ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. –The University of New Mexico baseball team fell 6-1 to the Missouri State Bears in the second day of the Lobo Invite. UNM (3-3) outhit MSU (5-1) 7-4 but was unable to come up with a big hit when the Lobos needed it most.
The Bears struck first with a single, a sacrifice bunt and a double in the first. The Lobos rallied to tie it in the second on an RBI single by Ryan Padilla that scored Jared Holley, who had reached on a fielder’s choice.
The game changed in the middle innings, and unfortunately for the Lobos, it did not change in their favor.
UNM had the first chance to break the tie with a golden opportunity in the bottom of the fifth. With one out, Andre Vigil doubled off the wall to straightaway center ahead of walks by Aaron Siple and Sam Haggerty. That brought up Chase Harris, who was 2-for-2 at that point.
He got a good pitch to hit but got it off the end of the bat, and his looping liner was caught by the shortstop for the second out. Alex Real then grounded out to first to end the inning.
The Bears had their opportunity in the top of the sixth, and they made theirs count, scoring five runs on just one hit. That hit, though, was a big one: a grand slam down the right-field line off the bat of MSU’s second baseman, Eric Cheray that just cleared the fence.
Harris and Vigil led the Lobos offensively with two hits apiece.
Colton Thomson started for the Lobos and allowed three runs on two hits and three walks in 5.1 innings. He struck out four and has allowed just three hits through his first 10.2 innings this season.
The Lobos will play a doubleheader Sunday. The first game will be a rematch with Missouri State at 10 a.m. Game two will pit UNM against Northern Illinois, whom the Lobos defeated 12-0 Friday night. That game will follow approximately 45 minutes after the conclusion of game one.
Both games will be streamed live at golobos.com and game one will also be broadcast by ESPN Radio 101.7 The TEAM. Sophomore righty Mike Gould will make his first career start in the opener while senior Josh Walker, a 2014 Preseason All-American, will get the nod versus the Huskies.
Notes: In the first game Saturday, Missouri Statedefeated Northern Illinois 11-0 … the nightcap was completed in a brisk 2:31 … the announced attendance was 798 as fans got in for free.