Lobos Head To Texas For Mean Green/Wells Fargo Classic
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  03/23/2004
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

March 23, 2004

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ON THE ROAD AGAIN: The New Mexico softball team (23-14) heads back to the road to compete in its second tournament of the year hosted by North Texas. The Lobos will participate in the Mean Green/Wells Fargo Classic this Friday-Sunday with Harvard, Norhtern Colorado and North Texas. The Lobos will play Harvard on Friday at 10 a.m. followed by Northern Colorado at 12:30 p.m. On Saturday, New Mexico will take on North Texas at 12:30 p.m. immediately followed by Harvard at 3 p.m. The Lobos wrap up play on Sunday against Northern Colorado at 10 a.m. and North Texas at 3 p.m. All times are Central time.

The Lobos have faced Harvard once before. In 2001, New Mexico shut out the Crimson, 9-0. It is the second time this year, the Lobos will face a member of the Ivy League, having played Columbia at the Lady Raider Mutual of Omaha Classic in Lubbock, Texas. UNM is 6-0 against members of the Ivy League, including its 2-0 record against Columbia this year.

New Mexico holds the slight advantage over Northern Colorado in the series, 16-11. The two have not played each other since the 1984 season, when New Mexico won all five games, shutting out the Bears once and holding them to a total of six runs on the season. Overall, the Lobos have won seven straight against Northern Colorado with UNC's last win coming May 6, 1983 when they won 3-2.

North Texas is in its first year of play, but did take on the Lobos once already this season. New Mexico won the game 3-1. Sophomore Iraina Ogas got the win, throwing 6.1 innings for just two hits, no runs and one walk while striking out four. The Lobos managed only five hits in the game. Senior Ora Hensley went 2-2 with one RBI, junior Cassie Chavez went 2-3 with one home run for two RBI, and junior Ashley Shartzer went 1-3.

WEEKEND RECAP: The Lobos finished their first homestand of the season 5-1. New Mexico swept UTEP and New Mexico State while splitting the doubleheader with Texas Tech. They hit .268 compared to their opponents .200 average and outscored them 19-6.

Senior Sabrina Sandberg had the best weekend, hitting .438 with four runs scored and seven hits that included a double and a home run. The Lobos had four other home runs off the bats of senior Ora Hensley and sophomores Stephanie Kennedy, Iraina Ogas and Jamar Bynum.

Freshman Robyn Hutson has been playing in right field lately despite being the backup catcher.

Senior Amy Dumas and Ogas had stellar performances from the circle, both going 2-0. Dumas had a 0.64 ERA over 11 innings with nine strikeouts while Ogas had a 0.72 ERA over 19.1 innings and 19 batters struck out.

ON TOP OF THE MOUNTAIN: The Lobos place first or second in the Mountain West Conference in 24 team statistic categories and place in the top 10 in 50 individual categories.

The team is on leads in three of 21 batting category (total plate appearances-1,105, at bats-973 and hit by pitch-16). In pitching categories, New Mexico leads in five of the 22 statistics kept being batters struck out (214), batters struck out looking (65), saves (6), innings pitched (252.2) and wins (23). In fielding categories, the Lobos take the cake in three of the 11 categories (stolen bases against-37, steal attempts against-44, and putouts-758).

Individually, freshman Irene Weik has control of the most categories for the Lobos. Weik leads in fewest hits allowed (9), runs allowed (6), walks (3), earned runs allowed (6) and ties with SDSU's Cori Janelli for doubles allowed (1). Sophomore Iraina Ogas and junior Ashley Shartzer each claim first in three categories. Ogas has the most games finished (11), games in relief (12), and saves (4). Shartzer leads in hit by pitch (5), putout chances (276) and putouts (257). Sophomore Stephanie Kennedy leads in total plate appearances (128) and at bats (117). Finally, junior Cassie Chavez leads in assists (88) and senior Kim Korsak has the conference's only catcher's interference.

SCOUTING THE CRIMSON: Harvard is just getting into the full swing of its season, entering the tournament at 4-5 overall and 3-3 when playing at a neutral site. As a team, the Crimson are hitting .237. Their leading everyday player is Cecily Gordon at .462. Gordon also leads the team in hits (12) and is tied with Annie Dell'Aria for RBI (6). Dell'Aria is tied with Virginia Fritsch and Sara Williamson for runs scored (4).

The pitching staff will be the Lobo's biggest threat. The team ERA is just 1.22 and they have struck out 54 batters in nine games. Their ace, Kara Brotemarkle, has a 0.27 ERA and a 3-2 overall record. Brotemarkle has thrown three complete games and one shutout, allowing just one earned run in 26.1 innings and striking out a team-best 29 batters. Lauren Bettinelli follows with a 0.86 ERA and 0-1 record. Michele McAteer and Becky Voaklander complete the staff with their 2.42 and 4.67 ERAs, respectively.

Sophomore Iraina Ogas has been instrumental at the plate and in the circle.

BEARS BRIEFING: Northern Colorado comes to the tournament just 2-12 and on a three-game losing streak. The Bears' two wins come against Massachusetts-Lowell and South Dakota. As a team, they hit .247 and have an ERA of 4.60.

The Bear's star hitter is Erin Peterson. Peterson is hitting a team-high .441 with 15 hits and six RBI. Brooke Boyer has the most RBI (8) on the team while Erika Trujillo has the most runs scored (8).

The pitching staff is Northern Colorado's weak spot, with the lowest team ERA 4.16, belonging to Stephanie Miller. Miller is 2-4 overall, throwing 38.2 innings and striking out a team-high 21 batters. Stacey Moon owns a 4.82 ERA and a 0-5 record. Moon has started a team-high six games for 36.1 innings and a team-high 25 earned runs and 22 walks. Danelle Sayler competes the rotation with her 5.01 ERA and 0-3 record. Sayler has thrown the fewest innings, 22.1.

MEAN GREEN REPORT: North Texas, the tournament host, enters the weekend 8-34 overall and just 1-11 in its last 12 games. The Mean Green have only won three games in the entire month of March.

As a team, the Mean Green are hitting just .199 while their opponents are averaging .320. The team ERA is 4.49 compared to their opponents 1.48 ERA. North Texas is prone to striking out, with a team total of 218 times, more than two times that of their opponents, which have struck out 103 times.

At the plate, Stephanie Cranmer leads the team with her .286 average and 34 hits. The RBI leader is Brittiny Chapman, hitting .193, with 11. Chapman is tied with Katy Maxey in runs scored at 13 and with Susan Waters for home runs with a total of four.

Maxey is the team's best pitcher with a 4.09 ERA and an overall record of 6-26. She has made 37 appearances, started 27 and thrown 15 complete games for one shut out. Maxey has thrown almost three times the number of innings compared to her other two teammates with 191.2 innings pitched. She has given up 251 hits, 139 runs and 54 walks while striking out 64. Also pitching for North Texas is Mandy Hacker and Raci Burnett. Hacker owns a 5.44 ERA and a 2-7 record, starting 15 games. Hacker has thrown 64.1 innings, allowing 92 hits, 54 runs, 23 walks and 29 strikeouts. Burnett has a 5.68 ERA over 12.1 innings of relief.