St. Cloud missed a chance to become the Northwoods League's all time best team.
The St. Cloud Rox closed out their best regular season in franchise history Saturday night before 1,625 fans at Joe Faber Field. Unfortunately, the Minnesota Mud Puppies were rude guests, defeating the Rox 7-3 to keep St. Cloud one win short of the best-ever Northwoods League record.
The Rox finish the regular season 50-18 overall, just percentage points shy of the 2006 Rochester Honkers' record-setting mark. St. Cloud won 41 of 50 games during one stretch and ended a remarkable 29-7 at home.
Coming off a Friday performance where they amassed only two hits, the Mud Puppies took a 2-0 lead into seventh inning, before a Justin Kirby solo home run cut the lead in half. St. Cloud relievers opened the floodgates in the ninth, however, putting the game out of reach.
The Minnesota Mud Puppies put Saturday's game away in the ninth with five runs.
Before the contest, the Rox honored Otto Kemp and Josh Gainer as the team's player and pitcher of the year, respectively. Northwoods League playoffs begin Sunday afternoon at Mankato (44-24), the only team to beat the Rox more than three times in 2021. The best two-of-three series shifts to central Minnesota Monday night, and Tuesday, if necessary. KACMedia.com will have in-person coverage at all St. Cloud Rox playoff games.