April 1, 2005
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - New Mexico (11-18, 1-1 MWC) opened its Mountain West Conference shedule with a split of the doubleheader it hosted against UNLV (24-13, 1-1 MWC). The Lobos fell in game one 10-4 but rallied behind sophomores Amy Ray and Caley Peterson in game two for a 7-3 win.
Game one started off well for New Mexico with senior ace Ashley Perkins needing just 11 pitches to retire UNLV in the first, recording two consecutive strikeouts and a groundout. But the second inning didn't flow as smoothly as the Rebels pushed three runs across the plate. The bases were loaded with two out when Amber Campbell tripled to right center field, clearing the bases and giving UNLV a 3-0 lead. One inning later, Morgan Bostwick doubled the score, launching a three-run homer to make it 6-0 in favor of the Rebels.
Freshman Lindsey Elcess shot back in the bottom of the third, blasting a three-run home run over the right field fence, making it her third home run in as many games. Sophomores Ryanne Hodgins and Amy Ray scored, having singled and walked, respectively, prior to Elcess' at bat.
But UNLV continued to hit with ease, putting up four more runs in the fourth, causing head coach Kim Newbern to replace Perkins with junior Katie Gregg. Still in the fourth with an inherited runner and two outs, Gregg ended the inning without further damage.
Elcess would homer again in the fifth to score the fourth and final run of the game. But that is all New Mexico could get as UNLV stud Jacque Kerrigan tamed the Lobos. Kerrigan threw a six-hit complete game, allowing four earned runs, two walks and four strikeouts.
Elcess finished the game 2-for-3 with four RBI and two runs scored while Hodgins was 2-for-4 with one run scored. Gregg allowed just one hit, one walk and one strikeout in her three and one-third innings of relief.
Gregg came back out to start game two but was quickly removed after giving up four hits and three runs without retiring a batter. Peterson threw seven scoreless innings in relief, allowing just three hits with no walks while sitting down four for her second win of the season.
Ray and Elcess quickly chipped away at the UNLV lead as both scored after getting on base with singles. New Mexico erased the deficit on one wacky play in the second. Junior Cassie Chavez singled up the middle with the bases loaded to drive in sophomore Liz Young. But a throwing error by UNLV's Pauline Glenn at third allowed Chavez to take second, Elcess to move to third and Hodgins to score. The Rebels' center fielder Brittany Freight grabbed the ball but also misfired for the second error of the inning, allowing Elcess and Chavez to score, giving UNM a 6-3 lead.
Junior Kristina Schmallen would drive in an insurance run in the fourth, singling to left field. Ray scored after leading off the inning with an infield single.
Ray finished the game 3-for-3 with two runs scored while Schmalled finished 2-for-2 with a RBI.
New Mexico returns to the field on Sunday at 1 p.m., hosting San Diego State for the second twin bill of the weekend.