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Lobos Take Third Round of Rio Grande Rivalry

by Alma Solis

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The University of New Mexico baseball team defeated in-state rival New Mexico State for the third time this season, winning Tuesday night’s matchup by a score of 13-7 at Santa Ana Star Field. This is the first time in six years that the Lobos have defeated the Aggies at home (April 26, 2016- W, 10-4).

Braydon Runion and Willie Cano broke out as today’s Lobo leaders, notching three hits apiece. Runion went 3-for-5 with two runs, while Cano had a 3-for-5 night with three runs and two RBI. Lenny Junior Ashby had two hits on the game, both of them solo home runs. Ashby now has 14 home runs on the season. Earning his first career start, freshman Benjamin Baker-Livingston dominated the mound as he allowed just one run on four hits in 4.0 innings pitched, while fanning five batters and ultimately earning his first win.

The Aggies opened scoring in the top of the first as they brought in a run on a RBI single. The Lobos quickly responded in the bottom of the frame as Kamron Willman and Ashby went back-to-back with solo home runs each on the first pitch they saw, taking the 2-1 advantage.

The second and third innings went scoreless as Baker-Livingston was dealing for the Lobos, forcing three groundouts, a flyout and a strikeout. The freshman also earned all three outs in the fourth via the strikeout.

New Mexico extended their lead to 5-1 in the bottom of the fourth on a sacrifice fly by Sean Stephens that scored Kyle Landers and a single by Chase Weissenborn that brought home Willie Cano.

New Mexico State plated a couple of runs in the top of the fifth to cut their deficit to 5-3, but the Lobos responded right back with four in the bottom of the frame. Ashby was hit by a pitch to start the inning, then advanced to third on a single by Runion. Landers was then hit by pitch to load the bases for Cano. Cano watched the first pitch outside the strike zone, then unleashed on the second pitch which he hit for a two-run single to drive in Ashby and Runion.

Stephens then walked to load the bases once again, this time for Johnny Podsednik. Podsednik watched the first pitch land in the zone, before he hit a single of his own which also scored two runs as Kyle Landers and Willie Cano made it home to make the Lobo lead 9-3.

The Aggies then brought around four runs in the top of the sixth frame, cutting their deficit to 9-7. Like usual, the Lobos had an answer in the bottom of the inning, bringing home a trio of runs. Runion and Cano singled, while Olson walked to load the bases. Throw in a couple of outs via popout and flyout, the Lobos had a bases-loaded, two out situation to work with. Back-to-back singled by Stephens and Podsednik brought home all three of Runion, Cano and Olson to extend New Mexico’s advantage to 12-7.

New Mexico added another run as Ashby again saw a pitch he liked and sent a solo home run out on the first pitch of his seventh inning at-bat.

Terrel Hudson was dealing through the final 3.2 innings, allowing no runs on just four hits to the Aggies and earning his first save of the season. The Lobos took their third win against in-state rival with a final score of 13-7 at Santa Ana Star Field.

New Mexico’s record improves to 19-28 overall, while New Mexico State drops to 18-27 overall.

The Lobos take their last road trip of the season, heading to Berkeley, Calif., to face California for a three-game nonconference series from Friday-Sunday. After that, the Lobos will clsoe out their season with four straight home games, including a midweek matchup against New Mexico State on May 17 and a three-game set against Air Force on May 19-21.

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