Lobos Travel To Play New Mexico State And UTEP
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  02/24/2004
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

Feb. 24, 2004

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DOUBLE THE FUN: The Lobos take a break from tournament play to square off against New Mexico State and UTEP. New Mexico will play a doubleheader in Las Cruces, N.M. on Sat., Feb. 28 starting at 1 p.m. and at El Paso, Texas on Sun., Feb. 29 at 11 a.m.

The Lobos dominated New Mexico State in 2003, winning all five contests. New Mexico scored at least four runs in each game and never allowed more than two runs to the Aggies. Overall, UNM holds the series lead, 70-41. The Lobos will also play a doubleheader against NMSU on March 20 in Albuquerque.

This is the first year UTEP has had a softball team. The Miners are in the WAC.

SCOUTING THE AGGIES: New Mexico State enters this weekend 2-15 overall and just 1-11 at home. Its two wins came against Texas Tech and the University of Illinois-Chicago. The Aggies' losses have come to Texas State (twice), Texas-San Antonio, Tulsa, Texas A&M, Boston Univ. (twice), San Jose, Tennessee (twice), Southwest Missouri State, Portland State (twice), Colorado State and Univ. of Illinois-Chicago.

Leading New Mexico State's offense are Veronica Owens (.330 avg.) and Stacy Knight (.298 avg.). Owens not only has the team's best average, she leads the tam in at-bats (56), runs scored (6), and hits (19). Knight has two doubles, the team's only triple, one home run and five RBIs along with 10 walks.

Aggie pitchers have struggled on the mound this season. Lindsay Ashley is 0-3 but has a team-low 5.15 ERA over her 36.2 innings pitched. Ashley has started three games, pitched on complete game, allowed 47 hits, 10 walks, and struck out 13. Jennifer Bride has a 6.61 ERA and a 2-9 overall record. Bride has started 11 games for 47.2 innings and 61 hits, 22 walks, and 41 strike outs.

MINERS REVIEW: UTEP is 3-5 in its first season of play. Its three wins come against Sul Ross State (twice) and Louisiana-Monroe. The Miners have lost to Texas Tech (twice), Northwestern State, Arkansas and UNLV.

Renee DiPuccio leads the team with her .667 batting average, although she has only played in one game. The next highest avg. is Gracie Borjas. In eight games played. Borjas hits .519 with seven runs scored and one RBI.

The Miners pitching staff consists of DiPuccio and Malia Simmons. DiPuccio has a 3.46 ERA, is 3-2, tossed two complete games, has given up 34 hits over 26.1innings and struck out 20 and walked 12. Simmons has a 3.77 ERA, is 0-3 with two complete games for 26 innings. Simmons has given up 27 hits and 13 walks and struck out 10.

SECOND TO ONE: The Lobos placed second at the North Texas/Betlin Round-Up this past weekend, putting up a record of 4-2. They were 4-1 along with Oklahoma State (the eventual tournament champion) going into their last game of the tournament where they played none other than OSU. The Lobos lost the game and the tournament crown in eight innings, 1-0.

Juniors Ashley Perkins and Cassie Chavez and Stephanie Kennedy were named to the 15-woman all-tournament team announced following the game. Perkins was 3-0 with a 0.33 ERA. She pitched two complete game shutouts, allowed just one earned run and two walks while striking out 23 over 21 innings. Kennedy hit .276 going 5-18 with two runs scored. Chavez hit .222 going 4-18 with one home run, one double and three RBIs.

Senior Ora Hensley had the best avg. at the North Texas/Betlin Round-Up batting .400. She had the team's second most hits (4), RBIs (2) and runs scored (1) and tied for the team lead in walks (2) this weekend.

TERRIFIC TRANSFER: Junior Ashley Perkins is a perfect 5-0 as a Lobo so far. A transfer from Washburn University, she has a 1.86 ERA in 37.2 innings pitched. She leads the team in wins (5), ERA (1.86), shutouts (3), fewest hits allowed (26), fewest runs scored (11, 10 earned), fewest walks (19), and most strike outs (30).

PERKINS IS MWC PITCHER OF THE WEEK: Junior pitcher Ashley Perkins has been named the Mountain West Conference Softball Pitcher of the Week. This is her first award as a Lobo. Colorado State sophomore Melanie Laffoon was named Player of the Week.

Perkins, a Shawnee, Kan., product, went 3-0 (two complete game shutouts) for New Mexico over the weekend at the North Texas/Betlin Roundup, striking out 23 and giving up 12 hits and an earned run in 21.0 innings on the mound. Against Southwest Missouri State, she struck out 11 batters and scattered three hits, earning her first complete game shutout of the weekend in New Mexico's 2-0 victory. In UNM's 2-0 win over Wichita State, Perkins struck out five, while giving up only three hits for her second complete game shutout in a row. She ended her tournament with a seven inning outing in the Lobos 2-1, eight inning win over Creighton. Against the Blue Jays, Perkins fanned seven, while giving up six hits and an earned run on the way to her third win of the tournament. On the season, she is 5-0 with a 1.86 ERA and 30 strikeouts in 37.2 innings of work.

Laffoon, a Scottsdale, Ariz., native, hit .400 (6-for-15) at the Troy Cox Classic last weekend, with three home runs, six RBI and five runs scored. She had a hit in four of five games for the Rams, including a 2-for-6 effort on the opening day of the tournament against Illinois-Chicago and No. 25 Texas-San Marcos. Laffoon went 1-for-3 from the plate and scored a run against the Flames, helping CSU to a 6-2 victory. Against the 25th-ranked Bobcats, Laffoon broke a 2-2 tie with her sixth inning three-run homer over the right field fence, giving the Rams a 5-2 advantage on the way to a 5-3 win. The victory over Texas-San Marcos was the first over a ranked opponent for Colorado State since joining the MWC. Laffoon followed that by going 3-for-3 against New Mexico State, smashing her second homer of the tournament (solo). She also had two RBI and scored two runs of her own in the 5-0 CSU win over the Aggies. She concluded her weekend with a solo shot against the 25th-ranked Bobcats, but the Rams fell short of their second upset of the tournament, losing 2-1.