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Northwoods League: Stingers deny Rox in season finale

Willmar deprives St. Cloud of a league title

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ST. CLOUD — On the final night of the 2020 season, the Willmar Stingers had one goal: play spoiler.

With division-leading St. Cloud needing a win to clinch the Minnesota-Iowa Pod championship, the Stingers denied the Rox a chance to celebrate following a 9-3 Northwoods League victory on Thursday from Joe Faber Field.

The Stingers (22-20) completed their 11th straight winning season.

The Waterloo Bucks captured the division title by virtue of a 17-6 triumph over the Mankato Moondogs.

Seth Miller, in particular, foiled St. Cloud’s championship dreams.

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After a slow start, the right-hander from Augustana University allowed three runs on three hits and three walks with five strikeouts in six solid innings. He did not relinquish a base hit from the third through the sixth innings.

Wyatt Thompson did not give up a run in relief and struck out five in two innings before Eric Romo closed out the game and the summer in the ninth.

Each team scored in the first inning before Willmar created separation in the second when Brennan McKenzie led off the frame by smacking a home run to left field. Next, Hunter Ranweiler reached on a Rox error and advanced to second after a passed ball. He made it 3-1 when he was driven home on a Drey Dirksen single.

The Stingers continued to tack on runs in the middle innings.

Griffin Cheney knocked in McKenzie with a RBI single in the fourth. In the sixth, Brooks Lee pushed the visitors’ advantage to 5-1 when his RBI single scored Ranweiler.

Willmar put the game away with three runs in the seventh. After Jake Meyer scored on a wild pitch, Cheney, who had a team-high three hits, delivered a two-run single.

Lee and McKenzie added two hits. McKenzie joined Ranweiler with three runs scored.

With hits in his final 10 games, Jayson Newman went 1-for-4 and finished the summer with a .405 batting average.

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Willmar 9,
St. Cloud 3

Willmar 120 101 310-9 12 0
St. Cloud 100 000 200-3 9 3
Hitting - Willmar: Griffin Cheney 3-6 rbi-3, Brooks Lee 2-6 2b rbi r, Kyle Manzardo 1-3 bb-2 r, Jayson Newman 1-4 bb rbi sb, Cesar Lopez 1-5 2b rbi, Jake Mayer 0-4 hbp r, Brennan McKenzie 2-3 hr bb-2 r-3, Hunter Ranweiler 1-4 bb r-3, Drey Dirksen 1-4 bb rbi … St. Cloud: Ben Norman 0-4 rbi, Andrew Pintar 2-4 hr bb rbi r, Jack Kelly 1-3 2b bb-2, Jordan Barth 0-3 bb, Jack Winkler2-4 r , Collin Montez 1-4 r, Kodie Kolden 3-4 rbi
Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) - Willmar: Seth Miller (W) 6-5-3-3-3-5, Wyatt Thompson 2-2-0-0-1-5, Eric Romo 1-2-0-0-0-1 … St. Cloud: Luke Albright (L) 3.1-6-4-4-3-5, Trevor Koenig 1.2-1-1-1-1-0, Blake Stelzer 2-2-3-3-3-2, Josh Gainer 2-3-1-1-0-2

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