TROY, NY (NEWS10) — The Empire State Greys began a three-game stay at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium on Friday night, kicking off the weekend series with the Tri-City ValleyCats.
Olbis Parra would take the mound for Tri-City, opposing him was right hander Jay Palais.
The right hander would surrender just one hit to the Greys offense to begin the game, a single from third baseman Manny Garcia. Trey Woosley would reach base on a fielder’s choice. The first baseman would be left stranded at first when Willies Estrada grounded out to end their first turn at bat. Tri-City would threaten to score during the home half of the first inning, but a Brad Zunica strike out would strand two runners on for the ‘Cats.
Parra would retire Empire State in order in the second, striking out two of the three batters he faced. In the second half of the inning, Carson McCusker would lead off with a roaring double down the left field line. Jesus Lujano would ground out to Empire State’s second baseman, Robbie Carling to move McCusker over to third base. ‘Cats catcher Austin Elder would drive in the first run of the game on a ground out, plating McCusker and giving Tri-City the early lead.
The Greys offense would come alive in the top of the fourth inning. Trey Woosley would launch a double into left center field, and Willies Estrada followed suit with a single of his own, putting runners on the corners with one away. Olbis Parra would misfire a breaking ball, bringing home Woosley from third base, tying the game. Hioki Itakura would single later on in the inning, driving home Estrada from second and giving Empire State the 2-1 lead.
The ‘Cats would get the run back immediately in the bottom half of the fourth inning when Denis Phipps would launch a Jay Palais fastball deep over the left field fence. A solo shot that was his 27th of the season. The long ball also tied the game at two.
Empire State would strike back with a pair of runs in the top of the fifth inning. A sacrifice fly from Manny Garcia and Trey Woosley’s second double of the night each drove a run in, giving the Greys a 4-2 cushion.
Following back to back fly outs from Mitch Piatnik and Cito Culver to lead off the home half of the fifth inning, Brantley Bell extended his hitting streak to 24 games with a two-out double. Third baseman Pavin Parks would drive Bell in, bringing Tri-City just one run away from tying the game.
Brac Warren and Jose Cruz combined for five strikeouts over two innings of work with Warren striking out the side in the sixth, and Jose Cruz striking out two of the four batters he faced in the seventh. Cruz would surrender the only hit recorded by the Greys from the fifth inning on.
Following Culver’s single to lead off the seventh inning, Pavin Parks and Brad Zunica would walk to load the bases with two away. Carson McCusker would hit a hard ground ball over to Garcia at third, he would ultimately mis-play the ground ball, allowing a run to score without a throw, tying the game. During Jesus Lujano’s at bat, Greys reliever Jesus Rosario would fire a pitch behind the ‘Cats left fielder allowing Parks to score giving Tri-City a 5-4 lead.
Adam Hofacket and Trey Cochran-Gill would work scoreless eighth and ninth frames, closing the door on any possibility of a Empire State comeback.