RUSTON, La. – The New Mexico State baseball team defeated Louisiana Tech 6-4, Saturday, April 20 at J.C. Love Field in Ruston, La. With the win Aggies move to 21-18 on the year and 7-7 in Western Athletic Conference play.
The Aggies jumped on top early scoring two runs in the top of the first inning with a sacrifice fly from junior Tanner Rust and an RBI double from senior Bobby Lecount. After a three-run second inning gave Louisiana Tech a 3-2 lead, senior Parker Hipp hammered a three-run home run in the top of the third. It was Hipp’s eighth homer of the year and RBIs No. 34, 35 and 36 in 2013.
Starting pitcher Casey Collins worked 4.1 innings while striking out two batters and allowing four runs, just one of them earned. Junior Christopher Bradley entered the game in the bottom of the fifth and got through 2.2 innings without giving up a run.
Junior leftfielder Quinnton Mack made a great defensive play in the sixth as the leadoff hitter hit a shot down the line but Mack was able to catch up to the ball to throw the Bulldog out at second base as he attempted to turn a single into a double.
Up by one, Rust tripled in the seventh giving the Aggies some breathing room before senior Evan Mott jumped on the mound in the eighth. Mott finished off the game for the Aggies and tallied his second save of the year. He sat the Bulldogs down 1-2-3 in the eighth and allowed a hit and a wild pitch in the ninth before getting the last batter of the game to line-out to centerfield.
“Hipp is really hitting the ball well right now,” head coach Rocky Ward said. “Collins did ok for us today and he continues to get better and get better. Our pitching staff did very well today. I am proud of the guys.”
Aggies stranded five on Saturday but tallied the six runs on eight hits while the defense committed just one error. Louisiana Tech marked four runs on seven hits while leaving nine runners on the bags.
Left-hander Christopher Bradley got the win as Collins did not work the required amount of innings to get the victory. Bradley is now 4-3 on the year with a 3.71 ERA and 31 K’s. After going 1-for-1 with a walk and two RBIs, Rust is now hitting .400 on the year. Both right fielder Michael Medina and short stop Alex Foulon had 2-of-4 days at the dish and were the only Aggies with multiple hits on the afternoon.
The Aggies take on Louisiana Tech in a doubleheader tomorrow at 12:00 p.m. (MT) with the first game counting as a WAC game. Game two will be a non-conference game with both teams wearing Boston Red Sox hats during that game to honor those affected by the Boston Marathon bombings. Fans can listen to the action live on KSNM AM 570 with Jeff Matthews giving the play-by-play action.