CBB Visit: New Mexico 3 Texas 1 (Feb. 21st)

MaxWilletUNM2 It was a battle of great pitching and great hitting as the Lobos from New Mexico played against the top-ranked Texas Longhorns in the rubber match of the opening series.

Sophomore Austin Dicharry took the mound in hopes of keeping the Longhorns from dropping their first weekend series since going 0-2-1 against an A.J. Morris led Kansas State Wildcats last April, while junior LHP Mike LaChappelle was tabbed to take the mound for New Mexico.

Both teams left a runner stranded at third base in the first inning, setting the tone for the matchup.

New Mexico loaded the bases in the second frame with only one out, but Dicharry pitched his way out of trouble with a pair of strike outs to end the Lobo threat.

Texas RF Kevin Keyes flied out to the right field wall with two runners on to end the third.

New Mexico RF Kenny Held hit a deep double off the centerfield wall, scoring CF Max Willett from second to give New Mexico a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth.

In surprising style, Keyes displayed some hidden speed to beat out a bunt to first and advance to third on a single by DH Russell Moldenhauer. CF Connor Rowe picked up his fourth RBI of the year one batter later with a grounder through the left side, scoring Keyes and tying the game.

Lobo 3B Alex Allbritton led off the seventh inning with a single to right. Consecutive ground balls moved him to third base before 1B Justin Howard singled off reliever Andrew McKirahan, scoring Allbritton to give New Mexico the 2-1 lead.

After Longhorn reliever Stayton Thomas picked up a pair of strikeouts to start the 8th, Willett hit a scorching double down the left field line, and came around to score on a single up the middle by Held, increasing the Lobo lead to two runs.

Longhorn assistant coach Tommy Harmon finished the game in the locker room after a disagreement with the home plate umpire over a pair of strike calls that ended the Longhorns’ eighth inning. Harmon, as well as the home crowd, felt the pitches were too far outside to be considered strikes.

Rowe struck out to start the ninth inning against RHP Edwin Carl.Longhorn 3B Kevin Lusson followed with a walk before the Lobos went to their pen and brought in lefty Jason Oatman to face pinch-hitter Cohl Walla. Walla picked up his first career hit on a single through the left side to move Lusson over to second. In response, New Mexico went back to the bullpen, bringing in LHP Gera Sanchez to face yet another freshman pinch hitter, Jordan Weymouth.

Sanchez got Weymouth swinging at strike three, taking the Longhorns down to their final out of the series. With a 1-2 start on the line, sophomore SS Brandon Loy grounded into a 6-4 fielder’s choice to end the contest.

Texas coach Augie Garrido was not as upset with today’s contest as he was after the loss on Saturday. Garrido felt that his team played their best game of the weekend, but came up just short against a great club from Albuquerque.

LaChappelle picked up the win in his first game as a Lobo, while Dicharry was saddled with the loss. Sanchez worked two thirds of an inning to get the save for Ray Birmingham’s club.

New Mexico (2-1) will travel to Lubbock on Tuesday to take on Texas Tech, while Texas (1-2) hosts Dallas Baptist in Austin.