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Mustangs Handle Sedalia, Tighten Grip on the North

The St. Joseph Mustangs picked up their third consecutive win Sunday evening in Sedalia. Defeating the Bombers 8-4, the Mustangs improved to 28-13 overall and 26-12 in the M.I.N.K. League. Their magic number for clinching the North Division’s top seed is now five.

Right-hander Camden Lutz made his first start of the summer, and it was a dandy. Though he had not thrown more than five innings in a game this season, Lutz pitched a complete game with five hits allowed Sunday. With the performance, Lutz earned his first win of the summer and lowered his earned run average to 4.10.

While their starter retired the first 10 Bombers he faced, the Mustangs offense went to work. In the third, three consecutive walks brought in the game’s first run. An inning later, catcher Oscar Pegg began his season-high three-RBI night with a run-scoring groundout.

Though Sedalia pulled back within a run on a long ball in the fourth, St. Joe would bust the game open in the sixth. Pegg kickstarted the six-run frame with a two-run double to center field. Shortstop Cole Slibowski and center fielder Brayden Luikart followed with RBI singles, expanding the Mustang lead to 6-1. Finally, with two away and the bases juiced, third baseman Michael Paule yanked a single that scored two more.

Sedalia attempted a rally down the stretch, scoring a run in the sixth, seventh and ninth innings. Down to their final out, the Bombers brought the tying run to the on-deck circle, but a fielder’s choice ended the game.

Leading the North by three games, the Mustangs will travel to second-place Clarinda for their most crucial series this summer. With two wins at Municipal Stadium, St. Joe can all but wrap up the chase for the top seed. Monday’s game is scheduled for 7 p.m., followed by an off day Tuesday before another game Wednesday.

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