The Aggie baseball team is in Tucson to take on the University of Arizona for a pair of games, one today and one tomorrow and it starts a week of competition for Aggie teams in Tucson as the softball team will be there for a doubleheader tomorrow and the volleyball team plays in a spring tournament this weekend in Tucson. The Wildcats are 16-4 and ranked No. 5 in the country and it's an opportunity for the Aggies to pick up a marquee win or two.
The Aggie baseball team is riding a six-game winning streak and it all started with an impressive double-header sweep of Kent State last Sunday, continued with an impressive 6-2 victory over in-state rival New Mexico on Tuesday and then a three-game sweep of Southeast Missouri State on Friday and Saturday.
The Aggies have put up a ton of runs in the six-game series scoring 72 runs in those six games (an average of 12 per game). However, perhaps lost in that barrage of runs is the fact that the Aggies have gotten outstanding starting pitching in five of the six victories and the one "bad" outing, the Aggie offense put up 23 runs. In the five strong outings, the Aggie starters have thrown 34 innings and given up just nine runs, an ERA of 1.05. That's tremendous and with the way the Aggies can swing the bat, they can beat anyone in the country with pitching performances like that from their starters.
The Aggies also swept the WAC baseball awards this week with Kyle Phillips earning Hitter of the Week and Ryan Beck, the Aggies' ace, earning Pitcher of the Week. It's the first time since joining the WAC that the Aggies have swept the weekly honors and it's the first time any team has done it since the 2010 season.
The Aggies and Wildcats take to the diamond at 6:00 p.m. (MT) with Casey Collins, an Arizona native, taking the mound for the Aggies. He had a splendid outing against UNM in Albuquerque on Tuesday and after a bit of a shaky first inning, really settled in and got some great defensive work behind him.
"It'll be another very good challenge for our kids. It's a very difficult place to play but hopefully we'll play good baseball and win or lose hopefully we'll continue to prove that we can play with the best in the country," said Coach Ward. "On the outside looking in a win goes a long ways to that but I think that more than anything I want to continue to watch the way my players react throughout the game and how they handle situations. I thought they handled Rice pretty well even though we just didn't play real well, it wasn't because we didn't think we could, I think it was because we just didn't. So this is a little different. It's a similar type challenge but with a team that has a little more water under its bridge, a little bit more success and probably a little bit more prepared to take on another top ten opponent."
The game will be streamed live on Aggie Access and tape delayed on KSNM AM 570. Live Stats will be available via the Arizona athletic website.
Aggie Men's Basketball
Teddy Feinberg of the Las Cruces Sun-News blogs his thoughts on the season.
Jason Groves of the Las Cruces Sun-News talks about the Aggie program building postseason expectations.
The Arizona athletic website previews the two-game series.
Teddy Feinberg of the Las Cruces Sun-News features Aggie starting pitcher Michael Ormseth.
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