TEMPE, Ariz. – The University of New Mexico softball team was looking for that timely hit in both games on the day, suffering an 8-2 loss to No. 24 ranked California and a 10-0 loss to Northwestern on Friday at the Kajikawa Classic at the Tempe Sports Complex.
The Lobos had chances in both games to scores runs, but the team did not capitalize on bases-loaded situations. UNM scored two runs on the day and pounded out 10 hits between the two games. The Lobo pitching staff allowed 23 hits and 18 runs on the day.
UNM dropped to 0-3 on the season and Northwestern improved to 1-1.
GAME 1 – California 8, New Mexico 2
It was a tough start for starting sophomore pitcher Lisa Rodrigues, as she allowed the Bears to score three runs in the first inning off two hits. Rodrigues settled down in the second by not allowing a run, but the third inning was another tough one, as California added four more runs to take a 7-0 lead.
The Lobos put together their bats in the fourth inning and scored their first run of the season. Senior Chelsea Anaya started the inning off with a single straight up the middle, but was out on the next play as Jasmine Casados grounded into a double play. The Lobos weren’t finished in the inning, as freshman Michala Erickson took control of California’s Nisa Ontiveros and sent one over the centerfield wall.
The very next play, Naomi Tellez put the ball in the exact same place as Erickson but was called out due to team celebration in fair territory. On Erickson’s home run, the team had been warned for being in fair territory. The ruling states that if a team is warned once then the second time a team or teammate is in fair territory, that the home run is to be ruled a triple and the putout goes to the catcher as unassisted.
The Lobos scored their second run in the fifth inning with two outs. Brandi Heimburg started the rally with a single to left field. She advanced on Karissa Haleman’s single to right field and a wild pitch put Heimburg across the plate for a Lobo run.
California scored one last run in the top of the fifth Jordan Wallace doubled to left center to score Victoria Jones.
UNM had a chance in the third inning when Heimburg reached first on a fielding error by California’s third baseman. Heimburg then stole second and advanced to third on a fielding error. With a chance to score, the Lobos couldn’t come through to push that run across.
Bases were loaded in the sixth inning after Casados walked, Erickson singled to right center and Tellez singled to right field. Senior Jordan Sjostrand had a chance to pick up some RBIs but struck out swinging to end the rally.
Rodrigues suffered the loss in the circle, dropping to 0-1 on the season in her first start. In six innings of work, she struck out five, allowed eight runs and walked four. Ontiveros recorded her first win on the season, striking out two and allowing five hits in five innings.
GAME 2 – Northwestern 10, New Mexico 0
Once again the Lobos had a chance to score runs, but couldn’t capitalize with hits at the right time. Bases were loaded in the first inning after Anaya singled through the left side and Erickson singled up the middle. Tellez made it to first on the next at-bat off a dropped third strike. With two outs and bases loaded, the Lobos couldn’t push a run across the plate for the second time on the day.
Northwestern got to the starting Lobo pitcher Tess McPherson by two dingers from pitcher Amy Letourneau. But her second dinger was ruled a triple because a Northwestern teammate was in fair territory moving a bat out of the Letouneau’s way.
Anaya and Erickson put together the only two hits on the Lobos side. McPherson recorded the loss to drop to 0-1 on the season. She allowed six runs and struck out one in two innings of work. Lentourneau claimed her first win of the season with seven strike outs and only walking two.
UNM will wrap up the Kajikawak tournament tomorrow. First pitch will be against UC Riverside at 10 a.m. and the second game will start at 12:30 p.m. against Portland State.
POST GAME NOTES: Michala Erickson’s home run was her first career home run in a Lobo uniform.