a Ben Hanowski single. Bangen went to a full count with both of the next two batters before getting the second out on a pop up to the catcher and then a groundout to second for the final out.
Both of the Cardinals' runs were unearned. Birkland, who scored both of the team's runs, tying the game in the fifth by scoring on an error.
Bangen picked up the win, allowing two hits in two innings and recording one strikeout. Nathaniel Swoyer threw the first five innings, allowing one run on five hits and striking out two.
Jordan Smith had both hits for the Cardinals.
Willmar 2, Little Falls 1
Little Falls 001 000 0 -- 1 7 2
Willmar 000 011 x -- 2 2 3
HITTING - Little Falls: Ben Hanowski 1-for-4; Riley Hirsch 2-for-4, 2b; Logan Kalis 1-for-4, 2b, rbi; Joe Rydeen 1-for-3; Eddie Wenzel 1-for-3, Ben Nelson 1-for-2 ... Willmar: Jordan Smith 2-for-3, 2b
PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) -- Little Falls: Logan Kalis (L) 5Xc-2-2-0-5-8; Michael Sperl Zc-0-0-0-1-1 ... Willmar: Nathaniel Swoyer 5-5-1-1-0-2; Andrew Bangen (W) 2-2-0-0-0-1