LOWELL, MA - The Tri-City ValleyCats took home a win in their fifth doubleheader of the 2019 season Thursday evening. The 'Cats took game one over Stedler Division rival Lowell, 6-3, before falling, 7-2, in the night cap to the newly-crowned 2019 division champions.
Looking to stay in contention to tie the season series with a sweep, the ValleyCats (29-41) overcame a late-game deficit with a crooked frame in the top of the sixth to win game one.
Following a 1-1 tie after one inning due to an RBI single from Nate Perry and a bases loaded walk issued to Lowell (39-33) the Spinners plated a run over each of the next two innings to capture a 3-1 lead.
The advantage stood until the top of the sixth, when Tri-City exploded for five runs to take hold of a lead that they would never relinquish. Luis Santana and Joe Perez send in runs off RBI singles, while Perry and Korey Lee were issued walks with the bases loaded to complete the comeback.
Coming in following a one-run inning to start on the mound from Kyle Serrano, right-hander Edgardo Sandoval (2-3) took the game over with eight strikeouts and just a pair of runs allowed off three hits in six innings, recording the longest outing of the 'Cats' season to-date.
Lowell's Ryan Fernandez (3-1) took the loss in 1.2 innings of relief, allowing the game's final five runs off four hits while striking out one and walking a pair.
With the divisional title and a berth in the 2019 New York-Penn League playoffs on the line, the Spinners got to work immediately into the second game, plating five runs in the bottom of the first off a balk, an RBI single, a wild pitch and a bases loaded walk.
With two more runs coming in favor of the home team in the second and the fourth, the 'Cats' only offensive bright spot of the contest came in the top of the fourth, with Lee rocketing a ball to left center field for his third home run of the season.
Left-hander Chris Murphy (1-1) picked up his first professional win on the mound for the Spinners, allowing a pair of hits off as many runs while walking and striking out a batter each in four innings.
Manny Ramirez (0-2) was tagged with the loss for Tri-City, allowing five runs (three earned) off three hits in just two-thirds of an inning, while walking a pair and striking out one.
Following the split, the ValleyCats will conclude the season series with the Spinners on Friday, August 30, with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. from Edward A LaLacheur Park.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.