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Brad Zunica's Nine RBI Night Leads Tri-City To Victory

'Cats First Baseman Rips Two Grand Slams In Win
August 3, 2022

TROY, NY - The Tri-City ValleyCats started a six-game occupancy at The Joe on Tuesday night, welcoming the Ottawa Titans to Joseph L. Bruno Stadium for the first of three games. Joey Gonzalez took the mound looking for his seventh victory of the 2022 season, opposing him was right hander

TROY, NY - The Tri-City ValleyCats started a six-game occupancy at The Joe on Tuesday night, welcoming the Ottawa Titans to Joseph L. Bruno Stadium for the first of three games.

Joey Gonzalez took the mound looking for his seventh victory of the 2022 season, opposing him was right hander Jose Tavares, who boasted a perfect 5-0 record coming into Tuesday evening's matchup.

The Titans would strike first, a three-run home run off the bat of third baseman AJ Wright gave Ottawa an early lead. However that's all the offensive production the Titans would muster in the game.

Following a quiet first inning against Tavares, Brad Zunica would rip a solo home run on the first pitch he would see into deep right field, cutting the lead to 3-1. In the bottom of the third, Cito Culver would double to lead off the inning, Pavin Parks would single, advancing Culver to second. Denis Phipps would follow Parks with a walk, loading the bases for the ValleyCats first baseman. Tavares would leave a change up in the middle of the zone, allowing Zunica to drive it over the center field fence. Zunica's grand slam would plate his fifth RBI of the contest. Carson McCusker would cap off a five-run third inning with a 463 foot shot that left Joseph L. Bruno Stadium in its entirety.

The 'Cats would extend their lead to 7-3 on an RBI single from left fielder Jesus Lujano in the bottom of the fifth inning, the only run driven in on the night that did not come by the way of the long ball. The 'Cats offense would remain stagnant in the sixth and seventh innings, only mustering a walk in the sixth by Pavin Parks.

Following five and a third innings pitched from Gonzalez, the bullpen combination of Adam Hofacket, Neil Abbatiello, and Brett Hanewich would hold the Ottawa offense scoreless, only surrendering two hits over two and two thirds innings of work.

Taking the 7-3 lead into their final at bat in the bottom of the eighth, Austin Elder would launch his first home run as a member of the ValleyCats, a solo shot to deep right center field. Kaleb Schmidt would walk Cito Culver, then Brantley Bell would extend his hitting streak to 16 games with a single. Phipps would work his second walk of the contest, loading the bases yet again for Zunica. The left hander would destroy a fastball from Schmidt into deep left center field, capping off Zunica's three home run, nine RBI night.

Brac Warren would come in and retire the Titans in order to secure the series opening victory.

FINAL | (36-31) TRI-CITY 12 (40-28) OTTAWA 3

W: JOEY GONZALEZ (7-1)

L: JOSE TAVERAS (5-1)

SV: NONE

ATTENDANCE: 3,456

The ValleyCats take on the Ottawa Titans in the middle stanza of their three game set tomorrow night at The Joe! Join us for Irish Night presented by TD Bank. Get your tickets today by calling 518-629-CATS, visiting the team’s box office, or logging on to tcvalleycats.com.