Photos by: Christian J. Stewart
Story by: Micah Collins
Victoria, BC – The Victoria HarbourCats defeated the Kelowna Falcons in a convincing 11-2 victory, clinching a spot in the 2023 West Coast League Playoffs Saturday night, at Wilson’s Group Stadium at Royal Athletic Park.
It was a slow start for both teams early on, scoreless for both teams through two innings. The floodgates started to open for the HarbourCats thanks to an RBI triple from who fans call “the magic man”, Ryan Magdic.
The ‘Cats then extended their lead to three with a double from second baseman Marco Pirruccello sending Russell Young and Lane Brewster to home plate.
Despite a slow offensive outing for the Falcons, outfielder Griffin Palfrey hit a solo home run to left field at the top of the fifth, the only hit for the Falcons Saturday night, extending his hits to 30 this season. Kelowna would then add another run that innings thanks to outfielder Garret Crenshaw advancing to third and home off of a couple of wild pitches.
The ‘Cats would add on three more runs in the bottom of the fifth. But took the game out of reach in the bottom of the sixth as outfielder Jesse Brown hit a no-doubter grand slam into centre field, extending the HarbourCats lead to eight runs.
Pinch hitter Brandon Green would add on to the home run show in the bottom of the seventh, hitting his second of the season, a solo home run into centre field.
The Falcons could not start another comeback as the HarbourCats extend their home record to 22-1.
HarbourCats starting pitcher Daniel Gonzalez from Louisiana Monroe took the start Saturday night, putting up an impressive outing, striking out eight batters in just over four innings of work.
Relief pitchers Cody Howard, Logan MacNiel, and local prospect Darius Opdam Bak took care of the latter half of the game, combining for six strikeouts.
Victoria and Kelowna will play one more game at Wilson’s Group Stadium at Royal Athletic Park tomorrow at 1:05PM, as the HarbourCats will be giving away a funeral that afternoon thanks to HW Wallace Cremation and Burial Centre. The ‘Cats will then play a crucial three game series at home starting on Tuesday night at 6:35PM, against island rivals, the Nanaimo NightOwls. Victoria will then hit the road to play the Edmonton Riverhawks to end their 2023 regular season.
Tickets for all remaining HarbourCats games can be bought as always at harbourcats.com/tickets or at the HarbourCats office at 101-1814 Vancouver Street.
VOUCHERS: Reminder that all ticket vouchers must be exchanged for tickets to any of our remaining four home games. They are NOT eligible for playoffs and may not be carried over to 2024.