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'Cats' Offense Explodes, Take Series Opener Against Greys

September 2, 2022 - Frontier League (FL) - Tri-City ValleyCats News Release


TROY, NY - The Empire State Greys and Tri-City ValleyCats kicked off the final series of the regular season Friday night at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium.

Right Hander Kyle Arjona took the mound for the 'Cats, while ambidextrous pitcher Misuki Akatsuka took the mound for Empire State.

Empire State would get to Arjona in the early stages of the game, scoring two runs in the first inning, singles from both Willies Estrada and Jordan Holloman-Scott both plated a run. In the second, the visitors would tack on a third run against Arjona, this time an RBI single from Robbie Carling.

Tri-City's offense would start off quiet, only having Cito Culver and Jesus Lujano reach base in the first two innings.

Empire State would add to their lead during the third inning, a John Benevolent RBI fielder's choice brought home the fourth Greys run of the game, giving the visiting team an early cushion.

The 'Cats offense would get going in the home half of the third inning, sending ten batters to the plate. An RBI single from Pavin Parks plated two runners, cutting the Greys lead in half. Brad Zunica would record an RBI single himself, making it a one-run lead. Carson McCusker would follow Zunica with an RBI double, tying the game at four.

Following a quiet fourth inning for both offenses, John Benevolent would break the tie with an opposite field, two-run home run against reliever Brett Hanewich, regaining the lead for Empire State.

Brad Zunica would record his second hit of the night with one out in the fifth inning, a double that put him in scoring position. Following a McCusker ground out, Jesus Lujano would work a walk, putting two on for Campagna. The 'Cats left fielder would double down the left field line, plating both runners to reclaim the lead, taking a 7-6 advantage into the later innings.

Both offenses would go quiet during the sixth and seventh innings. Jose Cruz would retire Empire State in order during the top half of the eighth, carrying a one-run lead into the bottom of the inning.

The 'Cats would bat around for the second time this game, this time sending 11 batsmen to the dish. Following a lead off double to Austin Bernard, Greys reliever Jesus Rosario would walk both Cito Culver and Brantley Bell, loading the bases for Pavin Parks. An infield single would plate Bernard, adding to the 'Cats lead. Denis Phipps would get in on the action with an RBI single of his own, bringing both Culver and Bell in to score. Brad Zunica's third hit of the night came during the eighth inning rally, a cue shot single that plated Parks. An RBI single from Jesus Lujano would plate the fifth run of the inning, giving Tri-City a 12-6 lead they would never surrender.

Right handed reliever Brac Warren would record a scoreless top of the ninth inning to shut the door and secure the victory for Tri-City.

FINAL | (52-41) TRI-CITY 12 (6-88) EMPIRE STATE 6

W: JOSE CRUZ (2-7)

L: MIZUKI AKATSUKA (1-5)

SV: CODY WHITTEN (1)

ATTENDANCE: 2.823


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