April 15, 2011
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - The Lobos went hit-for-hit with the Utah Utes, but for the third-straight game they couldn't produce the runs to go along with the hits, as they lost the game by a score of 7-1.
UNM freshman starting pitcher Jake McCasland looked great in the first and second innings, sitting down the Utes in order in both. When the third inning rolled around, however, McCasland seemed to lose his command, issuing two walks and a wild pitch that came back to bite him for four runs. Shortstop James Brooks, second baseman Michael Beltran and first baseman C.J. Cron all had back-to-back-to-back RBIs for the Utes in the inning, with the other run scoring on the wild pitch. "The big inning was the difference maker," Head Coach Ray Birmingham said.
"The biggest thing is consistency and we can't seem to get the big hit."
UNM plated just one run on ten hits over the course of the game. The one run came off an RBI double in the eighth by freshman first baseman DJ Peterson. Junior second baseman Kyle 'Beep' Stiner had the best offensive night for the Lobos, as he went 3-for-4 and scored the Lobos only run.
"It's frustrating, because when you look at the score it doesn't look like it was a good game," Stiner said, "but a few hits for us here and there, and we are right in that ballgame."
Utah senior starting pitcher Rick Anton had a very nice game, throwing seven shutout innings while allowing seven hits to go along with seven strikeouts. He did his job by bending and not breaking, letting the Lobos get hits, just not in key situations.
The Utes added to their lead in the fifth when Cron, the Mountain West Conference's top hitter, blasted a two-run bomb to left center, putting Utah ahead, 6-0.
"That kid is pretty special," Birmingham said in reference to Cron. "He golfed a changeup down and away and just hit it like a man."
Utah added one more in the seventh, while UNM' s Peterson drove in UNM's only run in the eighth, giving the game a final score of 7-1, in favor of the Utes.
The Lobos' McCasland gets the loss, while Utah's Anton picks up the victory.
UNM falls to 10-25 (5-5 MWC) and Utah improves to 14-13 on the year (7-4, MWC).
Tomorrow's game is slated for a 6 p.m. MT start and will feature right-handed freshman Alexis Garza (0-2, 3.67 ERA) for the Lobos and sophomore righty Joe Pond (3-4, 6.06 ERA) for the Utes.