March 19, 2013
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The University of New Mexico baseball team split its doubleheader with the Missouri St. Bears Tuesday at Isotopes Park. UNM (9-11) rallied to win game one 6-5 in 11 innings before the Bears (14-6) stormed back to take game two by a score of 8-2.
“Missouri St. is a really good baseball program,” UNM head coach Ray Birmingham said. “Their M.O. is they can really pitch and they showed that tonight.”
UNM collected nine hits in each game, but its damage was limited by an effective Bear pitching staff.
In game two the Lobos were unable to get the Bears out and were unable to generate any consistent offense, a poor combination that led to a lopsided loss.
Campbell finished the day 4-for-10 with two runs to break an 0-for-21 slide. Garver also had four hits in six at bats as he extended his hitting streak to a career-long 19 games.
The Lobos return to Mountain West play this weekend with a three-game series against Nevada at Isotopes Park. First pitch Friday is set for 6 p.m.
"You figure it out the first couple weeks and as conference starts coming around you start learning who we are as a team and the young guys figure out what they can do to help us win," Garver said.
Game One: Lobos 6, Missouri St. 5 (11 innings)
The first game was largely one of missed opportunities for the Lobos. They had the bases loaded in the fifth, eighth, and ninth innings, but couldn’t push even one run across any time.
UNM fell behind early as the Bears jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the third inning. The Lobos didn’t even manage a hit of Missouri St. starter Andy Cheray until the fourth. Once they got a hit, however, they managed to score some runs.
With one out in the fourth, Garver singled up the middle to extend his career-best hitting streak to 18 games. A walk, a single, and three hit batters later the Lobos had tied the score. But with the bases loaded and only one out Peterson popped up and Luke Campbell struck out swinging.
The Bears struck for two the next inning, but UNM answered with a run of its own courtesy of a sacrifice fly by Alex Allbritton. Then in the seventh Peterson hit his 11th home run of the season to tie the game at 5-5.
That’s where the score remained until the 11th as the Lobo bullpen was solid. Campbell led off with a single, stole second, and advanced to third on a wild pitch. That’s where he remained one batter later when Garver dropped a ball just fair down the left-field line to score Campbell and send the Lobos home victorious.
“The first game was a real battle,” Garver said. “A few of our guys did a few good things. Some of our pitchers threw well.”
“Walker and Gabe Aguilar came in and did a really good job,” Garver said. “Gabe has been really consistent for us this year and that’s big. We’ve got a lefty that goes out there, he’s a bulldog, and he throws strikes.”
Birmingham was pleased with the way his team battled and came out on top.
“We won another extra-inning game, which is a good omen,” he said.
Game Two: Missouri St. 8, Lobos 2
Each team scored one in the first inning of the nightcap. The Bears scored on a sacrifice fly, while Peterson drove in Chase Harris, who had tripled leading off, with a groundout.
Missouri St. then added three in the fourth and four in the fifth to put the game out of reach.
“We kind of started feeling the fatigue of the doubleheader (in those innings),” Garver said. “They got a single here, a groundball there, a flare there, and before you know it they have two or three runs on the board.”
Victory Sanchez and Anthony Consiglio followed and combined to throw 2 1/3 shutout innings, but by then the damage had already been done.
Wildness was the staff’s main problem as they walked seven and threw four wild pitches
Garver singled in the fourth to extend his hitting streak to a career-high 19 games and Jared Holley doubled in the fifth for the first extra-base hit of his career, but those were about the only highlights for the Lobos as they failed in their quest to reach the .500 mark for the first time since Feb. 22.
Campbell scored on an RBI triple by Erik Suarez in the eighth for the Lobos’ other run. It was the first hit and RBI of the season for Suarez.
Notes: Jared Holley doubled in game two for his first career extra-base hit … game one’s starter Alex Estrella threw three wild pitches giving UNM’s staff a total of seven on the day … UNM matched a season high by getting hit by six pitches in game one … Suarez’s triple was the first of his career … after losing their first three extra-inning games of the season the Lobos have won their last two.