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Moyer's three homers sink Duluth

Willmar’s Hutton Moyer follows through on a solo home run off Duluth starter Dylan Barrow during the first inning Wednesday at Bill Taunton Stadium in Willmar. Tribune photo by Ben Brewster

WILLMAR — Hutton Moyer blasted three home runs, including the game-winner, and the Willmar Stingers took down the Duluth Huskies 9-8 on Wednesday at Bill Taunton Stadium.

Moyer’s shots came in the first — the Stingers’  second at-bat of the game — fifth and ninth innings, with the first two coming from the left side of the plate.

The Huskies brought in lefty Bo Hellquist to force the switch-hitting Moyer to bat right-handed, but it didn’t matter as he clubbed the walk-off shot to dead center field.

“He’s kind of experienced a lot this summer,” Stingers’ manager Drew Saberhagen said. “Going 0-for-9 in his first game and then having a three homer game. He’s really come around, the guys are really enjoying his presence. 

The Stingers had held an 8-7 lead after Duluth plated two in the seventh.

Tyler Cohen came in to save it for Willmar, but gave up a single and a bloop double to tie it up 8-8. 

He picked up the win when the Stingers won it in the bottom half.

Brett Barbier also homered for the Stingers, a two-run shot in the second, and Casey Hughston was 2-for-4 with an RBI double.

Andrew Towns gutted out 6.1 innings, striking out four and allowing five runs on 12 hits.

“I think our pitching might’ve been overachieving and our offense underachieving in the first half,” Saberhagen said. “Now they’re going to come back to the middle. I don’t think anyone’s looking forward to seeing us in the playoffs.”

The Stingers are getting ready for the toughest part of their schedule with four doubleheaders in four days, thanks to several June rainouts.

“The good thing is we have a bunch of guys who can do anything,” Saberhagen said. “We’ll have four starters on normal rest and four bullpen guys who can pitch.”

The Stingers are 9-6 in the Northwoods League North Division second half, half a game behind first-place Eau Claire.

They play a doubleheader 7:05 p.m. today at Madison.

Ben Brewster

Ben Brewster covers the Willmar Stingers and other area sports, as well as laying out the daily sports section cover for the West Central Tribune. Follow him on Twitter @benbrewster.

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