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Lunkers slip past Stingers

WILLMAR -- The way things went the last week, the Stingers can't wait to be back on the road again.

They sure didn't accomplish much toward securing a second-half pennant during a three-game homestand that ended Sunday night with a 5-3 loss to the Brainerd Area Lunkers.

Coupled with a pair of shin kicks by the Alexandria Beetles, the Stingers have now lost three straight after a six-game winning streak amassed largely while touring.

There was more late-inning frustration for the Stingers, now 6-4 in the second half of the North Division. Tied 3-3 through six, the Lunkers got one run in the seventh and one in the eighth. Jack Shannon, the second Willmar pitcher out of the bullpen, took the loss. He worked two innings and both runs allowed were unearned on a three-error night by the Stingers.

In contrast, Willmar was blanked by Brainerd pitching the last six innings. Eduardo Gonzalez's solo homer in the third, his first this summer, was the last bit of offensive production.

Willmar outhit the Lunkers 10-7. Sean Dwyer went 3-for-4 to hike his average to .282. Gonzalez is hitting .336 after going 2-for-3.

After completing a three-game set three days at Brainerd, the Stingers return to Baker Field on Thursday to begin a two-game series with Rochester.

Saturday's game

Fireworks are all Beetles

WILLMAR -- Alexandria set the tone in the first inning by scoring four runs off Willmar Stingers' starting pitcher Thomas Taylor and the Beetles went on to post a 15-5 victory Saturday night and sweep the two-game set.

The early fireworks were part of a 17-hit display from the Beetles that included three homers

Every Beetle who started had at least one hit. Rick Devereaux was 4-for-6 with a three-run homer and six RBI. Chad Bunting could text his memorable night included four hits, five runs and four RBI.

For the Stingers, Pat Stover was 2-for-5 with a double and two runs.

The Stingers' long evening concluded with a first-rate fireworks show set off from behind the outfield fence where several of the Beetles' hits had landed.