Aggie Baseball Opens Conference Play With Win
Courtesy: New Mexico State University  
Release:  03/20/2008

LAS CRUCES, N.M. The New Mexico State baseball team opened Western Athletic Conference play with a 7-6 win over San Jose State at Presley Askew Field in Las Cruces, N.M., Thursday, March 20.


Although the Aggies struggled defensively, they found a way to put up seven runs off 12 hits.  NMSU also got a great outing from starting pitcher Tyler Sturdevant (Littleton, Colo.).  Although head coach Rocky Ward knew his team didn’t do as well as they should’ve defensively, he was proud of his starter.


“Studevant pitched great tonight,” Ward said.  “We got the run support we needed from our offense, which was just enough to get the victory.”


Studevant worked six complete innings and gave up only one earned run, while five of the runs that were credited to him came unearned as the Aggie defense committed five errors on the night.  The NMSU offense smacked three home runs in the game with a bomb coming off the bat of senior Joseph Scaperotta (San Diego, Calif.), senior Marcus Quade (Littleton, Colo.) and junior Colin Crouthamel (Elma, Wash.).  Crouthamel now has a team leading five homers on the season.


“It was good to see our offense come alive tonight,” Ward said.  “It happened at the right time.”


The Aggies also got good support from reliever Dillon Smith (El Paso, Texas) who came in to throw for 2 1/3 innings.  He gave up only one run while he faced 11 batters.  Closer Erik Nyquist (Fairfield, Calif.) earned his first save as an Aggie after he came in during the ninth inning to close out the game.


The Spartans scored two unearned runs in the top of the first inning, before NMSU cut the lead in half off a Chris Auten (Agovra Hills, Calif.) double that scored senior Richard Stout who got on with a single.  Stout also stole his conference leading 12th base in the first.


It looked as if SJSU was going to gain momentum after they scored two more unearned runs in the top of the second and held the Aggies scoreless in the bottom of the inning.  However, Quade hit a bomb in the third inning to pull his team to within one run.


Junior Bryan Marquez (Bonny Lake, Wash.) hit a RBI single to left field that scored Crouthamel in the fourth before Scaperotta and Crouthamel came to the plate to hit bombs and take the lead for good.  SJSU tried to make a come back as they scored one run in the sixth and another in the seventh, but the Aggie pitching was on their game Thursday night to get the victory.


The Aggies will face SJSU in a double-header that starts at 3:00 p.m. Friday, March 21 at Presley Askew Field.  Game two of the double-header will be broadcast on KSNM AM 570 with Jeff Matthews giving the play-by-play.  Live stats, a recap and box score of the game will be available for fans at www.nmstatesports.com.

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