Softball Comeback Falls Short

Las Cruces, N.M.-The Spartan softball team used comeback after comeback Friday night, but fell just short as New Mexico State led off the eighth inning with a home run to defeat San Jose State 7-6 in the two team's Western Athletic Conference opener.

 

After falling behind 4-0 after two innings, San Jose State slowly chipped away at the Aggie as Alex Stange hit the first of two Spartan two-run home runs on the night.  She hit a drive to left field in the fourth inning to score herself and Sadie Coenen who started the inning with a single.

 

New Mexico State responded in the bottom of the inning with a run to take a 5-2 lead, but the Spartans did not give up.

 

Freshman Jessica Garcia hit a shot down the left field line in the fifth inning for her second home run of the season.  She drove in pinch runner Stephanie Ziemann to cut the Aggie lead to 5-4.

 

Despite the Aggies extending their lead in the bottom of the fifth to 6-4, San Jose State responded in the top of the sixth with two more runs to tie the game at 6-6.  Cheryl Freitas began the inning with a single and eventually scored on an Aggie throwing error.  Stange then scored as Amanda Schatz reached on another New Mexico State error.

 

The two teams remained tied until the bottom of the eighth inning when the nation's leading slugger Hoku Nohara hit her 19th home run of the season to give New Mexico State the 7-6 win.

 

Spartan pitcher Jennifer Ames pitched a complete game as her record fell to 5-8 on the season.

 

"We played inspired today and fought the entire game," said Spartan head coach Peter Turner.  "I will take tonight's effort with this young team.  We knew we could score and just had to not hit it at someone.  We did not make a mistake defensively which helped us in our comeback.  We just need to get out of the first inning without giving up run."

 

The two teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. PDT.   Live stats and a live video stream are available on the New Mexico State web site at www.nmstatesports.com.

 

WAC Game

Las Cruces, N.M.

 

New Mexico State            7            San Jose State            6            8 innings

San Jose State                        000            222            00            --            6              5            0

New Mexico State            310            110            01            --            7            16            5

Ames and Schatz.  Newman, Walker (5) and Clifton.  WP - Walker (1-4).  LP - Ames (5-8).  HR - Stange, J. Garcia (SJS); Nohara (NMS).  2B - Jennings, Conrad, Swedberg (NMS).  3 hits - Randall, Conrad (NMS).  2 hits - Jennibs, Maroda, Clifton (NMS).  2 RBI - Stange, J. Garcia (SJS); Conrad, Clifton (NMS).  Records - San Jose State 13-19, 0-1; New Mexico State 20-10, 1-0.  

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