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Stingers stave off Express

Willmar Stinger second baseman Davis Elliot tries to complete the second half of a double play in Tuesday's game against the Eau Claire Express at Bill Taunton Stadium. Jake Schultz / Tribune

WILLMAR - The Willmar Stingers cruised to a four-run lead after eight innings and survived a sloppy ninth to squeeze by Eau Claire 5-4 on Tuesday at Bill Taunton Stadium.

The Stingers improved to 8-7. Willmar and the Express play the second game of a two-game set at 7:05 p.m. Wednesday at Taunton.

Willmar starter Trevor Divinski battled Eau Claire's Justin Slaten through 3-1/2 innings until the Stingers' Caleb Ricca hit a solo home run in the bottom of the fourth.

The Stinges added a run in the fifth on Davis Elliot's run-scoring double, and they made it 5-1 with a three-run seventh, with Elliot again doubling in a run.

But in the ninth, two errors and two wild pitches helped the Express score three runs and pull within a run. With runners on first and third, Willmar reliever Jake Drew struckout Eau Claire's Phillip Sikes to end the game.

Willmar 5, Eau Claire 4

Eau Claire 000 010 003-4 6 2

Willmar 000 110 300-5 8 1

Hitting - Eau Claire: Garrett Gouldsmith 2-4 2b r ... Willmar: Caleb Ricca 1-3 rbi-2 r, Tyler Reichenborn 1-4 rbi, John Trousdale 1-3 2b, Jaxon Newman 1-4, Matt Malkin 1-4, Cal Elvers 1-3 r-2, Davis Elliot 2-2 2b-2 rbi-2 r

Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) - Eau Claire: Justin Slaten (L) 5.2-5-2-2-2-11, Colton Hale 2-3-3-3-1-2, Tyler Strzelczyk 0.1-0-0-0-0-0 ... Willmar: Trevor Divinski (W) 6-3-1-1-2-3, Braxton Johns 2.1-1-2-1-2-3, Jake Drew 0.2-2-1-0-1-2

VFW Baseball

Willmar 11, Cottonwood 2

Sam Huseby drove in three runs and tallied three hits to help himself out on the mound against Cottonwood.

He worked four innings and struck out five while his offense scored early and often. Post 1639 scored seven runs in the second inning.

Cottonwood 011 00-2 3 5

Willmar 272 0x-11 11 2

Hitting - Cottonwood: Cody Caron 1-2 2b rbi ... Willmar: Hunter Magnuson 2-4 rbi r-3, Jack Roehl 1-4 r, Tanner Bauman 2-3 rbi-2 r-3, Chase Dirksen 1-3 rbi r, Sam Huseby 3-3 rbi-3 r, Zach Schultz 1-2 rbi r, Dominic Amon 1-3, Joe Price 0-2 r

Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) - Cottonwood: Cain Herigon (L) 1.1-8-9-9-2-2, Noah Jensen 2.2-3-2-0-0-3 ... Willmar: Huseby (W) 4-3-2-1-4-5, Carter Ochsendorf 1-0-0-0-0-2

Willmar 12, Cottonwood 0

Ashton Gregory tossed a two-hitter in five innings of work as Willmar racked up 12 runs on 12 hits against Cottonwood.

Jon Volk hit a double and a triple with a pair of runs and Asaiah Smith scored twice with two hits. Gregory helped his own cause with two hits and three RBIs, joining Jett Solanek who also had three RBIs.

Cottonwood 000 00-0 2 0

Willmar 362 1x-12 12 0

Hitting - Cottonwood: Aaron Lieneman 1-2 ... Willmar: Andrew Baumgart 2-3 r-2, Asaiah Smith 2-3 2b r-2, Ashton Gregory 2-2 rbi-3, Dalton Ogdahl 1-2 rbi-2, Dylan Arndorfer 0-2 r, Jon Volk 2-2 2b 3b rbi r-2, Jett Solanek 1-2 3b rbi-3 r, Adam Bengtson 1-3 2b, Carter Ochsendorf 1-3 2b rbi, Dominic Amon 0-0 r-2, Jack Roehl 0-0 r-2

Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) - Cottonwood: Cody Caron (L) 4-12-12-11-2-2 ... Willmar: Ashton Gregory (W) 5-2-0-0-2-9

Legion Baseball

Madison 3, K-Town 1

Madison scored a pair of runs in the fourth inning to top K-Town Tuesday night in Kerkhoven.

Wyatt Halvorson logged a pair of hits with a double and an RBI and went the distance from the mound in an economical outing.

K-Town finished the game with nine hits but Ryan Torkelson was the only one to score, doing so in the second inning.

Madison 001 200 0-3 7 1

K-Town 010 000 0-1 9 1

Hitting - Madison: Peyton Mortenson 2-4 2b r, Braiden Kittelson 0-3 r, Evan Benson 0-2 rbi, Caden Bjornjeld 1-3, Dain Haas 1-4 rbi, Korbin Kells 1-4 2b r, Wyatt Halvorson 2-3 2b rbi ... Home: Weston Gjerde 1-4, Dylan Rudningen 1-4, Caleb Collins 2-4, Ryan Torkelson 1-4 2b r, Regan Carlson 1-3, Brandon Rasmusson 1-2, Josh Peterson 1-3 2b rbi, Caleb Heidelberger 1-1

Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) - Madison: Wyatt Halvorson (W) 7-9-1-1-0-2 ... K-Town: Rasmusson (L) 4-7-3-1-4-4, Gjerde 3-0-0-0-1-2