ALBUQUERQUE - The New Mexico State baseball team defeated No. 22 New Mexico by the score of 14-10 at Isotopes Park in Albuquerque, Tuesday, March 9.
With the win, NM State goes to 10-6 on the year, while the Lobos fall to 8-5 on the season. Sophomore Scott Coffman, an Albuquerque native, was credited with the win and goes to 1-1 on the year. He worked 3.1 innings and struck out five of the 14 batters he faced, while giving up only three hits and not allowing a ball.
"Coffman was brilliant today and he went out and played outstanding," head coach Rocky Ward said. "He showed leadership today by coming in with some pressure against our in-state rival and threw well."
Adam Heredia, a Las Cruces native, and Roswell native Justin Cooper also chipped in throwing a combined 4.1 innings, while left hander Ryan Beck threw 1.1 innings.
Leading the way offensively for NM State was junior shortstop Ryan Aguayo, who posted a 3-for-6 day with two RBI and three runs scored. Senior Ben Harty also had a great day at the dish as he two hits and five RBI, four coming off a grand slam.
"After we lost the way we did on Sunday, I told the team they had to get ready for the next game," Ward said. "We bounced back and put together a really good offensive day."
There were two scoreless innings before Harty blasted a grand slam in the top of the third giving NM State a 4-0 lead. It was sixth home run of the season.
The Aggie lead was squeezed to one run after UNM crossed the plate three times in the bottom of the fourth. NM State came right back in the top of the fifth inning putting up four more runs, two of which came off a two-RBI single to centerfield by senior Leo Aguirre.
Although UNM scored twice in the bottom of the fifth, senior Chace Perkins, who entered the game as a sub, made an outstanding play in centerfield as he had to chase down a hard hit ball and run up the hill that is out in center to make an amazing catch. After the fifth, the Aggies had an 8-5 lead, however, UNM tied the game in the bottom of sixth after two Lobo base runners crossed the plate on a single and the third run came in on a balk by the Aggie pitcher. There were three balks called on the NM State pitching staff and no balks called on the Lobos.
The Aggies regained the lead in the top of the seventh when Aguayo hit a single to left field for two RBI and senior Mike Sodders doubled to centerfield for two RBI of his own.
With a 12-8 lead heading into the eighth, UNM seemed to want to build a come-back as they tallied two runs to pull to within two. The Aggies fired right back in the top of the ninth with two runs of their own to go up 14-10 before Coffman came in to strikeout two batters in the bottom of the inning and get one batter to pop up to second base.
The Aggies conclude the 2010 series with UNM, Wednesday, March 10 at Isotopes Park. Game time is set for 3:00 p.m. (MT). A radio broadcast will be tape delayed at 6:00 p.m. (MT) on KSNM AM 570 with Jeff Matthews giving the play-by-play action.