NM State was outhit 18-10 during game one of the doubleheader. Billy Conard made the start for the Aggies but could not get out of the fourth after allowing eight runs.
The Aggies struck first as designated hitter Ryan Wagner belted a shot to straight-away center field for his third home run of the season. NM State led early 1-0 after two innings.
The lead wouldn’t last, however, as the Golden Grizzlies came back with six runs in the top half of the third off Conard. The inning started with an error by Aggie second baseman Jory Goldstrom. Six hits and a hit batsman later, NM State saw itself in a 6-1 hole.
The Aggies got one back after right fielder Michael Medina scored on a wild pitch from Oakland starter Tim Koons during the bottom of the third, but another NM State error in the top of the fourth led to one of two runs for the Golden Grizzlies. Oakland led 8-2 midway through the fourth inning.
NM State, however, would come storming back over the next two innings. Sophomore shortstop Kent Blackstone led off the bottom of the fourth with a solo shot to right field, his first of the season. Center fielder Kyle Young followed with a single and later scored on an RBI sacrifice fly by junior Michael Paulson.
The bigger inning for the Aggies, however, came in the fifth. Sophomore third baseman Derek Umphres started the inning with a double down the left-field line. Blackstone followed with another double to pick up his second RBI of the ballgame.
After Young reached first on a walk, Medina came up and hit a three-run bomb over right field that knotted up the game at eight midway through the contest. It was Medina’s first home run in his Aggie career.
Blackstone went 3-for-5 on the day as he and Medina both ended up with three RBIs.
Junior left-hander Trey Higginbotham came on in relief and pitched a scoreless fifth and sixth inning. The seventh, unfortunately, wasn’t so kind to the NM State hurler.
Higginbotham allowed five-consecutive singles to start off the inning before being pulled for sophomore Zach Freeman. The damage was done, however, as the Golden Grizzlies scored four runs in the inning to take a 12-8 lead heading to the seventh inning stretch. Higginbotham was saddled with his second loss of the season.
The Aggies cut the lead in half with two runs in the eighth but that would be as close as they would get. Oakland added a couple more runs in the ninth to take a 14-10 lead. NM State could only muster up one run in its half of the ninth as the Golden Grizzlies took game one 14-11.
Game two had an ugly start to it as both teams committed a couple of errors in the first inning. Oakland took advantage of the Aggie errors to the tune of three runs while NM State got two back off of the Golden Grizzlies’ errors.
Up 3-2 in the third, Oakland got another three runs off of Aggie starter Robert Kraft. The Golden Grizzlies had five hits in the inning. The damage could have been greater, but a 2-5-3 double play with no outs kept Oakland from having a bigger inning. The Golden Grizzlies led 6-2 after three innings of play.
Neither team would push runs across the plate in the fourth, fifth or sixth as the score remained in Oakland’s favor, 6-2. The Golden Grizzles added one more run in the top of the seventh, bringing their lead to 7-2.
The Aggies scored in the bottom of the eighth inning after loading the bases. Kyle Kilgore hit a sac fly to score Koerper from third, making it 7-3 going into the ninth inning. NM State would load the bases in the bottom of the ninth but could not produce any runs, as Oakland came away with the win, 7-3.
In game two, the Aggies scored three runs on seven hits, led by Blackstone who recorded three hits. Koerper recorded two hits, while Paulson and Medina each collected a base knock. Kraft took the loss for NM State, going six full innings, allowing six runs on nine hits and striking out seven batters.
The Aggies will be back in action on Sunday beginning at 1:05 p.m. AggieVision will carry the game.