New Mexico Hosts Nationally-Ranked Oregon State For Three-game Series
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  03/08/2006
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

March 8, 2006

Complete Release in PDF Format
Download Free Acrobat Reader

UP NEXT FOR THE LOBOS: New Mexico puts its eight-game win streak on the line vs. Oregon State, which is ranked No. 11/12 in various national polls. The Beavers, who are 2-3 on the road, have a six-game win streak as they travel to Albuquerque for the first time ever. The teams will play Friday and Saturday at 6 p.m., followed by a 1 p.m. start on Sunday at Isotopes Park.

The Lobos do not know who will start Friday against OSU's ace, right-hander Dallas Buck. Buck is 3-0 with a 2.35 ERA in four starts. He has stuck out 25 in 23 innings and has allowed just 14 hits all year.

Lobo lefty, junior Danny Ray Herrera will square off with fellow lefty Anton Maxwell on Saturday. Herrera is 4-0 with a 1.45 ERA in five starts while Maxwell is 1-1 with a 6.35 ERA. Herrera, having thrown two complete games, has fanned 27 in 37.1 innings and allowed just seven walks. Maxwell, making three starts so far, has allowed 12 hits and eight runs in 11.1 innings.

Freshman Chace Lankford is slated to make his third consecutive Sunday start, taking on Jonah Nickerson. Both right-handed, Lankford is 3-1 with a save and a 4.40 ERA and Nickerson is 2-2 with a 2.77 ERA. In 14.1 innings over five appearances and two starts, Lankford has struck out 11. Nickerson has made four starts, including one complete game, striking out 22 in 26.0 innings.

Live stats will be available at the Lobos' official athletic website: www.GoLobos.com. Dan Rivera and Mike Foote will have the call on KDEF 1150 AM in Albuquerque and on the internet at UNM's website.

UNM VS. OREGON STATE, THE SERIES: In a series that began during head coach Rich Alday's second season at the helm of the Lobos, Oregon State holds a 4-1 lead. The Beavers won the first four games, outscoring New Mexico 39-24. But the Lobos won the last meeting, Feb. 22, 2003 in Las Cruces, N.M., 14-7.

All five meetings have taken place at neutral locations. OSU is making their first trip to the Duke City but their second trip to the state of New Mexico with the last two meetings between UNM and OSU were in Las Cruces.

Oregon State is the 19th different team to take on the Lobos at Isotopes Park since New Mexico started playing all their home games there in 2004. Overall, first-time visitors to the park have gone 9-9 in their first game. In 2004, opponents were 6-6 in their first game. In 2005, first-time visitors to Isotopes Park were 2-3 in their initial game and this season, they are 0-1.

A LOOK AT THE LOBOS: As a team, New Mexico is rolling on all cylinders. The Lobos are hitting .333 overall and have a 4.79 ERA. Defensively they are fielding .971 and have turned 33 double plays. They have outhit their opponents, 203-169, and outscored them, 149-95. The Lobos pitchers have allowed just 30 extra-base hits, including three home runs while the opponents have given up 58 extra-base hits which includes 15 homers.

Individually, six everyday players are hitting over .300. Junior Matt Foote leads them with a .406 average and 11 stolen bases. Junior Daniel Stovall has a team-high 27 hits, including 12 doubles and 32 RBI to compliment his .351 batting avg. Junior Chris Carlson, hitting .359, leads the team in home runs (6) and junior Ian Hollick (.328) leads the team in walks (14). Sophomore Jordan Pacheco has scored a team-high 25 runs to go with his .377 avg.

Junior Danny Ray Herrera

Junior Danny Ray Herrera picked up the season right where he left off last year. Again he leads the conference in wins with a 4-0 record in five starts. He has a 1.45 ERA, the third lowest in the Mountain West Conference, and has struck out 27 batters in 37.1 innings. Senior Nate Melek has also been a dominant force on the mound, going 3-1 in three starts for a 3.45 ERA, the seventh best in the MWC. Junior Damon Miller has been the guy to count on in the bullpen, making nine appearances for 12 innings and a 3.00 ERA. Miller has allowed just four earned runs to score while striking out eight.

SCOUTING THE BEAVERS: Oregon State, 10-4 overall, is aguably the toughest challenge New Mexico will face in 2006. The Beavers, a NCAA World Series participant last season, are ranked No. 11 or 12 in most of the national polls. They are 4-0 at home, 2-3 on the road and 4-1 at neutral locations.

OSU is a good hitting team with a .318 batting average. The Beavers have outhit their opponents (157-92) and have scored more than twice their opponents (95-47). Cole Gillespie, Bill Rowe and Shea McFeely have carried the brunt of the offensive load. Gillespie is hitting .452, leading the team in runs (17), walks (10), stolen bases (7) and is tied with Rowe and Scott Santschi in doubles (7). Rowe, hitting .367, leads the team in RBI (11) while McFeely, also hitting .367, has a team-high 22 hits and has three of the team's seven triples.

The Beaver pitching staff, with a 3.09 ERA, has dominated their opponents. Oregon State has shut out its opponents twice and have struck out 113 while allowing just 42 earned runs in 122.1 innings. Dallas Buck and Jonah Nickerson have been OSU's top two starters with 2.35 and 2.77 ERAs, respectively. Eddie Kunz, Kevin Gunderson and Jon Koller have been solid in relief, posting 2.00, 3.18 and 3.86 ERAs, respectively, and throwing over 9 innings each.

STOVALL NAMED MWC CO-PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Junior Daniel Stovall was named the MWC Co-Player of the week, earning his first accolade of the season and third of his career. went 15-for-21 (.714) from the plate with a home run, a triple, seven doubles, 16 RBI and 12 runs scored last week, as New Mexico tallied a 4-0 record, including a three-game sweep of Northern Colorado. He started the week off with a 3-for-6 , two RBI, four run scored performance in a 15-12 win over New Mexico State. In game one vs. Northern Colorado, Stovall went 4-for-4, with two doubles, four RBI and two runs scored, as the Lobos defeated the Bears, 9-4. In game two, he was 5-for-6, with a triple, two doubles, a career-high six RBI and three runs scored in the Lobos' 21-1 win. The five hits vs. UNC tied a career-best. Stovall concluded the series with a 3-for-5, four RBI and two runs scored effort. He collected a home run and two doubles as the Lobos defeated the Bears, 19-6. Stovall also collected 31 putouts with no errors from the first base position.

COLLEGE BASEBALL FOUNDATION PLACES STOVALL ON NATIONAL HONOR ROLL: One day after being named Co-MWC Player of the Week, junior Daniel Stovall was placed on the College Baseball Foundation's National Honor Roll of the Week. Stovall was one of six first basemen honored on the 35-player list. It is the second consecutive week and Lobo has made the roll.

Junior Daniel Stovall

WINNING WAYS: The Lobos are 13-4 overall, which is the best start through the first 17 games since head coach Rich Alday took over the program in 1990. The 1993 has the next best record at 11-6. That team went on to win 35 games, which is tied with the 2000 team for the fifth most wins in a single season in program history. The 2000 team, through its first 17 games, were 8-9 and went on to win the Mountain West Conference regular season title. Currently, the 13 wins is the most in the conference. The next closest is TCU, which was predicted to with the MWC, with eight. The Lobos were picked to finish fifth.

In New Mexico's 89 years of baseball, the most wins in a single season is 42, by the 1985 team. The second most is 41, achieved by the 1980 squad. Through the first 17 games, the `85 team was 15-2 thanks to a 12-game win streak while the `80 team, which would string together two 10-game wins streaks, was just 9-8. This season's team, with an eight-game win streak in tact, is projected to win 43 of 56 games, which includes the two guaranteed games in the Mountain West Conference Tournament.

DOUBLE TROUBLE: With senior Ryan Barba at shortstop, sophomore Jordan Pacheco at second base and junior Daniel Stovall at first, New Mexico opponents have run into trouble against arguably the best infield in the MWC.The Lobos' 33 double plays fielded are more than twice any other MWC school's production with San Diego State the next closest with 15. Not to mention Barba, Pacheco and Stovall rank 1, 2 and 3 in the conference for most double playes turned with 26, 25 and 23, respectively.

DAN THE DOUBLE MAN: Junior Daniel Stovall has been a double-hitting machine this season, cranking out 12 to lead the Mountain West Conference. Stovall hit two in four different games this season, including each of the games in the series vs. Northern Colorado.

FOUR HUNDRED AND FEELING FINE: Junior Matt Foote is doing whatever it takes to get on base. He is hitting .406 (26-64), has been walked five times and hit by a pitch at least 10 times but is credited with just eight as officials ruled he intentionally moved into them.

Once on base, Foote has made the opponents pay. He has scored 24 runs, the second most on the team, and has stolen 11 of 13 attempted bases to lead UNM.

Junior Matt Foote

20/20: Not since May 27, 2004 had the New Mexico baseball team produced 20 hits or scored 20 runs. That was until Northern Colorado came to town. On Saturday, March 4, the Lobos shelled out 24 hits and scored 21 runs en route to a huge win over the Bears. The next day in the series finale, the Lobos just missed scoring 20 runs, putting 19 on the board but didn't miss the 20 hit mark, dishing out 21.

MILLER MAKING HIS MOVE: Junior transfer Damon Miller has proven he is the guy who deserves the ball in ninth. Miller has made a team-high nine appearances in relief for New Mexico, earning a win and two saves. His 3.00 ERA is the third lowest on the team for pitchers making more than one appearance. In 12 innings, he has allowed just four earned runs to score and struck out eight.

REACHING FOR THE RECORDBOOKS: Junior Daniel Stovall is almost into the UNM career record books. Stovall, with 25 home runs, trails fifth place by nine. Jeff Grady is currently in fifth with 34 career homers. Stovall hit nine bombs in 2005 and 12 in 2004. He already has three this season.

Senior Darren Coltrinari and junior Danny Ray Herrera are vying for the same record. Coltrinari and Herrera have made 32 career starts. The fifth most is 40, held by Barry Kiess (1994-97) and James Vermilyea (2001-03). The record is 47.

Both Coltrinari and Herrera are also approaching the top-5 in wins and losses. Herrera, with 15 wins, and Coltrinari, with 11 wins, are chasing Ron Adair (1971-74) and Kurt Hildebrandt (1991-93, `95), who are tied for fifth with 20. Coltrinari and Herrera both have 12 career losses, needing five to place in a four-way tie for second with 17. The record is 21, set by Barry Kiess (1994-97).

SWING AND NO MISS: On Sunday, Feb. 26, New Mexico sent 35 batters to the plate against Utah Valley State. The Lobos drew six walks, giving them 29 official at bats. Not once, did a Lobo strike out. The last time New Mexico went an entire game without a strikeout was April 18, 2004 vs. Air Force. UNM won that game 18-6, with no strikeouts in 44 at bats.

BOMBS AWAY: Sophomore Ian Hollick snapped the nasty losing streak UNM had to start the season when it hit a home run. Juniors Chris Carlson and Daniel Stovall and sophomore Jordan Pacheco had combined to hit seven home runs in three games of the team's first eight, which the Lobos were 0-3 in. Hollick's solo shot in the Utah Valley State game on Saturday, Feb. 25 led to New Mexico's 3-0 win. Just to prove it was safe to hit home runs and win at the same time, Carlson and Stovall both hit bombs to left in UNM's 9-6 win over the Wolverine the next day. On Tuesday at New Mexico State, Hollick again hit a home run in a win. This time however, it was a grand slam, the first hit by UNM since 2004.

KDEF 1150 AM TO BROADCAST LOBO BASEBALL FOR THIRD CONSECUTIVE SEASON: For the third straight season, Albuquerque radio station KDEF will supply exclusive broadcasts of Lobo baseball on 1150 AM and throughout the world at www.GoLobos.com. All of the team's 29 home games will be broadcast live.

Henry Tafoya will call the play-by-play for the Lobos, while Dan Rivera and Mike Foote will provide analysis. It also marks the third straight season for the trio calling Lobo baseball. Prior to each broadcast, there will be a 15 minute pre-game show. A post-game show with interviews will follow at the conclusion of each game.

In addition to the broadcasts, all of New Mexico's home games can be followed live on the internet at www.GoLobos.com with Gametracker. Gametracker takes official statistics from the press box and provides up-to-the-minute information for users, including updated team and individual stats, an updated box score, and play-by-play. Gametracker can be accessed on the right side of UNM's home page in the upcoming events box.