GREELEY, Colo. – Right hand pitcher Riley Barr worked 7.1 innings on the mound for the New Mexico State baseball team picking up a season-high eight strikeouts as the Aggies held off Northern Colorado to win 7-4, Saturday, April 5 in Greeley, Colo. NM State is now back to .500 in Western Athletic Conference play at 4-4 and 12-18 overall on the year.
Barr allowed only two runs and walked just three of the 35 batters he faced and dropped his ERA to 2.60 on the year. Closer Trey Gonzales entered the game in the eighth and, although he allowed two runs to cross the plate, earned his fifth save of the year.
The Aggies who were playing the corners on the infield on Saturday, brought in 6-of-7 runs scored. First baseman Kritoffer Koerper when 2-of-4 with a double, a walk and three RBI, while third baseman Derek Umphres posted a 1-of-3 day with two sacrifice flies and three RBI. Koerper is hitting a team-best .350 on the year with a team-high27 RBI and Umphres is second on the team in batting average (.345) and second in RBI (23).
Neither team scored until the sixth inning when each team crossed the plate twice. NM State took a 5-2 lead after a Northern Colorado reliever struggled giving up three walks, hitting one batter and throwing a wild pitch. Freshman Matt Evans was the first to score for the Aggies in the innings crossing the dish on a wild pitch. Catcher Taylor Noyer scored on a walk by Kristoffer Koerper when the bases were loaded and senior outfielder Michael Medina was the last Aggie to score as he came in on a sacrifice fly by Umphres.
NM State scored two more runs on three hits in the top of the ninth when Koerper and Umphres each marking an RBI before the Bears put together a two-run rally that was stopped by the Aggie defense and closer.
NM State faces Northern Colorado in the series finale, Sunday, April 6 at 12 p.m. (MT) in Greeley, Colo.