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'Hawks Cannot Rally, Fall 9-6 to Saints

FARGO, ND – Having fallen behind early, the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks battled their way back but dropped the second game of a three game series 9-6 at the hands of the St. Paul Saints before a crowd of 3,533 fans at Newman Outdoor Field on Sunday evening.

The Saints put digits on the board first behind the bat of Vinny DiFazio. RedHawks' starter Brandon Mann yielded a walk to leadoff man Alonzo Harris followed by a Willie Argo single to start things in the top of the first. DiFazio stepped to the dish next and knocked Mann's second offering high into the sky. The ball got caught in the jet stream winds blowing out to right field and the ball drifted just beyond the fence for a three run homer giving St. Paul a 3-0 lead.

The league's top offense continued to be productive in the second. Dan Kaczrowski led off the second with a single and Argo and DiFazio would reach via base on balls and a hit by pitch, respectively, loading the bases for Angelo Songco. Songco, who had already doubled once in the game, belted a shot to the alley in right-center that cleared the bases and left him standing on second with a three RBI double, his second of the game, making it 6-0 Saints.

The Saints tend to do most of their damage in the first three innings of the game. St. Paul has produced 41% of it's runs in the first three innings and tonight was no different as they tacked on another in the third.  Joey Paciorek led off the inning with a double to right and would later be driven in by Harris making it 7-0 after three. They would add one more in the fourth as Angelo Songco led off with a walk and would be brought home later by Paciorek giving St. Paul an 8-0 lead.

Through five innings the RedHawks could not touch Saints' starter Jeff Shields. Shields is no stranger to the 'Hawks, as he had already faced them three times prior this season, going 2-0 with a 2.00 ERA in those games. Fargo-Moorhead would finally get to Shields and score in the sixth inning. Zach Penprase would lead off with a walk followed by a Chad Mozingo single giving the 'Hawks runners on first and third with no outs. Joe Bonfe stepped to the plate next grounding out to shortstop Anthony Phillips but it allowed Penprase to score. Joe Dunigan followed with an RBI single lined to right making it 8-2 St. Paul after six frames.

By scoring in the sixth inning the RedHawks snapped a drought of 16 consecutive scoreless innings that dated back to the series finale on July 31st with Grand Prairie, where Joe Dunigan grounded into a 6-4 fielder's choice that allowed Chad Mozingo to score.

Brandon Mann would enter the seventh inning for Fargo-Moorhead. The left-hander showed much resilience in the outing, despite allowing nine runs (all earned) on 13 hits with six walks and seven strikeouts in 6.1 innings of work. Mann added seven more strikeouts to his league leading total and now has 91 strikeouts on the season. He was pounded early by the Saints, but maintained composure and settled down in the fifth and sixth innings. In the seventh he surrendered a double to Harris followed by an RBI single from Argo which brought out Doug Simunic signaling the end of the night for Mann. He gave way to Benji Waite after hurling 143 pitches and Waite would retire the next two batters he faced ending the frame.

Jeff Shields would not return for the Saints in the top of the eighth. Manager George Tsamis handed the ball to Mike Zouzalik for the inning after Shields went seven strong innings allowing two runs on six hits with one walk and five strikeouts. Zouzalik gave up a single to Penprase first which brought Mozingo to the dish. Mozingo had already extended his hitting streak to ten games earlier in the night as he had singled off of Shields twice, and he added to his big night with a two run moon shot to right-center making it 9-4. In his ten game hit streak Mozingo has seen his average rise from .317 to .340 and he has been able to read pitchers more effectivley during the stretch. Of the homer he said, “He started me off fastball and then threw me a couple of big, big curveballs but I didn't want any of that. He came in with a fastball on me on the next pitch and I fouled it off. He saw me get long (on that pitch) and I saw him shake it off and figured he wanted to come at me again and I was ready for it.” During the streak he is batting 21-of-41 (.512) with 11 runs scored and 14 RBIs. Mozingo went 3-for-4 with two runs scored and two runs batted in on Sunday night.

Fargo-Moorhead would attempt to rally in the bottom of the ninth. Ryan Pineda and Joe Staley led off with back-to-back singles. Pineda would be driven in by Tyler Peterson and Staley on a sac fly from Connor Andrus making it 9-6. Andrus' ball was struck hard to right-center but Mike Kvasnicka charged and made a spectacular diving catch for the second out of the inning. If Andrus' ball were to have landed the next batter, Penprase, would have brought up the tying run to the plate as Peterson was already on base. St. Paul closer Ryan Rodebaugh then forced Penprase to ground out to short ending the game while earning his American Association leading 17th save of the season.

Mann (3-7) takes the loss for the RedHawks while Shields (10-3) becomes the third St. Paul starting pitcher to reach 10 wins this season.

Fargo-Moorhead drops to 23-43 and 20 games below .500 with the loss while St. Paul improves to 51-16 and ensures themselves another series victory with the back-to-back wins. The two teams will return tomorrow night for the series finale at 7:02 p.m. with Tyler Herron (4-4, 3.86 ERA) taking the mound for the 'Hawks while the Saints will send the former big-leaguer Pedro Hernandez (6-2, 3.99 ERA) to the hill. Tomorrow's radio pre-game begins at 6:40 p.m. as all games can be heard on 740 AM The Fan with Scott Miller and Jack Michaels.

 

Game Date: 08/02/2015

St Paul Saints  9 AT Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks  6

                                 YTD                                   YTD
St Paul            AB  R  H BI   AVG  Fargo              AB  R  H BI   AVG
A.Harris CF         5  2  2  1  .315  D.Muren CF          1  0  0  0  .237
W.Argo LF           5  2  2  1  .325   C.Andrus LF,PH     3  0  0  1  .225
V.DiFazio DH        5  2  1  3  .370  Z.Penprase SS       4  2  2  0  .273
A.Songco 1B         5  1  4  3  .351  C.Mozingo CF,LF     4  2  3  2  .340
M.Kvasnicka RF      5  0  0  0  .311  J.Bonfe 1B          4  0  1  1  .283
R.Lashley 3B        4  0  2  0  .404  J.Dunigan RF        4  0  1  1  .220
J.Paciorek C        4  1  2  1  .284  R.Pineda 2B         4  1  1  0  .255
A.Phillips SS       4  0  0  0  .257  J.Staley C          4  1  2  0  .259
D.Kaczrowski 2B     4  1  2  0  .262  T.Oldham 3B         4  0  0  0  .280
                                      T.Peterson DH       4  0  1  1  .240
                   41  9 15  9                           36  6 11  6

St Paul              3 3 1   1 0 0   1 0 0 -  9 15  0
Fargo                0 0 0   0 0 2   0 2 2 -  6 11  0
2B--A.Harris (9), A.Songco 2 (21), J.Paciorek (10), Z.Penprase (15).
HR--V.DiFazio (12), C.Mozingo (3). RBI--A.Harris (41), W.Argo (41),
V.DiFazio  3 (60), A.Songco  3 (58), J.Paciorek (17), C.Andrus (6),
C.Mozingo  2 (42), J.Bonfe (21), J.Dunigan (39), T.Peterson (9).
HP--V.DiFazio (7). SF--C.Andrus (1). SB--J.Dunigan (9). 
LOB--St Paul 12, Fargo 5. DP--D. Kaczrowski(2B) - A. Phillips(SS) - A.
Songco(1B), R. Pineda(2B) - Z. Penprase(SS) - J. Bonfe(1B). 
                                                                YTD
                                 IP   H   R  ER  BB  SO  HR     ERA
 St Paul
J.Shields (W,10-1)              7.0   6   2   2   1   5   0    3.04
M.Zouzalik                      1.0   2   2   2   0   0   1    2.43
D.Gay                           0.1   3   2   2   0   0   0    3.79
R.Rodebaugh (S,17)              0.2   0   0   0   0   0   0    2.43
                                9    11   6   6   1   5   1
 Fargo
B.Mann (L,3-7)                  6.1  13   9   9   6   7   1    4.78
B.Waite                         0.2   0   0   0   0   0   0    5.49
J.Chudy                         1.0   1   0   0   0   0   0    5.57
M.Nesseth                       1.0   1   0   0   0   1   0    3.46
                                9    15   9   9   6   8   1
WP--M.Zouzalik (3). HB--B.Mann (5). SO--W.Argo, V.DiFazio 2, M.Kvasnicka 2,
R.Lashley, J.Paciorek, D.Kaczrowski, R.Pineda 3, T.Oldham, T.Peterson.
BB--A.Harris, W.Argo, R.Lashley, J.Paciorek, A.Phillips, D.Kaczrowski,
Z.Penprase. BF--J.Shields 27 (351), M.Zouzalik 5 (112), D.Gay 4 (154),
R.Rodebaugh 2 (121), B.Mann 38 (416), B.Waite 2 (88), J.Chudy 4 (105),
M.Nesseth 4 (62). P-S--J.Shields 99-64, M.Zouzalik 20-13, D.Gay 13-8,
R.Rodebaugh 9-6, B.Mann 143-86, B.Waite 5-4, J.Chudy 12-10, M.Nesseth
19-11. 
T--3:06.  A--3533

Weather: 73 F, Sunny 

 



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