Courtesy Vermont Lake Monsters
TROY, NY — C.J. Stubbs doubled off Lake Monsters starting second baseman Nick Ward in the bottom of the 11th inning to give the Tri-City ValleyCats a 6-5 New York-Penn League victory over Vermont Saturday night at Bruno Stadium.
Ward, who went 2-for-3 with two walks, two runs and a double, came on to pitch the bottom of the 11th after the Lake Monsters had used five pitchers over the first 10 innings. With Matthew Baarefoot placed at second base, Ward intentionally walked Zach Biermann before giving up the walkoff double to Stubbs on a 1-0 pitch.
Vermont had taken an early 4-0 lead with a run in the first inning on a Kevin Richards RBI single and then scored three unearned runs in the third as Jordan Diaz smacked a two-out, three-run homer the opposite way to right field to increase the Lake Monsters lead to 4-0.
The ValleyCats rallied to take the lead by taking advantage of six Vermont miscues to score an unearned run in the third, fourth and fifth innings to cut deficit to 4-3 before two more unearned runs in the bottom of the sixth for a 5-4 lead. Vermont had entered the game having committed just six errors total over the first eight games.
Vermont was able to tie the game 5-5 in the top of the seventh as Ward doubled with one out and came around to score on a Richards two-out RBI single that deflected off Tri-City reliever Jervic Chavez out towards second base.
Richards and Lawrence Butler both had two hits for Vermont (4-5), while starter Hogan Harris allowed two unearned runs on three hits with one walk and three strikeouts over the first 3 2/3 innings. Chavez (1-0) tossed 4 1/3 scoreless innings on one hit with two walks and three strikeouts to earn the win for Tri-City (4-4).
The Lake Monsters have now lost four straight overall and five of their last six after starting the season 3-0. Vermont will look to salvage one of the three-game series at Tri-City Sunday beginning at 5:00 pm. After an off day on Monday, the Lake Monsters open a six-game homestand at Centennial Field Tuesday.