ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The San José State University baseball team out-hit New Mexico 15-14 but lost 8-3 to the Lobos on Sunday afternoon at the Santa Ana Star Field.
The Spartans were swept in the Mountain West conference road opening series and are now 6-8 overall on the season and 2-4 in conference play. The Lobos are 11-3 (6-0 MW).
SJSU generated a season-high 15 hits but only managed to score three runs. Fourteen of the 15 hits were singles with the only extra base hit coming in the ninth on Justin Beck’s (3-for-4, 2R, RBI) bloop double.
Kyle Blakeman (1-for-2, RBI) got the Spartans on the board in the second inning when he got a RBI infield hit to third base. The RBI was his first as a Spartan and it drove in Justin Beck (3-for-4, 2R, RBI) to put the Spartans up 1-0.
In the bottom of the second, New Mexico’s powerful lineup put up two runs against Spartans’ starter Graham Gomez to go up 2-1. Dan Collier hit a solo homer and Jack Zoellner doubled to score Carl Stajduhar.
The Lobos came into the game hitting .355 as a team and averaging more than 10 runs per game.
Gomez kept the Lobo lineup in check, holding them to just two runs in 4 2/3 innings, scattering seven hits, walking two and striking out three.
Down one run in the top of the sixth, the Spartans strung together three consecutive singles to start the inning. Beck, Kyle Morrison (2-for-5) and Chris Williams (3-for-4, RBI) each singled to tie the game up at 2-2. New Mexico’s starting pitcher Luis Gonzalez, also the leading hitter in the Mountain West, was removed in favor of Justin Slaten.
The Spartans had an opportunity to tack on additional runs when they had Morrison at third and Williams at first with no out. However, Williams was caught stealing second and Slaten struck out the next two Spartan batters to get out of the inning.
SJSU’s bullpen could not maintain the 2-2 tie when the Lobos scored five runs in the bottom of the sixth on five hits, a hit batter, a wild pitch and an intentional walk from three Spartan relievers.
The Spartans and Lobos added a run each the rest of the game for the final 8-3 score.
Jake Swiech was charged with three hits and four earned runs for his first loss of the season. Slaten earned the win for the Lobos and is now 2-0 on the season.
Freshman Kellen Strahm singled in the fifth to extend his hit streak to 11 games.
The Spartans will remain on the road but return to the Pacific Time Zone to play at Cal State Fullerton on Tuesday, March 14 at 4:00 p.m. PT.