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Stingers continue to finalize 2011 roster

WILLMAR -- The Willmar Stingers of the Northwoods League continue to finalize its 2011 roster as the team recently signed eight players and looks to wrap up the last roster spots in the next few weeks.

Joining the Stingers are outfielders Tyler Zupcic of Appalachian State University and Mitchell Rowan of Williamette University, pitchers Kody Gorden and Anthony Consiglio of Western Nevada Community College), Jack Shannon of the University of San Diego, Scott Zuloaga of Scottsdale Community College, Dan Russell of the University of Western Illinois and Tanner Banks of Salt Lake City Community College.

Zupcic started 53 games as a freshman last year for the Mountainers and is currently hitting .318 with 12 stolen bases this season.

Rowan is red-shirt junior who played in only seven games this spring before fracturing his wrist. Prior to the injury, he was selected First Team Preseason All-American by As a sophomore, he hit .403 with 12 home runs and 42 RBI. Rowan is also a punter and kicker on the Bearcats football team.

College teammates Gorden and Consiglio will be looked upon to make an immediate impact for the Stingers on the mound. Gorden is a sophomore southpaw who currently leads his team in starts and has a 6-1 record with a 3.26 ERA. Consiglio is a freshman who is currently 7-1 with 48 strikeouts in 48 innings pitched.

Shannon is a redshirt sophomore from the University of San Diego. In 142/3 innings this spring, he has 14 strikeouts and opponents are hitting just .222 against him. Last season, he appeared in 16 games and had 34 strikeouts in 32 innings with a 3.10 ERA. In high school, Shannon was coached by former major league pitcher Jack McDowell.

Zuloaga is a sophomore who has recently signed to play at New Mexico State University next season. This season, Zuloaga in 39 innings has 43 strikeouts and a 1.82 ERA for the Fighting Artichokes.

Russell, a junior, has a team-high 81 innings pitched with 67 strikeouts in 13 appearances this spring. He began his college career at Illinois Central College and is their all-time career strikeout leader with 148. Also, in high school, he struck out 22 hitters in one game.

Banks, a freshman, is currently leading his team with a 5-0 record with a 1.19 ERA and four saves. He's team-low ERA has helped lead the Bruins to a nationally ranked 43-13 record.

The Stingers' open the season June 1 at home against Thunder Bay.