Feb. 27, 2007
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. --- New Mexico softball continues the 2007 season this weekend at the Buzz Classic hosted by Georgia Tech in Atlanta, Ga. The Lobos are coming off a two week break following the Kajikawa Classic on Feb. 9-11 in Tempe, Ariz. UNM enters this weekend's schedule with a 1-4 overall record and enter the heart of the non-conference slate. The Lobos are scheduled to face Lipscomb and GT on Friday at 10 a.m. and 12 p.m., before playing a doubleheader Saturday against Centenary and Indiana State starting at 5 p.m. The final day of the classic is Sunday with bracket play to determine the schedule.
Kajikawa Classic: The Lobos went 1-4 in the Kajikawa Classic on Feb. 9-11 with a historic victory over No. 3 UCLA, 13-1, in five innings. UNM faced three nationally-ranked opponents to open the year in Arizona State, Fresno State and the Bruins. The Lobos also battled Ohio State and Florida while in Tempe, Ariz.
Ranked Opponents - UNM faces No. 21 Georgia Tech Friday afternoon in the Buzz Classic. Friday's game with the Yellow Jackets is the fourth this season against a nationally-ranked opponent. The Lobos played No. 4 Arizona State, No. 15 UCLA and Fresno State, who was ranked No. 21 at the time. Every opponent UNM has played this year is either ranked or receiving votes this week.
Lobos Run-Rule No. 3 UCLA - UNM pounded out 13 runs on 12 hits to upset the third-ranked UCLA Bruins, 13-1, on Feb. 10 in five innings. Junior pitcher Kelly Ninemire dominated in the circle throwing five innings allowing a run and holding UCLA to two hits. Sophomore Samantha Hughes and freshman Katie Gilmore both hit their first home runs of the year and led UNM at the plate. The Lobos pick up their first victory of the season and move to 1-3 on the season. The upset of UCLA (1-3) was the first victory in the Ty Singleton era at UNM.
Gilmore Swinging Hot Bat: Freshman Katie Gilmore is hitting .375 in her first five collegiate games and helped the Lobos run-rule No. 3 UCLA, 13-1, at the Kajikawa Classic. Gilmore went 2-for-4 in the game with two runs scored and three RBI. She also hit her first career home run against the Bruins.
Singleton Makes Impact: New Mexico head coach Ty Singleton led the Lobos into their first tournament last weekend and picked up his first win in the Cherry and Silver. Singleton guided UNM to a 13-1 victory over then ranked No. 3 UCLA. Singleton has a career record of 131-92 heading into the Buzz Classic. In six years as a head coach at the Division I level, Singleton has led his teams to four NCAA Tournament appearances while at Missouri and Northwestern (La.).
Aggressive Style of Play: The Lobos have brought an aggressive style of play into the new year. UNM has stolen five bases this year and scored 17 runs. Last year alone, the Lobos only stole 11 bases and scored 260 runs. Singleton's style of play was noticeable in the opening weekend against Ohio State, Arizona State and UCLA.
Lobos Picked Sixth In Pre-season MWC Poll: The New Mexico softball team has been picked sixth in the Mountain West Conference Preseason Coaches Poll as announced on Jan. 30 by the league office. The Lobos enter the season under the leadership of new head coach Ty Singleton and hope to build upon last year's 23-31 overall record. San Diego State claimed the top honor with UNLV and BYU rounding out the top three spots. The final three spots in the poll belong to Utah, Colorado State and UNM.
Senior Leadership: New Mexico has six seniors on the 2007 roster, including Jennifer Deitrich, Becky Dover, Ryanne Hodgins, Caley Peterson, Amy Ray and Liz Young. Their experience and leadership will be looked up as UNM enters the Singleton era. The Lobos return 13 players from last year's squad and face a difficult slate in 2007.
Newcomers: UNM has eight newcomers this year and expect a lot of great things. The Lobos could start four freshman to open the season this weekend at the Kajikawa Classic against five tough opponents. Junior Kelly Ninemire, who transferred from Odessa College, could be an opening day starter for UNM after throwing well in the pre-season. Freshman Tori Rogers will see time in the circle this weekend and could have an impact. Offensively, Sara Loeffelholz and Katie Gilmore will provide pop in the lineup. Albuquerque products Kim Holyfield could start at short and catcher Erin Brandow will start behind the dish.
Home Opener: New Mexico opens the 2007 home schedule on March 17 against Utah Valley State in a doubleheader starting at 4 p.m. Home Lobo softball game will be shown live through All-Access on www.GoLobos.com and gametracker will be provided.
Lobos In The Circle: The Lobos used a variety of arms in the Kajikawa Classic including junior Kelly Ninemire, senior Caley Peterson and freshman Tori Rogers. Ninemire had the best game of the weekend against UCLA. Ninemire dominated the Bruins throwing five innings and holding them to one run on two hits. Rogers and Peterson provided quality innings in the circle. UNM will have all three available this weekend if needed.