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No. 21 Lobos Host MWC Foe BYU For 3-Game Series
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  03/25/2009
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

March 25, 2009

  • Lobo Baseball vs. BYU Game Notes

    Thursday Promotions: Sponsored by Univision; Fans wearing red, get in for $2; CNM faculty, staff and students get in free with current ID

    #21/20 Lobo Baseball (22-3, 3-0)
    Games #26-28 • BYU
    Thursday, March 26 • 6 p.m. (MDT)
    Friday, March 27 • 6 p.m. (MDT)
    Saturday, March 28 • 12 p.m. (MDT)
    Isotopes Park • Albuquerque, N.M.

    Live Stats, Webcast: Link available on GoLobos.com.

    Radio: KDEF 1150 AM (Henry Tafoya, play-by-play)

    Against BYU (14-8, 4-2 MWC): BYU leads the series 72-47-1, with a slight 30-29 edge in Albuquerque. The Cougars are led by seniors Kent Walton (.394, 3 2B, 3 HR, 6 SB) and Michael Bowen (.373, 7 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR, 15 RBI). The Cougars are 4-2 in MWC action with series wins over Utah and San Diego State.

    Up Next: UNM wraps up its 9-game homestand next week with Texas Tech on March 31 and April 1.

    LOBO BASEBALL QUICK HITS
    • Step 1 - National Recognition (Check) ... Bouyed by a series sweep of No. 3 Texas A&M and a nine-game winning streak, the Lobos cracked the national rankings for the first time since 1985. The last time the Lobos cracked the Top 25 in the Baseball America they climbed as high as No. 14. This week's Lobos national rankings are:
    Baseball America - 21
    Collegiate Baseball - 20
    USA Today/ESPN Coaches - Receiving Votes
    National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) - Receiving Votes
    Ping! Baseball - 30
    Rivals.com - NA

    • Neda Named to Johnny Bench Watch List ... The Greater Wichita Area Sports Commission announced the official watch list for the 2009 Coleman Company-Johnny Bench Award delivered by Papa John's Pizza. Forty-four catchers were nominated for the award by their coaches, including New Mexico sophomore Rafael Neda. The award is given annually to the top NCAA Division I collegiate catcher.

    Step 2 ... Win A Conference Championship (Work In Progress) ... Quick Notes About The Lobos (22-3, 3-0 MWC) ... The Lobos have tied their best start to the season at 22-3 with the 1973 team ... For the first time since 1985, the University of New Mexico baseball team has cracked the national polls. The Lobos are ranked or receiving votes in five of the six national collegiate baseball polls. Collegiate Baseball has the Lobos ranked the highest at No. 20, and Baseball America has the Lobos ranked No. 21, the first appearance in that poll since 1985. Ping! Baseball has the Lobos ranked No. 30, while the NCBWA and the USA Today/ESPN Coaches polls have the Lobos receiving votes ... New Mexico was featured in March 19th's Baseball America Weekend Preview for the Stat of the Week - 1.29 triples per game. A big jump from 0.42 in 2008 ... While the outfield has seen a variety of lineups in the Lobos first 19 games, the infield has remained a constant. Kevin Atkinson (1B), Mike Brownstein (2B), Daniel Gonzalez (SS), and Dane Hamilton (3B) have started every game in the infield. Gonzalez was the last Lobo to play every inning of defense at the same position for UNM. Gonzalez got his first break on March 6 in the 8th inning against Binghamton ... UNM will play in the friendly confines of Isotopes Park for 25 of its first 30 games of the 2009 season, that includes six consecutive weekends ... After April 1, the Lobos will only be in Albuquerque for 6 of their last 25 regular season games.

    Step 3 ... Earn Bid To NCAA Tournament (Work In Progress) ... There are several components involved with earning a bid to the NCAA Tournament, something the Lobos are trying to do for the first time since 1962 ... First, wins are important. There isn't a conversation about the NCAAs if the W's are not starting to pile up. UNM is doing well there at 22-3, the most wins of any Division I team coming into the week and only one of 3 teams with 20 wins so far this season ... Next, strength of schedule. According to nationally-recognized baseball website, Boydsworld.com, the Lobos are sitting at 75 on the old SOS ranking. That is about to pick up as the Lobos head deeper into MWC play and have non-conference series remaining with Texas Tech (SOS - 38), Arizona (12), Nebraska (33), and Stanford (2) ... And don't forget about that pesky RPI ranking. The NCAA's official RPI will not be released until later in the season, but Boyd's World continues to be one of the closest to what the NCAA will release. Going into Wednesday, March 25, the Lobos are sitting at 47 after being as high as 28 going into the Northwestern series last week.

    Current 2009 RPI (Final 2008 UNM NCAA RPI - 66, up from 167)
    2009 NCAA - first release later in the season
    Boyd's World - 47 (MWC - 5)
    WarrenNolan.com - 50 (MWC - 7)
    Ping Baseball - first release in April

    Finally, the official NCAA stats rankings ... So now it's official! The NCAA released its first national stats rankings this week for games played through Sunday, March 22, and the Cherry and Silver is all over the top 25 team rankings and top 50 player rankings. New Mexico leads the nation in batting average, hits, doubles, triples per game and triples. The Lobos are second in scoring, runs and slugging percentage.

    Individually, sophomore outfielder Ryan Honeycutt leads the nation in batting average at a .534 clip. Seniors Mike Brownstein, Kevin Atkinson and Dane Hamilton lead the nation, 1-2-3, in hits with 50, 48 and 45. Hamilton leads the nation in doubles, while Brownstein and Brian Cavazos-Galvez lead in triples.

    Lobos in NCAA Statistical Rankings (games through Sunday, March 22)
    Top 25 Team Rankings

    1. Batting Average - .410
    1. Hits - 394
    1. Doubles - 74
    1. Triples Per Game - 1.28
    1. Triples - 32
    2. Scoring - 11.8 runs per game
    2. Runs Scored - 296
    2. Slugging Percentage - .625
    4. Win-Loss Percentage - .880
    7. Doubles Per Game - 2.96
    9. Stolen Bases - 46
    10. Double Plays - 26
    14. Fielding Percentage - .975
    16. Sacrifice Bunts - 21
    19. Hit By Pitch - 35

    Top 50 Individual Rankings
    Kevin Atkinson, Sr., 1B
    2. Runs - 39
    2. Hits - 48
    5. RBI - 35
    12. Total Bases - 71
    13. Runs Per Game - 1.56
    17. Triples - 3
    20. Sacrifice Bunts - 5
    24. Batting Average - .462

    Mike Brownstein, Sr., 2B
    1. Hits - 50
    1. Triples - 7
    2. Triples Per Game - 0.28
    5. Total Bases - 76
    6. Runs - 34
    12. Toughest To K - 27.3
    29. Stolen Bases - 12
    31. Batting Average - .459
    36. RBI - 28

    Brian Cavazos-Galvez, Sr., OF
    1. Triples Per Game - 0.32
    1. Triples - 7
    8. Hits - 41
    8. Total Bases - 74
    9. Runs - 33
    17. Runs Per Game - 1.50
    17. Slugging Percentage - .851
    19. RBI - 30
    22. Batting Average - .471

    Clinton Cox, Sr., RHP
    26. Saves - 4

    Travis Dirk, Jr., RHP
    22. Wins - 4

    Daniel Gonzalez, Jr., SS
    20. Sacrifice Bunts - 5
    42. Sacrifice Flies - 3

    Dane Hamilton, Sr., 3B
    1. Doubles - 14
    3. Hits - 45
    3. Triples - 6
    4. Total Bases - 77
    7. Triples Per Game - 0.24
    16. Runs - 31
    23. Doubles Per Game - 0.56
    26. Hit By Pitch - 8
    29. RBI - 29

    John Hesketh, Sr., LHP
    39. Walks Allowed Per 9 IP - 1.13

    Ryan Honeycutt, So., OF
    1. Batting Average - .534
    6. On-Base Percentage - .586
    13. Hits - 39

    Bobby Moore, Sr., LHP
    22. Wins - 4

    Rafael Neda, So., C/DH
    29. Runs - 29

    Max Willett, Jr., OF
    27. Hits - 36
    35. Toughest to K - 19.6

    Kesler Makes Return ... Redshirt junior Willy Kesler returned to the mound for the first time on Sunday, March 22, just 10 months after successful Tommy John surgery. Kesler faced three batters in the sixth inning against Northwestern before giving way to freshman Gabe Aguilar. Kesler was one of the Lobos top pitchers in 2008 with a 4-0 record and 1.90 ERA.

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