Roberts leads Stingers to first win
ROCHESTER, Minn. -- It took until the sixth game of the season, but the Willmar Stingers are now in the win column.
Kenny Roberts hit a three-run home run and Jacob Cage picked up the win in relief to lead the Stingers past the Honkers 9-5 on Monday in Rochester.
The Stingers improve to 1-5 in the Northwoods League North Division. They play next at 7:05 p.m. today at Rochester.
Willmar starter Jared McCrummen gave up two first-inning runs to the Honkers on a wild pitch and a fielder's choice, but the Stingers tied it up in the second on a groundout by Greg Fettes and a Mitch Rowan single.
After Rochester re-took the lead with a run in the third, the Stingers dealt their biggest blow with a five-run fourth.
Fettes led off the inning with a walk. Logan Allen singled, and after Rowan laid down a bunt, Forrestt Allday walked to load the bases. After Hunter Dozier flied out, Michael Suchy came through with a single to score Fettes. Allen also scored on the play on an error by the right fielder.
That brought up Roberts, who was hitting .105 coming into the game, who crushed a three-run homer, his first as a Stinger and the first by any Stingers player this season.
The home run gave Willmar a 7-3 lead they wouldn't relinquish.
McCrummen was taken out after four innings and relieved by Cage, who pitched three innings of relief for the win, allowing only a solo home run to Rochester's Ben Lahn.
Josh Biggs then came in to pitch 1-1/3 innings and Brady Anderson recorded the final two outs for the save.
Steven Brault and Zach Benson each had two hits for the Stingers, and Roberts was 1-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
Every Stinger except leadoff hitter Rowan scored a run in the game.
Notes: Brault is hitting .409 through the first six games ... Stephen F. Austin's Hunter Dozier and Zach Benson both debuted for the Stingers in Monday's game ... J.D. Dorgan (St. Thomas) debuted on Saturday ... All of the Stingers' remaining players in the NCAA Regionals were eliminated over the weekend -- Dillon Haupt (San Diego), Max Kuhn (Kentucky), Matt Jackson (Kentucky), Stephen Talbott (Purdue), Mark Lukowski (Creighton) and Corben Green (La.-Monroe)