The University of New Mexico Softball team spends the third weekend of the season at the UC Riverside Classic and will play five games from Friday to Sunday.
So far this season, the Lobos are 2-8, with four of their eight losses coming against ranked opponents by a combined score of 52-2. The Lobos have scored only 15 runs in 10 games this year as the offense has struggled to get going. Chelsea Johnson is leading the way with six hits so far this season.
The Lobos open the weekend against George Washington University in the first of two meetings on Friday morning at 9 a.m. The two teams will meet again on Sunday morning. The Colonials (3-2) began their season last weekend at the Diamond 9 Citrus Blossom Classic in Florida.
In the circle, George Washington is led by Riverside native, senior Sarah Costlow, who allowed only one run in 13 innings of work last weekend as she helped the team to two wins. In 25 appearances last year, she finished with a 10-9 record and a 2.52 earned run average. Offensively, the Colonials bring a lot of power to the plate, slugging five home runs in as many games so far this year. The offense is led by sophomore catcher Priscilla Martinez, who was named to the All-Atlantic 10 Conference Second Team and the All-Atlantic 10 Rookie team following her freshman campaign. She hit .429 in four games on opening weekend, including a home run in the season opener and a go ahead double in a 3-1 win over Quinnipiac. This is the first time the two teams have faced off.
Friday afternoon the Lobos will take on the host team UC Riverside in the first of two meetings with the Highlanders (7-3). Senior pitcher Tayler Misfeldt (4-2) became the Highlanders all-time wins leader in her last outing, picking up the 41st win of her career. She’s recorded three shutouts so far this season while recording 33 strikeouts on the way to a 2.76 ERA. The offense is lead by senior outfielder Jenna Curtan, leading the team in seven different offensive categories, including batting average (.471), slugging (.618) and on base percentage (.581.). So far, Riverside has excelled at keeping their opponents off the board, winning five of their seven games by way of the shutout. The Lobos will face off against Riverside for the second time on Sunday afternoon in the final game of the weekend.
The final opponent of the weekend and the Lobos only game on Saturday comes against the Montana Grizzlies (1-9). The Grizzlies are the defending Big Sky Tournament champions, winning the title in only the second season in program history. The Grizzlies were picked to finish first in the Big Sky preseason poll. Montana features an Albuquerque native in La Cueva graduate Jessica McAlister, who is hitting .273 in six games so far this season, primarily playing as the designated hitter. The top offensive player for the Grizzlies is shortstop Delene Colburn, who is hitting .393 on the season.
The Lobos will play their first game Friday, Feb. 23 at 10:00 a.m.
Cameron Goeldner is a sports beat reporter and photographer for the Daily Lobo. He primarily covers men’s soccer and softball but also contributes content for baseball, basketball, football and track and field. He can be contacted at email@example.com or on Twitter