A five-run seventh inning, highlighted by a three-run home run by Jared Mang, gave the Lobos a 12-10 victory over Mountain West Conference foe San Diego State on Sunday in the rubber match of a three-game series at Tony Gwynn Field.
Mang, the leading hitter in MWC regular season play in 2017, went 3-5, with six RBI and three runs scored for UNM. First baseman Jack Zoellner and right fielder Andre Vigil each added three hits apiece, while relief pitcher Christian Tripp tossed three shutout innings in relief to close out the game.
“It’s all about the fight in the Lobo dog,” UNM coach Ray Birmingham said via GoLobos.com. “It’s about fighting to win for what’s right and the great state of New Mexico.
The fight in the Lobo dog proved to be strong on Sunday, as the Lobos moved to 16-3-1 in MWC play while the Aztecs fell to 14-7 after losing two of three games over the weekend to UNM.
The two teams entered the critical three-game series just one game apart in the race for the MWC regular season title, with the Lobos leaving San Diego victorious and in a good position to win the crown with nine conference games left on their schedule, including two home series against Air Force and Nevada.
The Lobos took an early one-run lead in the second inning on a RBI single by Vigil to left field, but the Aztecs responded with a three-run home run by third baseman David Hensley. The two teams would score runs in four of the next five frames before Mang put the Lobos up for good with a clutch three-run bomb off of relief pitcher Alan Trejo.
“I was going up there looking for a heater as he threw only one pitch to Beau,” Mang said. “I figured he was going to try and establish the fastball before he threw me anything soft and I got it.”
Got it indeed, and the Lobos never looked back as Tripp closed out the game for Birmingham and the Lobos.
UNM will take on in-state rival New Mexico State at home on Tuesday before hosting Air Force over the weekend at Santa Ana Star Field. Be sure to catch all the action on ESPN Radio 101.7 The TEAM.