Baseball: Gerl, the Huskies overthrow the Stingers, move you closer to the playoffs

Baseball: Gerl, the Huskies overthrow the Stingers, move you closer to the playoffs

Ben Gerl did not have much luck in his previous starts for the Duluth Huskies, but he was called up on Tuesday and the result was a 5-0 Northwoods League win over Willmar Stingers on a sunny 85-degree night before 702 at Wade Stadium.

When he played at the same stadium, his grandfather Bernie Gerl played 70 years ago as a member of Duluth Dukes, and Ben Gerl (1-3) threw seven closing rounds to earn his first win of the season. The North Kentucky left from Joliet, Illinois, allowed just four hits with five strikeouts and a walk as the Huskies moved closer to a NWL playoff spot.

Mike Boeve and Ambren Voitik had two hits each to lead the Huskies offensively while Eric Nelson and Brody Maynard each struck a hit-free relief as the Stingers were held to just four hits. That was it Huskiesthird season finale.

Jakob Newton and William Hamiter each had a hit and walk to lead Willmar (14-16 second inning) while Jack Blesch (2-2) took the loss despite allowing only one earned run in six innings.

The Huskies (15-15) moved to 2.5 games behind vacant Waterloo (17-12) in the Great Plains East second half. More importantly, Duluth (27-37) remained ahead of Eau Claire (26-38) and La Crosse (25-39) in a season-long position that will determine the final playoff spot if Waterloo wins the second half as they did first.

Duluth plays at Mankato 18:35 on Wednesday and Thursday before returning home for a two-match series with Bismarck at 18:35 on Friday and 15:05 on Saturday to end the regular season.

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