The University of New Mexico baseball team had a tough time controlling Fresno State’s bats Friday evening.
The Bulldogs (18-11, 5-8 MW) managed to pick up 16 hits in the game on their way to a 15-5 victory at Santa Ana Star Field.
FSU got off to a quick start at the top of the first inning. Its leadoff hitter was walked, before junior Jeremiah Burks doubled to center field, advancing the runner on first to third base. Then, after a quick out, sophomore Carter Bins doubled again to score both runners on base and make it a two-run game. The Bulldogs added one more run later in the frame, to take a quick 3-0 lead.
UNM (12-15-1, 6-7 MW), though, quickly responded in the bottom of the inning. Senior Danny Collier, the Lobos’ leadoff hitter, reached base on a throwing error before freshman Derek Marshall botched a one-out single, scoring Collier in the process and moving junior Jared Mang, who had walked prior to Marshall’s at-bat, to third base. Freshman Connor Mang then scored his brother on the ensuing at-bat to bring the Lobos within one run, 3-2, in the bottom of the first. That’s all they’d get, though, in the frame as sophomore Robby Campillo grounded out.
FSU added another run in the top of the second inning on a leadoff homer from freshman Miles Tomczak, and then one more in the top of the third inning on a fielding error, which scored a runner on third who had hit a triple prior to that, giving the Bulldogs a 5-2 advantage.
In the bottom of the third inning, however, UNM responded with one run of its own. Collier led off the frame with a double and was then scored on a single from junior Hayden Schilling to give the Lobos their third run.
But just like in innings prior, FSU’s offense had an answer for the Lobos’ pitching at every corner. In the top of the fourth, sophomore Justin Slaten, UNM’s starting pitcher, hit the first batter and line drive before he was switched out for sophomore reliever Nathaniel Garley. But FSU’s runner, who was hit by a pitch earlier in the inning, scored on a wild pitch from Garley to make it 6-3 Bulldogs.
Garley gave up two FSU hits and a run in the top of the fifth inning, but was able to close out the frame without any more damage. That’s when, in the bottom of the inning, UNM was able to add a run of its own on an RBI double from Marshall, who scored Jared Mang to trim the Bulldogs’ lead to 7-4.
But in the top of the sixth inning FSU added another two runs, though the Lobos added a run in the bottom of the frame to trim the Bulldogs’ lead to just four runs again, 9-5.
After FSU added one more run in the top of the seventh inning, they exploded for a five run inning in the eighth all while holding the Lobos scoreless over that time. In the top of the eighth, FSU led off the frame with a solo homer, before it got another run on an RBI single and then a three-run triple to take a 15-5 lead over the Lobos.
And UNM couldn’t answer. In the last three innings, the Lobos were held scoreless on their way to their fifth loss at home this season.
Three freshmen, Marshall, Garrett Gouldsmith and Brayden Merritt, each had two hits for the Lobos. Marshall, however, had two RBI to his name.
On a 1-for-3 night, Jared Mang was able to score two runs while Collier also scored two runs too.
The Lobos will face FSU in game two on Saturday at 2 p.m.
Matthew Narvaiz is a senior sports reporter for the Daily Lobo. He primarily covers men’s and women’s basketball, and baseball. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @matt_narvaiz.