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Lobos Host TTU Monday in Matchup of 30-Win Teams
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  04/20/2014

Lobo Baseball -  at Lobo Field
When: Monday - 2 p.m. (MT)
Who: Texas Tech Red Raiders
GoLobos.com: Live stats,box score, live stream, postgame recap and stats
Video: The game will be streamed live at GoLobos.com
Radio: ESPN Radio 101.7 The TEAM will broadcast the game live.

Mountain West Standings

PlaceSchoolMW recordOverall record
1 New Mexico 14-4 30-11-1
2T UNLV 13-8 25-15
2T Nevada 13-8 21-16
4 San Diego St. 10-8 28-12
5 Fresno St. 8-13 19-21
6 San José St. 6-15

12-28

7 Air Force 5-13

14-25


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A red-hot Lobos team will welcome the equally hot Texas Tech Red Raiders to Lobo Field Monday afternoon at 2 MT in a game that features teams with a combined record of 62-22-1. It's the third meeting between the teams this season with the Red Raiders taking games in Lubbock (9-3) and Midland (6-3). This will be, however, only the 15th game TTU has played away from Lubbock this season. The Red Raiders are a .500 team (7-7) away from home. UNM, meanwhile, is 13-6 (.684) away from Lobo Field and 17-5-1 (.761) at home this season.

UNM (30-11-1, 14-4) has won eight straight games to open a four-game lead in the loss column in the Mountain West on both UNLV (25-15, 13-8) and Nevada (21-16, 13-8). Since the Lobos' last meeting with the Red Raiders on April 1, they are a staggering 11-1. As hot as UNM is, the Red Raiders are almost as hot, winners of eight straight themselves. Those games, however, have all been home contests, while five of UNM's eight wins have come on the road.

The Lobos are once again one of the best hitting teams in the nation, ranking fifth in team batting at .318, first in hits (486), sixth in both RBIs (266) and total bases (624) and eighth in runs (291). Meanwhile, Chase Harris is third in the nation in both hits (68) and RBIs (51), Alex Real is third in doubles with 18 and Sam Haggerty is eighth with 44 runs.

UNM continues to receive excellent pitching as well. The team's 3.88 ERA currently stands as the fourth best in program history and best since 1975. The bullpen has been especially good, posting a 3.14 ERA while protecting leads. UNM is a staggering 26-0 when holding a lead after six innings.

Despite a .726 winning percentage and a large lead in the Mountain West, UNM continues to go mostly unnoticed across the country. Below is a list of teams who are ranked or have been ranked this season but have a lower winninger percentage than the Lobos, who have yet to be ranked in any poll this season (teams in bold are ones UNM has defeated this season):

- Vanderbilt, Alabama, Louisville, Oklahoma State, UC Santa Barbara, Miami, Fla., Indiana, Rice, TCU, Kentucky, Florida, Tennessee, San Diego, Clemson, UNLV, Oklahoma, Georgia Tech, Arkansas, Texas A&M, UCLA, North Carolina State, Arizona State, Kansas, Kansas State, Auburn and Cal State-Fullerton.


FANS PLANNING ON ATTENDING MONDAY'S GAME SHOULD PLEASE PARK IN THE DIRT LOT TO THE SOUTH OF LOBO FIELD (THE BASEBALL SOUTH LOT) AND ENTER THROUGH THE GATE LOCATED NEAR THE CLUBHOUSE


• SCOUTING TEXAS TECH ... The Red Raiders are coming off a weekend sweep of Prairie View A&M, outscoring the Panthers 25-3 in the process. Like New Mexico, TTU is one of just 14 teams in the nation to own 30 or more wins, but a staggering 25 of those have been at home. The Red Raiders have only played 14 games away from Lubbock, and are just .500 (7-7) in those games. Contrast that to UNM, which is 13-6 away from Lobo Field this season.

Offensively TTU is led by sophomore Eric Gutierrez, who leads the team in batting (.338), runs (35), hits (52), triples (2), home runs (7), RBIs (37), total bases (88), slugging (.571) and OBP (.453). Freshman outfielder Stephen Smith is second on the team with a .305 average, while senior outfielder Adam Kirsch adds more pop to the lineup with six home runs, 35 RBIs and a .517 slugging percentage.

Sophomore righty Jonathan Tripp is expected to start against the Lobos. It will be his 10th appearance and third start of the year. He is 0-1 with a 2.89 ERA in 18.2 innings. He has struck out 14 and walked just three. Johnny Drozd (4-0, 1.80, three saves) and Ryan Moseley (1-1, 2.30, three saves) anchor a solid bullpen. Overall, the staff owns a 3.17 ERA and is holding opponents to a .254 batting average against.

• YOUTH IS SERVED... Of UNM’s top seven hitters, Chase Harris is the only senior and four of the seven are underclassmen: two freshmen (Danny Collier and Andre Vigil), two sophomores (Sam Haggerty and Jared Holley). Also, all of UNM’s top four relievers are either first- or second-year players.

• BULLPEN DOMINANCE ... Teams should be put on notice that if UNM takes a lead into the seventh inning, they are in trouble. UNM is an astounding 26-0 when leading after six and 27-0 when leading after eight thanks to an outstanding bullpen. Lobo relievers own a 3.14 ERA this season and is led by a quartet of performers, all of whom are in just their first or second year in the program. Closer Victor Sanchez is 1-0 with a team-leading seven saves in 13 relief appearances this season. He has struck out 17 and allowed just two runs in 18.1 relief innings. Freshman Carson Schneider is UNM’s go-to lefty out of the pen, having made 17 relief appearances and owning a 1.40 ERA over 19.1 innings. Sophomore Taylor Duree has been the workhorse, leading the team with 20 relief appearances and 25.0 innings out of the pen. He is 2-0 with one save and a 2.52 ERA. Junior Jake Cole is 2-0 with three saves and a 2.62 ERA in 14 relief appearances spanning 24.0 innings. He is the Lobos’ strikeout leader out of the pen, fanning 26 batters on the year.

• CHASING HARRIS ... With all the offensive talent UNM lost from last season’s team, the Lobos needed Chase Harris to become The Man for them in 2014, and that is exactly what he has done. He currently leads the nation in at bats with 183 (followed closely by Sam Haggerty in third with 179) and and is third in hits with 68. He also ranks third in the country with 51 RBIs. Meanwhile his 101 total bases is tops in the Mountain West, as are his 21 multi-hit games and 12 multi-RBI games, while his .372 average ranks second. He also leads the Lobos in home runs with six, triples with four, slugging (.552) and stolen bases (10).

Also, on April 18 at San Jose State he became the first Lobo since Mitch Garver on May 5, 2013, to record six RBIs in a game as UNM defeated the Spartans 14-4.

• WE WERE ONLY FRESHMEN ... The Lobos have received key contributions from many first-year players in 2014, but Danny Collier and Andre Vigil stand above the rest. Despite not starting when the season began, they now rank third and fifth on the team in batting at .342 and .325, respectively. Collier has reached base in all 28 of his starts while walking more than he has struck out. He has also leads the team with three outfield assists, including two at home plate: one against SJSU on March 22 and one at Stephen F. Austin on April 9.

Vigil, meanwhile, is third on the team with seven multi-RBI games, and had a 10-game hitting streak from March 14 to March 28. He hit .450 (18-for-40) during that stretch with nine runs, 12 RBIs and three doubles. He had five multi-hit games and struck out just three times in 44 plate appearances. He also second in the Mountain West in batting in conference games, hitting a crsip .417 (25-for-60).

• THE MAGIC NUMBER ... Six appears to be UNM’s magic number for both the offense and pitching staff this season. The Lobos are 22-0 when scoring at least six runs and 24-2-1 when holding the opponent under six runs.

• ‘BOS KNOW PITCHING ... If the UNM pitching staff can maintain its current 3.88 ERA over the rest of the season, it will post the fourth lowest ERA in the history of the program, and the lowest since 1975. The 2014 staff is doing this despite being on pace to set a school record for most innings pitched.

Despite pitching a mile above sea level, UNM has been excellent at home, posting a 2.98 ERA while holding opponents to a .265 batting average at Lobo Field.

• NO WEAK SPOTS IN THIS LINEUP ... The Lobo offense rolls nine deep, and nothing proves that more than the production they get out of the No. 9 spot in their order. Five Lobos have combined to hit .353 (54-for-153) while occupying the last place in the lineup. Aaron Siple (.361, 26-for-72) and Jared Holley (375, 18-for-48) lead the way.

Need further proof? Eight of the nine qualifiers in the batting order enters the game against Texas Tech with an average of .304 or better.

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