March 27, 2012
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - For the fifth time this season the University of New Mexico baseball team lost a one-run game, dropping an 8-7 decision to the visiting Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks Tuesday night at Isotopes Park. The Lobos rallied from an early 8-2 deficit but couldn't complete the comeback in the final innings.
The Lumberjacks did all their damage in the first four innings, and they did it with extra-base hits. Eight of the teams' 12 hits went for extra bases. Will Mathis, making his first career start for the Lobos, was touched up for four runs, three earned, on five hits in only one and two-thirds innings.
Reliever Hobie McClain came in and stopped the bleeding, though. He did not allow a run, and struck out four and allowed only two hits in three and one-third innings, his longest outing of his career.
"We kind of gave away the win there," he said. "We should've won, but tomorrow we'll come out with the old fire under our belly and be ready to go."
The Lobos rallied for two runs in each of the fifth and sixth innings, and then one in the eighth, but couldn't close the gap all the way. They managed only three hits in 13 at bats with runners in scoring position and struck out for the final out with a runner on base in each of the final three innings.
Five Lobos recorded at least two hits, however, with DJ Peterson leading the way with three, which raised his Mountain West-leading average to .471. John Pustay came off the bench and added two hits of his own, and was on base with a walk in the ninth when Alex Allbritton struck out to end the game.
"I hate to lose," Pustay said. "So what, I got two hits? I don't really keep track of that. I just want wins."
The two teams complete the short mid-week series tomorrow afternoon at 3 p.m. at Isotopes Park. Selby Brummett is expected to make his first career start for the Lobos.
"We were on such a roll playing TCU," Pustay said. "Then we come out and play like that. But, I have confidence we'll come out tomorrow."