May 16, 2013
SAN DIEGO, Calif. – The 16th-ranked University of New Mexico baseball team used key hits to manufacture big innings as it defeated the San Diego St. Aztecs 14-6 Thursday night. The Lobos (33-18, 23-5) set a school record for conference wins in a season.
DJ Peterson, who was named a Dick Howser Trophy semifinalist earlier in the day, had a three-run, two-out double in a six-run third, and Luke Campbell hit his second grand slam of the season in a five-run seventh.
The Lobos pounded out 11 hits and drew nine walks and only left five men on base as they made the most of their opportunities against the Aztecs (26-26, 15-13).
In the third Alex Allbritton singled with one out. Jared Holley followed with a walk and Chase Harris singled to center to load the bases. One batter later the bases were still loaded with two outs for Peterson. He ripped a 1-1 pitch to left to clear the bases and give UNM the early lead. Mitch Garver then knocked him home with a single to right center, and Alex Real followed with a two-run homer to left on an 0-1 pitch to make the score 6-0.
The Aztecs closed the gap with two runs in the bottom of the third and one in the bottom of the fifth, but UNM put the game away in the seventh.
Sam Haggerty led off with an infield single. One batter later Garver walked and Alex Real followed with a single to load the bases. Josh Melendez then worked a five-pitch walk to force in a run. The Aztecs changed pitchers after that, but it didn’t help as Campbell smashed an 0-2 pitch over the left-center field fence for a grand slam to make the score 11-3.
A bases-loaded walk by Campbell, a single by Allbritton and a sacrifice fly by Holley in the ninth finished the scoring for the Lobos. Campbell finished 2-for-4 with five RBI as he extended his hitting streak to 12 games, including 11 multi-hit games. Real also went 2-for-4 with two runs and two RBI. Garver went just 1-for-2 but walked three times and scored three runs. Allbritton led the team with three hits.
Josh Walker made his second start of the season on the mound for UNM and allowed three runs in five innings. It wasn’t as dominating as his three-hit shutout he posted last Friday against Fresno St., but it was enough for him to move to 10-0 on the season, which ties him with Danny Ray Herrera for the second most wins in a season without a loss in school history. His career record also improved to 18-3 (.857), the best winning percentage a Lobo has ever had.
Jake McCasland followed and pitched two innings of shutout relief, striking out four in the process.
With a win in either of their final two games, the Lobos will clinch the series, which would give UNM a victory in every Mountain West series this season. Senior Sam Wolff will start on the mound for the Lobos Friday with first pitch set for 7 p.m. (MT). ESPN Radio 101.7 The Team will carry the game live with Robert Portnoy, the voice of the Lobos, providing the play-by-play.
Notes: Campbell’s other home run came at Air Force on April 6 … Peterson’s double was the 76th of his career, two shy of the UNM record … Peterson also has 192 career RBI, only six behind Aaron Sisk for fourth all-time at UNM … Dean Duane went 14-0 for the Lobos in 1985 … UNM’s previous high for conference wins in a season was 22 in the MW’s inaugural season in 2000.