Troy, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Returning to the Capital Region to begin the first of back-to-back doubleheaders and a nine-game homestand over seven days, the Tri-City ValleyCats (23-25, 8-6) split a single admission doubleheader with Atlantic Division rival Equipe Quebec (23-26, 4-8). The ‘Cats picked up a 3-1 victory in game one before losing for the first time ever to Quebec, 5-3, in the nightcap in front of a crowd of 1,310 at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium.
Game 1: Tri-City 3, Quebec 1
In a continuation from a game that was suspended in the middle of the second inning on Sunday, July 18, the Tri-City ValleyCats secured their fifth straight win over Equipe Quebec and their sixth consecutive win at home. Second baseman Luis Roman wasted no time in getting the ‘Cats on the board, drilling a two-run homer to right field in the bottom of the second for his first in a ValleyCats uniform.
Following a solo shot to get the visitors on the board in the top of the fifth, Chris Kwitzer added insurance for Tri-City in the home half of the inning with a 411-foot solo bomb to right center for his third homer of the year.
With the ‘Cats out-hitting Quebec, 6-4 on the offensive side of the ball, right-hander Parker Kelly (4-4) tossed a gem on the mound, allowing just one earned run on three hits and helping the team to retire 10 of 11 batters from the second to the fifth. Closer Trey Cochran-Gill completed his league-leading 14th save of the season to round things out in the top of the seventh and tie the club’s single-season and all-time record for saves set by Blake Ford in 2014.
Game 2: Quebec 5, Tri-City 3
The nightcap did not work out in Tri-City’s favor, as Quebec jumped out to an early lead in the first off an RBI single from Connor Panas that drove in a pair of runs. After a solo home run extended the visitors’ lead in the top of the third, the ‘Cats found the scoreboard in the bottom of the frame, with Willy Garcia sending in Juan Silverio on a sacrifice fly.
Led along by solid performances on the mound from starter Nick Horvath and Marshall Shill, Equipe Quebec again went to the long ball to add insurance with Jeffry Parra taking a two-run shot to left in the top of the sixth. Tri-City mounted a comeback with an RBI single from Silverio in the sixth and a run off an error in the seventh, but stranded 12 on the paths in the game, and could not convert in the seventh with the potential game-winning run at-bat. Right-hander Ryan McKay (1-2) suffered the loss, surrendering three runs on as many hits and striking out one in two and one third innings.
Despite the game-two loss, Tri-City continues to lead the Atlantic division over both Quebec and the New York Boulders. Continuing an effort to make up for inclement weather, the two teams will take the field for another doubleheader on Saturday, July 24, with first pitch set for 4:30 PM. Saturday will feature “In a Galaxy Far Far Away” Night, with fireworks presented by Price Chopper and Market 32. Click Here for tickets.