March 19, 2011
SAN DIEGO, Calif. - The Lobos put together an incredible comeback bid after falling behind 9-0 in the first inning to San Diego State, but they couldn't quite pull it out as they lost by a final score of 13-10.
The Aztecs struck first as first baseman Jomel Torres smacked an RBI single to left center off Lobos' starting freshman pitcher Jake McCasland. On the very next at-bat, left fielder Chris Wilson knocked an RBI single to left center, giving the Aztecs a 2-0 lead. McCasland surrendered two more runs in the first inning before being replaced by sophomore Bobby Mares. With just one out, Mares inherited a bases loaded situation after replacing McCasland. Mares couldn't overcome the stacked odds, as the Aztecs put up another five runs to close out the first inning, extending their lead to 9-0. Mares would be charged with giving up two earned runs in the inning, ending his streak of not allowing an earned run at 21 2/3 consecutive innings.
The lobos picked up one run in the second as third baseman Quay Grant singled through the right side for an RBI, putting the score at 9-1 in the Aztecs favor. Going into the bottom of the second, New Mexico's Mares returned to form, showing his poise as he sat the Aztecs down in order to close out the inning.
The Lobos put together a little rally in the fourth inning as freshman first baseman DJ Peterson smoked a two-run double to right center off Aztecs starter Corey Black. With two outs and runners on first and third, UNM's sophomore shortstop Alex Albritton came through in a big way, as he kept the rally alive with an RBI single up the middle. After putting up three in the fourth, the Lobos narrowed the Aztecs lead to 9-4.
After having his earned run streak snapped in the first, Mares completely shut the Aztecs out, giving up just two hits the rest of the way before being replaced in the middle of the seventh inning. With Mares holding the Aztecs at bay, the Lobos continued to chip away at the lead, as they cut the gap to 9-6 by adding a pair of runs in the fifth and sixth innings.
In the seventh, the Lobos found themselves within one run of the Aztecs, as they were able to capitalize off a costly SDSU mistake. With one out and runners on second and third, the Aztecs made a pitching change, subbing out reliever Bryan Crabb for Craig Rasmussen. In turn, the Lobos sent out junior transfer Luke Campbell to pinch-hit for left fielder Trey Porras. Campbell pelted the ball at SDSU's shortstop Cody Slader. Slader couldn't handle it, making it possible for the runners on second and third to come around and score. Showing some true grit and determination, the Lobos cut the Aztecs lead down to 9-8 at the end of seven.
After falling in the hole 9-0 in the first inning, the Lobos had put together a masterful comeback, as they took their first lead in the game in the top of the eighth, 10-9. Kyle Stiner and Ben Woodchick each collected RBIs in the inning to give the Lobos the lead.
Losing the lead must have woken up SDSU, however, as the Aztecs put up four runs on UNM"s reliever Richard Olson in the bottom of the eighth. Olson seemed to have the Aztecs right where he wanted them as he sat down the first two batters he faced. Things fell apart for Olson soon after though, as he gave up an RBI single to Torres, followed by a run scoring triple by Wilson. SDSU's catcher Brad Haynal capped off the inning with a two-run homer that put the Aztecs back up 13-10.
With their final chance to put together an epic comeback, the Lobos came up just short as they couldn't muster another rally in the ninth, losing by a final score of 13-10.
The Lobos fall to 3-15 (0-2, MWC) on the season after the loss, while SDSU improves to 5-14 (2-0, MWC)
The third and final game of the series will take place tomorrow at 2 p.m. MT at Tony Gwynn Stadium.