Written By: NMM State Athletic Dept.
LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The New Mexico State softball team dropped a one-run affair to Nevada 7-6 at the NM State Softball Complex Friday evening.
After spotting Nevada (15-27, 5-5 WAC) an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first, NM State (19-23, 0-10) looked like the team that beat UNM on the road earlier this week in the bottom of the frame. The Aggies batted around and scored five runs on four hits to take a 5-1 advantage after one.
But the visiting Wolf Pack scored two runs in each of the next two innings to knot the score at 5-5. A two-run home run by Nevada in the top of the fifth broke the tie and provided the winning margin for the visitors. NM State answered with one run off of a Briana Tovio-Asato solo shot in the bottom of the sixth to yield the final score.
Freshman Karysta Donisthorpe started in the circle for the Aggies against Mallary Darby of Nevada.
Nevada hit a two-out home run in the top of the first to claim an early 1-0 edge.
Aggie freshman Malena Padilla started an offensive rally with a one-out double down the right field line in the bottom of the frame. She later moved to third on a passed ball. Senior Tiare Jennings drew a walk to put runners on the corners for NM State.
Sophomore Valerie Swedberg batted in Padilla by reaching safely on a fielder's choice to tie the game 1-1. With runners on first and second, Tovio-Asato doubled down the left field line to score Jennings and put a pair in scoring position with a one-run lead.
Nevada's Darby hit consecutive Aggie batters at the plate as junior Teresa Conrad loaded the bases and freshman Staci Rodriguez collected an RBI when Swedberg scored from third to make it 3-1 NM State.
Freshman Tina Cisneros blooped a single to shallow right field to score Tovio-Asato to push the Aggie advantage to 4-1 and keep the bases loaded. A two-out infield single by junior Amber Olive scored the Crimson and White's final run of the inning to make it 5-1.
With the bases loaded Padilla hammered a long fly ball to deep left field but the Wolf Pack outfielder caught the ball a few feet shy of the wall to end the inning and save Nevada from a deeper deficit.
The Pack hit another two-out homer in the top of the second to score a pair of runs and cut the Aggie lead to 5-3.
In the top of the third Nevada loaded the bases against Donisthorpe with one out which caused an Aggie pitching change to junior Alex Newman. The Wolf Pack welcomed Newman with a sacrifice fly to score one run and an infield single to plate another and tie the game at 5-5.
Nevada broke the tie with its third two-out home run to left field of the game to score another pair of runs and give the Pack a 7-5 advantage.
Tovio-Asato blasted the third home run of her Aggie career down the left field line to cut the Wolf Pack lead to 7-6 in the bottom of the fifth. But Darby and the Nevada defense held the Aggies off the scoreboard the rest of the way to earn the win.
Darby improved to 7-12 with the win and Donisthorpe dropped to 6-8 with the loss.
The Wolf Pack and Aggies conclude the series with a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 4 p.m. The first game of the twin bill can be seen on AggieVision with play-by-play from Kyle Doperalski and analysis from Melanie Viramontes. The series finale can be heard on KSNM 570 AM with play-by-play from Doperalski.