Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Lobos pick up road win over rival Aggies

New Mexico rallied for five runs in the sixth inning to come from behind and beat its in-state rival from New Mexico State 10-9 in Las Cruces Tuesday.  It was the day's lone game involving a Mountain West softball team.

The Lobos scored in only two innings, but both were 5-run uprisings in a wild game that had a bit of everything.

There was a lengthy rain delay, bench warnings, a coaching ejection, hit batters by both teams, eight combined errors, a staggering 11 unearned runs, passed balls, wild pitches and multiple illegal pitch calls.

UNM starter Lauren Soles, the reigning Mountain West Pitcher of the Week and fresh off the first no-hitter of her collegiate career, found the going tough. Soles issued six walks in 2 1/3 innings, had some trouble with illegal pitches, and the Lobos had defensive issues with multiple miscues behind her.  Soles left the game trailing, having allowed seven runs --  two earned -- on only two hits.

New Mexico State, last in the WAC a year ago, scored three times in the first inning without benefit of a hit.  By the bottom of the second, the Aggies were leading 4-0 against Soles and the Lobos, yet still didn't have a hit.  In the third, following an ejection of a Lobos assistant coach, Naomi Tellez hit a 3-run home run as part of a 5-run New Mexico uprising. 

But in the bottom of the third, the Aggies regained the lead with four runs of their own.  Soles was replaced by pitcher Kaela DeBroeck after a walk, single, illegal pitch and another walk.  An outfield error by the Lobos, after DeBroeck entered, was the key play of that inning and put NMSU up 8-5.

Pitcher Carrie Sheehan entered in the bottom of the fifth and was the eventual winner when UNM erupted for five runs in the sixth, taking advantage of two more New Mexico State errors.  Mariah Rimmer hit a 2-run double and Kaity Ingram had a 2-run single in the frame.

The Lobos have won six of their past seven games in an impressive run following an 0-7 start to the season.