Photos from the 2013 Cherry-Silver Series at Lobo Field
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – A three-run bottom of the seventh forced extra innings in the final game of the 2013 Cherry-Silver series, but neither side was able to push across a run in the extra frame and the game ended in a 4-4 draw.
Leading 4-1 entering the bottom of the final inning, Silver saw its lead evaporate as Cherry pushed three runs across, with the final two being unearned.
In the bottom of the eighth, Tyler Kamtz led off with a double for Cherry, and a sacrifice bunt pushed him to third, but a strikeout and a groundout ended the threat, the inning, and the series. Silver won the series with a 3-1-1 record.
Head coach Ray Birmingham was pleased with his team’s effort throughout the series.
“We lost a lot of talent (from last season),” he said. “I think we’ll end up swinging the bats as well as we have in the past, but there’s a lot of young kids in the lineup. It’s going to be on (Ryan) Padilla and (Alex) Real and (Chase) Harris and (John) Pustay and (Sam) Haggerty to carry the load offensively for a while. I think they’re capable of doing it.”
Despite being the premier hitting coach in the country, Birmingham always preaches two things that are always linked: pitching and defense.
“The pitching and defense looked pretty good,” he said. “We’ve got a lot more team speed. I’m excited. We’re going to do it the way it needs to be done to get to Omaha (and the College World Series), and that’s pitching and defense.
“Somebody has to emerge as the Friday night guy and the Saturday night guy and the Sunday night guy. I think (Drew) Bridges and (Josh) Walker are obviously two of those candidates, but there are several candidates who have a very good shot of being the third guy. The thing that we do have is we an entire pitching staff. We have a whole group of guys you wouldn’t hesitate to run out there. It’s the best overall pitching staff I’ve seen since I’ve been here.”The Lobos will now break from organized team activities until the new year. UNM opens the 2014 season on the road at the University of San Diego on Friday, Feb. 14. The team’s home opener comes against Northern Illinois on Friday, Feb. 21 in the Lobo Invite at Lobo Field.