Aggie Baseball Ends Season With 9-5 Loss To Top Seed Sacramento State

MESA, ARIZ. - The New Mexico State Aggie baseball team's 2014 season came to an end as they fell 9-5 to top seeded Sacramento State on Friday afternoon. Playing in their third consecutive elimination game, the Aggies were unable to stave off elimination a third time. Coming off a 7-4 victory over 2-seed UTPA 90 minutes earlier, the Aggies fell behind 4-0 in the first as left-hander Robert Kraft, starting his second game of the day, could not sustain his earlier sharpness. Kraft started the game giving up a full count walk which was then followed by two singles and a double to score three Hornet runs. Kraft was lifted for Zach Freeman who came in and recorded a sacrifice fly out giving Sacramento State a 4-0 lead. He got out of the inning with a ground out but the Aggies trailed 4-0.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Baseball Knocks Off 2-Seed UTPA 7-4, Faces Top Seed Sacramento State In Elimination Game

MESA, ARIZ. - Facing their second straight elimination game, the New Mexico State baseball team once again got the offense going early scoring three runs in the bottom of the second on a bases clearing triple by senior Taylor Noyer to take a 3-0 lead. The Aggies would tack on another run in the bottom of the third on an RBI single from Kyle Young driving in Michael Paulson who led off the inning by reaching on an error by the shortstop.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Ward Interview :: 05/22/14 :: Seattle Recap/Day Three Preview Obviously not surprised by this team’s ability to bounce back from adversity, they’ve done it all year. Maybe the most impressive thing about today’s win and a bit of a good sign was that this is maybe the first time this season that the bats, the pitching and the defense have all shown up at the same game.
Rocky Ward: That’s true. We turned two big plays in the game that were at key times. Conard was very good. He located well. He didn’t have great stuff, he was hampered by the ankle. He only went 70-something pitches and went out in the sixth with 66 pitches and got in a little bit of trouble and I went out just to give him a little bit of a breather and asked him how he was doing and he said, “I’m about done.” I’m going, “Well, get me a double play because I’ve gotta get [Riley] Barr ready and he’s not ready yet.” He says, “Okay coach.” He goes out and gets a fly ball to the outfield and I go out and take him out, “You promised me a double play.” He goes, “I know but I got an out didn’t I?” It was pretty funny.

The kid did a nice job and Barr came in and gave up a rocket to center for the third out. They hit a lot of balls hard. We had a pretty good baseball luck day. When Freeman came in he had two hard hit balls per inning almost. In the last inning he had three strikeouts but he gave up some balls that were hit pretty hard. But he did what you’re supposed to do when you’re up 7-1, go throw strikes, don’t walk anyone and make them earn it and he did a nice job. It was a good day.

The problem is in the tournament is we can’t have a crushing defeat followed by another victory so we’ve got to figure out how to do this back-to-back. The only disappointment I have is I wanted to be Utah Valley. I wanted to be the team that went out and lined up Sam Street and beat him which is what they just did 9-2. I thought we had the same capability to do what Utah Valley just did but that’s okay. We live to play another day and the good thing about it is as hard as it is to go the nighttime and then the morning game is now we have some time off. We’ve been kind of hanging out at the hotel feeling good and I’m going to go out and watch the Sacramento game for a little bit and kind of enjoy the evening and then get up and do the same thing tomorrow. Of course it’s one of those deals where you have to win two to get back into the mix. But that’s okay. That’s kind of the deal. It’s survival mode and the last few tournaments we haven’t been able to win the second game so this is kind of new territory. You’re coming off of a win and I’ve always felt like from watching tournament, we did it a couple times in my times at Oklahoma State where we lost early and came through the loser’s bracket playing teams that were coming off of defeats while we were winning. So you kind of build your won miniature winning streak while you’re taking teams off of loses. It’s a unique thing if you can kind of maintain it and get back to a final, you’ve got a lot of momentum. It’s a matter of whether you have enough pitching left. We’re a little bit short there. We’ll have to continue to have good offensive games, play good defense and maybe pitch into a little bit of good luck and have another day like today where we only walk two. You make the opponent earn it.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Baseball Defeats Seattle 7-3 In WAC Tournament Elimination Game

MESA, ARIZ. - Coming off of a heartbreaking loss just hours earlier, the New Mexico State baseball team bounced back with a 7-3 victory over SeattleU in the first elimination game of the 2014 conference tournament. The Aggies never trailed in the game as they slowly built a lead with single runs in the third, fourth and sixth innings before striking a decisive blow with a three-run eighth inning.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Ward Interview :: 05/22/14 Tough loss last night against Utah Valley. Very similar situation to Bakersfield a couple of weeks ago.
Rocky Ward: Almost identical except we played better in Bakersfield, we didn’t blow an 8-1 lead and walk 11 guys. It’s the same deal. In that one we had to play one the next day so it wasn’t much different than today. We’ll hope to get a good outing out of Billy and we continue to swing the bats well. That was very quality offensive day against their pitcher. We kept coming at him and it was the type of offense we thought we’d need in the tournament. We just didn’t get it done from the mound. There were a lot of good things that the team did last night despite the loss, just like against Bakersfield. How do get the kids to remember that?
RW: We talk about it and they remember it as well as we do. Again, we’ve talked a lot over the years about the experiences individual teams have and to be able to come off of tough losses and win is something you can lean on a little bit. If we can do that again and get into the tournament and live another day and then see how things work out. This is the most difficult game that anybody plays on both sides. My experience has been it’s always been kind of an ugly game. Both teams in particular, Seattle is coming off a walk-off loss yesterday themselves in a game in which they led 4-1 at one point. Close enough. They had a pretty good lead and they let them get back in it. Same type of deal. The only advantage they have is they have four or five more hours to get it out of their system than we’ve had. The ballpark seems to be playing very fair.
RW: It’s a lot more fair than Hohokam. It’s a big park. It’s still a pretty large park, it’s 410 to center but most of the stuff that should get to the gaps. It’s a good fair yard. I like the setup, I like the field. The field has played well. It’s a desert field and they have the same problems we have with such low humidity, it’s hard to keep the field soft. The ball has stayed down, it’s not jumpy, it’s a pretty good infield to play.

Aggie Baseball Loses Heartbreaker To Utah Valley In WAC Tournament Opener

MESA, ARIZ. - The New Mexico State baseball lost in heartbreaking fashion in their opening game of the 2014 WAC Baseball Championship tournament falling 11-10 to Utah Valley.

The Aggie offense got rolling early putting up four runs in the first inning to take a 4-0 lead. The Aggies added another run in the top of the second on an RBI single from Derek Umphres. Utah Valley would answer with a run in the bottom of the inning on a bunt single down the third base line.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Symington Resigns As Offensive Line Coach

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - New Mexico State head football coach Doug Martin announced on Wednesday that offensive line coach Chris Symington has resigned from his position due to on-going health issues. A search for his replacement is already underway.

“Right now our concern is for Chris’ health and helping him get better,” Martin said. “Myself and the staff support coach Symington and will do everything we can to help him. His health is more important right now than the game of football.”

Russell-Nava Returns To Aggie Women’s Basketball Staff

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - New Mexico State women’s basketball head coach Mark Trakh announced Monday afternoon that former Aggie Cecilia Russell-Nava has returned to Las Cruces as an assistant coach. Trakh also announced the Erica Sanchez has moved into the Director of Player Development position.

"We are excited to add Cece (Cecilia) to our staff,” Trakh said. “She is well known, respected and loved by our fans in the Las Cruces community having played for the Aggies. She is experienced and is a tireless worker. Cecilia will be an excellent recruiter and floor coach."

"I am very excited for this opportunity to return to my alma mater,” Russell-Nava said. “Coach Trakh is a great coach and I look forward to working with him and his staff, who are not only amazing coaches but wonderful people. Las Cruces is an area I love and call home. I know under Mark's leadership, the WAC title will only be the beginning.”  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Ward Interview :: 05/19/14 You get Utah Valley on Wednesday, you catch a little bit of a break in that you play at 7:00 instead of the first game of the tournament at 3:00 in the heat of the day.
Rocky Ward: And that’s something we seem to have been drawing forever. Even when we were the two seed a couple years ago, we got the afternoon game. It’s a good draw. It’s an evening game, even though the weather isn’t going to be bad. It’s in the mid to upper-80s so we’re not dealing with the 100-degree heat and so it’s not going to be much different than what we’ve been dealing with at home.

The draw is good. Two reasons why. One we assume Bradley is going to be healthy and ready to go. He had a back issue that we had to skip him for the weekend. He got an injection in his back and he’s feeling a lot better. I was really worried about the fact that he just went on a six and a half hour bus ride. That’s not good for guy’s backs, anybody, healthy people’s backs. But when we stopped to eat about halfway he was feeling good. Hopefully that’ll hold out and he’ll be able to go on Wednesday and I think that Utah Valley has a weakness against left-handers. Their best players are their three, four and five-hole hitters and their three and five-hole hitters are switch hitters and they’re better left-handed hitters. Bradley had them no-hit through five in the Friday game and actually pitched well. It was a 1-0 game in the seventh and they scored three in the eighth and four in the ninth to beat us 8-1. It was a well-played baseball game. Riley Barr came in and made a mistake to their four-hole guy and he hit a two-run home run and then gave up another solo home run. He didn’t really pitch bad, it’s a Friday game and we threw the wrong pitch to the wrong guy before we knew it was the wrong pitch to the wrong guy. So, I think the matchup is good.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Baseball Falls To Chicago State 8-5

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The New Mexico State baseball team lost its second-straight game to Chicago State, 8-5, on Friday at Presley Askew Field. The Aggies fall to 19-29 on the season and 10-13 in Western Athletic Conference play while the Cougars are now 17-35 and 5-18 in WAC competition.

Even with the loss, NM State punched its ticket into the WAC Tournament next week after Sacramento State defeated North Dakota earlier in the day.

The Aggies were outhit 14-10 on Friday and committed three errors on the night. Catcher Kevin Carswell, right fielder Michael Paulson and left fielder Joe Koerper each had two hits on the night for NM State. One of Paulson’s hits was his first home run of the season.

Sophomore right-hander Zach Freeman was saddled with the loss after pitching into the sixth and allowing five runs on eight hits. Freeman falls to 3-6.  Continue Reading This Post >>