April 1, 2008
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. --- New Mexico softball is 15-12 overall and opens Mountain West Conference action Thursday at BYU. The Lobos are slated for a doubleheader against the Cougars in Provo, Utah starting at 6 p.m. The games will be televised on CBS College Sports Network (formerly CSTV) with Tom Hart and Ann Schatz providing the announcing. UNM concludes the road-trip at Utah on Friday and Saturday. Gametracker will be available for all games this week.
Lobo Sighting - New Mexico is hitting .270 as a team and has three players with an average over .300. Senior Lindsey Elcess leads the team and the MWC with a .405 averaging while redshirt-freshman Gabriella Parra is hitting .400. Elcess and Parra have provided most of the offensive production while sophomore Sara Loeffelholz has been a steady contributor. Loeffelholz has a .337 average with four home runs and 16 RBI.
Pitching Report - Kelly Ninemire has been the No. 1 option for Ty Singleton and has made 22 appearances. Ninemire, a senior from Prosper, Texas, is 10-8 overall with a 3.51 ERA. She has pitched 101 2/3 innings for New Mexico and has 87 strikeouts. Freshman Kyla Nelson was the No. 2 pitcher in the rotation before getting hurt during the Oklahoma State series earlier this year. Nelson is expected back sometime this spring but a timeline has not been set. Freshman Madelyn Machac has tried to fill the No. 2 spot but continues to adjust to the Division I level. Machac is 2-1 overall with a 5.73 ERA and recently made her best collegiate outing against Texas State. The Albuquerque native, pitched six innings against the Bobcats allowing eight hits and allowing five unearned runs. Sophomore Tori Rogers has seen time but has not been traveling this season.
Last Week Review - New Mexico enters Mountain West Conference with a 15-12 overall mark and looks to rebound after going 1-2 last week in Texas. UNM defeated UTSA, 15-7, last Thursday in a slugfest. The Lobos hammered four home runs against the Roadrunners including a three-run bomb by senior Lindsey Elcess. Elcess belted her team-leading ninth of the year over the scoreboard in left field. UNM finished the weekend at Texas State but dropped two against the Bobcats. The Lobos received quality pitching performances from senior Kelly Ninemire and freshman Madelyn Machac but defensively couldn't hold it together. New Mexico committed eight errors in two games against Texas State including five Saturday. The series finale set for Sunday was cancelled due to field conditions and rain in the San Marco area.
Elcess Tops MWC - Senior Lindsey Elcess ranks among the best in the Mountain West Conference. Elcess is in the top 10 in five categories including batting average (1st/.405), on-base percentage (1st/.500), slugging (2nd/.824), home runs (4th/9) and total bases (7th/61).
Elcess Continues To Climb Career Charts - Senior Lindsey Elcess is hitting .405 this season and ranks among the best to wear a UNM uniform. Elcess has four doubles and nine home runs this season and continues to climb the all-time charts. Elcess is tied for second on the all-time home run list with 27 career bombs and needs 10 to become the UNM all-time leader. The Tucson, Ariz., native, ranks seventh on the all-time doubles list with 32 and is third all-time with 106 RBI.
Lobos - Cougars Series - Thursday marks the 39th time the two schools have played on the softball diamond. BYU leads the all-time series 25-13 and has won the last 13 games. The last victory for UNM in Provo was on April 26, 2003. The Lobos defeated BYU, 4-3, in the second game of a doubleheader.
Utah Series - New Mexico faces Utah Friday and Saturday to end a four-game road trip. The Lobos are 29-61-1 all-time against the Utes but managed to sweep a doubleheader in Salt Lake City last season.
Tracking The Cougars - BYU is 20-12 on the season and have won eight of its last nine games. The Cougars are hitting .293 as a team and have belted 37 home runs as a team. BYU has five batters hitting over .300 including Daniela Snow who leads the team with a .392 average. Snow leads the team with 31 RBI and is second with 10 doubles and nine home runs. Angeline Quiocho leads the team with 11 homers and has a .379 batting average. The Cougars have used as many as five pitchers this season but typically rotate three in the circle. Christina Trice has emerged as the ace after pitching 89 2/3 innings with 130 strikeouts. Trice has made 21 appearances and has an 8-4 record with a 1.09 ERA. 2007 All-MWC selection Christie Zinanti is back and has a 7-6 overall mark with a 3.64 ERA. Paige Affleck has a 1.76 ERA and a 5-2 record in 47 2/3 innings. BYU is coached by Gordon Eakin who is 221-103 entering the UNM series.
Utah Report - The Utes are 17-16 under first year head coach Amy Hogue and have lost two of their last three games. Utah plays Colorado State Thursday in a doubleheader in Salt Lake City. The Utes are hitting .258 as a team and are 2-0 at home this season. Diana Phillips (.388) and Kara Foster (.337) lead the team offensively. Foster has a team-leading 10 home runs. Ashley Smuda is 10-8 in the circle with a 2.95 ERA and Brittany Parker has a 2.83 ERA and a 7-8 record.
On The Horizon - Following this week's trip to Utah, the Lobos travel to Las Cruces, N.M., to battle New Mexico State. The game is scheduled for April 8 starting at 6:30 p.m. and will be part of the Rio Grande Rivalry. UNM and NMSU play twice this season in the nation's longest softball rivalry. The game on April 8 will be the 131st meeting between the two schools with UNM holding a 83-47-0 series advantage.
Next MWC Series - The Lobos host Colorado State on April 12-13 in Albuquerque at Lobo Field. UNM is slated to play the Rams on Saturday starting at 7 p.m. before Sunday's 1 p.m. start.