UNM Softball Opens 2008 Season Against Evansville at Lobo Field
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  02/06/2008
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

Feb. 6, 2008

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - New Mexico softball opens the 2008 season Saturday, Feb. 9 against Evansville. The Lobos host the Purple Aces in a doubleheader Saturday at 1 p.m. and a single-game Sunday at 1 p.m. The games will be held at the newly renovated Lobo Field. Saturday will be the first meeting between the two schools.

Lobos Return Talented Roster - New Mexico returns six starters and two pitchers from 2007 and are loaded for another successful campaign. Junior Analise Rubalcava is back after hitting .393 and was the only All-Mountain West Conference selection last season. Along with Rubalcava, seniors Lindsey Elcess and Ashley Allen return with junior Samantha Hughes and sophomores Katie Gilmore and Sara Loeffelholz. Senior Kelly Ninemire heads into her final season as the No. 1 starter with freshman Kyla Nelson listed as the No. 2.

Scouting The Purple Aces - Evansville is coming off a 33-20 season and return a lot of talent in 2008. The Purple Aces have eight returning starters back including four seniors. Jacki Bradley who was one of their top pitchers last year returns. Bradley is a left-handed pitcher who had an 11-6 overall record and a 2.23 ERA in 2007. She also hit three home runs and had 19 RBI in 37 games. The top two hitters for Evansville are back in Brittany Herald and Laura Rather. Herald led the team in almost every offensive catagory and was named first team All-Missouri Valley. Rather hit .352 with 10 home runs and 13 doubles last season. The Purple Aces are coached by Gwen Lewis who is in her 17th year.

Lobo Field Receives Needed Upgrade - The newly renovated softball facility has given Lobo Field a new look and the players a comfortable space to call their own. A new field surface has been installed as well as a new infield dirt. There will be two 500 seat grandstands in left and right center along with a berm located behind the centerfield fence. New electronic scoreboards will be located along the foul lines. The new look allows Lobo Field to be one of the top fields in the country.

UNM Plays Nationally-Ranked Opponents - The Lobos face seven opponents this season who are ranked in the USA Today/National Fastpitch Coaches Association Top 25 Preseason Poll. UNM travels to Tucson, Ariz. to play a three-game series against back-to-back National Champions Arizona. The Wildcats are currently ranked No. 1 coming into the season. The Lobos host No. 11 Washington and No. 25 Missouri in the Lobo Invitational here at Lobo Field on Feb. 23. They meet No. 17 Georgia Tech and No. 5 Alabama in the Bama Bash in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Feb. 15-17. The Lobos face No. 3 Arizona State and No. 21 Cal State Fullerton, and the USA Softball Team when they travel to Fullerton, Calif., to take part in the Judy Garman classic from March 19-22.

Don't Miss The Lobos Live - Catch the Lobos live every home game by visiting all-access on www.GoLobos.com. All-Access offers play-by-play from the "Voice of the Lobos" Mike Roberts and color commentary by Chris Deal. Gametracker will be available with up-to-date scores and statistics for the Lobos. For more information visit www.GoLobos.com.

Lobo Softball Picked Fourth In Preseason MWC Poll - New Mexico softball has been selected fourth in the Mountain West Conference preseason poll. The Lobos are tied with Colorado State for fourth after receiving 13 points apiece. BYU, who won the 2007 regular-season championship, was predicted to win the league with San Diego State finishing second and UNLV third. The final spot in the poll belongs to Utah after only receiving five points. The six league coaches voted in the poll.