March 20, 2005
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Senior Ashley Shartzer belted a mile-high walk-off home run in the sixth inning to give New Mexico a 10-2 six-inning win in the second game of the day at the Fairfield Inn Lobo Softball Classic.
Senior Cassie Chavez started the Lobos off on the right foot, sending a two-out two-run homer over the left field fence in the first inning. Junior Kristina Schmallen scored on the play after a single to left center in the at bat before Chavez.
Liberty struck back in the fourth with two runs of its own. Shannon McKain tripled to right center, driving in Beth Hensley, who led off the inning by reaching on an error. Three batters later, Tiffany Johnson singled through the left side, picking up the RBI as McKain scored.
New Mexico took back the lead in the fifth as Schmallen doubled to right field with one out and then scored off of freshman Christina Rios' RBI single down the right field line.
Liberty pitcher Sarah Swor, who started game one of the day as well, was just two worn down to be effective in the sixth. She started the inning, allowing a right-field single to freshman Lindsey Elcess. One out later, sophomore Ryanne Hodgins singled down the left field line to put runners are first and second base. Sophomore Amy Ray followed with a full-count walk to load the bases. Schmallen then scooted down the line to reach on a throwing error that let Elcess and Hodgins score and move Ray to third base. Chavez came up with her first triple of the season, sending the ball up to the fence in right center giving Ray plenty of time to score. Rios followed with a double to right center, driving in Chavez. Up by six, Shartzer stepped to the plate and sent the ball over the fence in right center to end the game on the eight-run mercy rule.
Sophomore Caley Peterson earned her first win as a Lobo, throwing a complete game for six hits, one earned run, four walks and five strikeouts. Swor took the loss, throwing 5.1 innings for 12 hits, nine earned runs, three walks and two strikeouts.
The Lobos outhit the Flames, 12-6 with every Lobo except Ray picking up a hit. Elcess was perfect at the plate, going 2-for-2 with one run scored. Schmallen, Chavez and Rios were all 2-for-4. Schmallen scored three runs and had one RBI, Chavez scored two runs with four RBI and Rios scored one run with two RBI.
The final game of the tournament between New Mexico and Texas Tech was cancelled due to the Red Raiders'travel plans. Texas Tech and New Mexico are co-champions of the tournament but Tech will take home the championship trophy with one more win that New Mexico. The Red Raiders finished the tournament 4-0, New Mexico 3-0, New Mexico State 1-3 and Liberty 0-5.
Both New Mexico and Texas Tech had four athletes make the all-tournament team. Tech was represented by Whitney Riley, Julie Hauck, Eric Crawford and tournament MVP Jennifer Bowers. Senior Ashley Perkins, Schmallen, Chavez and Hodgins made the team for New Mexico. Other all-tournament members were New Mexico State's Sarah Seagraves and Liberty's Ashley Williams and Jessica Moore.
New Mexico will return to the field Friday, March 25, hosting New Mexico State for a doubleheader. First pitch is scheduled for 2:30 p.m.