Then, everything went dark.
Play was stopped for more than an hour as the power went out at Joe Bruno Stadium. When the two teams were finally able to retake the field, Vermont decided it wanted to stay even longer, forcing extra innings. After the Lake Monsters scored in the eleventh and protected the 2-1 lead, the game was over, four hours and 16 minutes after it had started.
The delay, which lasted for 61 minutes, brought an abrupt halt to what had been a fast-paced contest; Tri-City and Vermont had completed nearly six innings in less than an hour and a half. But with dusk approaching and the lights off, play could not continue. The fans that stayed through the delay were treated to a spectacle, as players signed autographs for the fans, threw souvenirs into the crowd and enjoyed themselves outside the third-base dugout. The fireworks show, originally scheduled for after the game, was instead put on during the delay.
The ValleyCats responded to the delay with a power outage of their own. Tri-City managed only five hits on the game, all singles, and none after the fateful sixth inning.
But the player most affected by the stoppage was Quevedo, who had shown no signs of slowing down in a perfect sixth inning. At the time of the delay, Quevedo had given up just three hits and no walks, and was only at 65 pitches. But he would not be able to continue after sitting around for more than an hour.
Tri-City instead had to rely on its bullpen, which has been its biggest strength. The relievers again had a solid day, but it was not enough to overcome the ValleyCats' lack of offensive firepower.
Vermont finally managed a run in the eighth inning, doing so without the benefit of a hit. With one out, Joan Belliard hit Ronnie LaBrie with a 2-0 pitch. Rick Hughes followed with a chopper to the right of shortstop Jacke Healey, who could not control it, putting runners on first and second. Relievers Travis Blankenship and Andrew Robinson each issued a two-out walk, and the Lake Monsters tied the game at 1-1.
Vermont's second run was even harder to come by. The visitors put the leadoff runner on base in both the ninth and tenth innings, but neither time could they bring him around to score. The Lake Monsters finally broke through in the eleventh. Henry Jimenez, who had entered the game as a pinch-runner earlier, hit a ground ball through the right side. A sacrifice bunt advanced him to second, and the third batter was intentionally walked - the same pattern that had emerged in each of the last two scoreless half-innings. But pinch-hitter Justin Miller came through with a two-out single off Brendan Stines, bringing home Jimenez with the eventual game-winning run.
The 'Cats had one last attempt at a rally when Tyler Burnett walked on a full count. But Burnett was erased moments later on a failed hit-and-run with Mike Kvasnicka, and Tri-City was sent down harmlessly.
The hosts could not come through with a base hit late in the game. With the aid of five Vermont walks, the ValleyCats had the game-winning run in scoring position in the ninth and tenth. But they failed to bring anybody around, as they were held hitless through the last five innings.
The ValleyCats offense showed some life in the fourth inning. Dan Adamson singled with one out, and Tyler Burnett followed with a rocket to the right side. Unfortunately, the Adamson could not get out of the way fast enough, and the ball hit him in the hip. But Tri-City was not deterred, following with singles by Adam Bailey and Renzo Tello to score Burnett with the game's first run.
Aside from those four singles, the ValleyCats would manage only one hit the rest of the way - an Adamson line drive single in the sixth. Tri-City is now hitting below .200 as a team.
With one out in the ninth inning, Tri-City had runners on first and second and seemed poised for its second walk-off victory of the season. But righty Wilson Eusebio fanned Renzo Tello and Buck Afenir to end the rally.
Eusebio held the 'Cats scoreless in the tenth and eleventh innings to earn the victory.
The ValleyCats committed two errors, including a crucial one in the eighth. But they showed some flashes of brilliance on defense as well. Renzo Tello threw out a pair of baserunners from left field and Kvasnicka gunned down the go-ahead run in the tenth, getting the ball home in plenty of time to catch Rick Hughes at the plate. Ben Orloff added a terrific sliding catch deep in foul territory to open the fifth inning.
Tri-City allowed only two runs in eleven innings (one earned), a tremendous showing for any pitching staff. But the ValleyCat hulers walked an uncharacteristic five batters, including the two critical ones in the eighth.
But the 'Cats (2-4) know that they will have to perform much better at the plate if they want to even up the series with Vermont (5-1) tomorrow. The game time is again 7 pm - and hopefully the ballpark will stay lit.