Lobos Fall by One Run in the Bottom of the Ninth
ALBUQUERQUE N.M. — After a promising lead from the Lobos in the first eight innings, the University of New Mexico baseball team fell short in the bottom of the ninth and ultimately fell by a score of 4-3 to the Gonzaga Bulldogs.
Right-handed pitcher senior Aaron Makil got the start on the mound for the Lobos and pitched through the first six innings, holding the Bulldogs to two runs. Sophomore right-handed pitcher Bobby Meza came in at relief for the seventh inning. Ultimately, senior right-handed pitcher Payton Strambler was credited with the loss after pitching in the ninth inning.
The Lobo offense started strong, with sophomore Mack Chambers scoring the first run at the top of the first inning. After two singles, Chambers made his way to third base. Harry Fullerton then reached first on a fielder’s choice, and Chambers ran home, giving the Lobos a 1-0 lead.
Gonzaga’s Ernie Yake was the player to score the first run for the Bulldogs. After being hit by a pitch and advancing to second the next play, Yake advanced to third on a wild pitch. A single up the middle brought the Bulldog home, tying the game at one-a-piece.
The Lobos jumped ahead again at the top of the fourth after senior Kyler Castillo reached first base on a walk. Fullerton then reached first on a fielding error, advancing Castillo to second. After a strikeout, junior catcher Jack Silverman singled up the middle, allowing Fullerton to move to second, sending Castillo home.
In a similar way that the Bulldogs scored their first run, Gonzaga’s Brett Harris was hit-by-a-pitch in the bottom of the sixth, an error that would lead to the red-shirt senior tying the game.
Senior Kyler Castillo hit a bomb in the top of the eighth, allowing the Lobos to reclaim the lead. The Lobos left two runners on base, which would prove detrimental as the Bulldogs scored two runs in the ninth, beating out the Lobos by one run. Regardless of a stand-out eighth inning from the Lobo defense, the Lobos fell short in closing the game.
The Lobos faced a similar loss last season versus Gonzaga, where the Lobos responded by going 14-4 on the season before the cancellation of games due to COVID-19.
The Lobos will retake the field tomorrow at Noon versus Oregon State. The Lobos will face K-State on Sunday evening before taking on the Beavers again on Monday at 3 p.m. MT.