WILLMAR -- The Rochester Honkers picked up their first victory of the young Northwoods League season here Saturday, but their pitching struggles continued in the nightcap of a doubleheader against the Willmar Stingers.

Rochester won the opener 11-4, but dropped the second game 13-2.

The loss in the nightcap marked the second time in three games that the Honkers allowed 13 runs. Through four games, Rochester has given up a total of 37 runs and has been outscored 37-21.

In the Game 1 victory, the Honkers' pitchers were sharp. Three pitchers combined to allow a total of three hits, including just one by starter Larson Kindreich, a 6-foot-4, 210-pound left-hander. Kindreich earned the victory, going five innings, striking out five batters and walking none. Jack Zalasky and Stone Churby each pitched two innings to close out the win for Rochester.

The Honkers were led at the plate by catcher and cleanup hitter Tanner Tweedt (Sacramento City College), who went 2-for-5 with a home run, two runs scored and four RBIs. Connor Denning and Robert Moore also had two hits each for the Honkers, while Ryan Wrobleski and Bryce Matthews both connected for two-run home runs.

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The wheels came off early for the Honkers (1-3 overall) early in the second game, a 13-2 loss. Willmar scored three runs in the first and four in the fourth to build a 7-0 lead less than halfway through the game. Rochester out-hit the Stingers 10-9 in the game, but the Honkers committed three errors and their pitchers issued 12 walks.

Starter Chris Stefl took the loss, allowing three runs in 1 1/3 innings.

Reliever Kragen Kechely was a bright spot for Rochester; he retired all six batters he faced, striking out three of them, over the final two innings.

Denning was 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI to lead Rochester at the plate. Matthews was 2-for-3, while third baseman Steven Moretto went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI.

The Honkers play at Willmar at 6:35 p.m. Sunday, then play two games at Mankato before returning home Wednesday to face Willmar in the start of a three-game homestand.

BOX SCORE: Honkers 11, Willmar 4

BOX SCORE: Willmar 13, Honkers 2

• • • •




Waterloo 3 1 .750 --

St. Cloud 2 1 .667 1/2

Willmar 3 2 .600 1/2

Rochester 1 3 .250 2

Mankato 0 2 .000 2


Waterloo at Mankato, 5:05 p.m.

Rochester at Willmar, 6:05 p.m.


Rochester at Mankato, 6:35 p.m.

St. Cloud at Waterloo, 6:35 p.m.


Rochester at Mankato, 6:35 p.m.

St. Cloud at Waterloo, 6:35 p.m.