Lobo Baseball Begins Conference Play Against SDSU

March 14, 2012

Complete Series Notes: Lobos vs. SDSU Get Acrobat Reader

Lobo Baseball - at home in Isotopes Park
6 p.m. (MT), Saturday 2 p.m. (MT), Sunday 12 p.m. (MT)
San Diego State Aggies
Gametracker, recap and stats

• GameTracker, box score and recap will all be available on GoLobos.com.
• ESPN 101.7 The Team will not be picking up the coverage of these games as originally scheduled due to conflict with the NCAA basketball tournament.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - The Lobos continue their homestand as they begin conference play when they host the San Diego State Aztecs this weekend at Isotopes Park. Game one is slated to begin at 6 p.m. MT on Friday. The Lobos will be looking to make an impression on the rest of the conference when they face SDSU.

Against SDSU: UNM trails in the all-time series against the Aztecs. The two teams met three times last season with the result ending in SDSU taking two games from the Lobos. The teams will also get together for three games in San Diego from April 13-15.

Series Record: 55-97
Home: 29-32; Away: 23-60; Neutral: 3-5

Up Next: UNM will host the preseason Mountain West favorite TCU Horned Frogs at Isotopes Park in a three-game series starting next Friday, March 23 at 6 p.m.

SCOUTING THE AZTECS ... The San Diego State Aztecs have opened their 2012 season with a 9-8 record including winning 6 of their past 8 games. They recently lost two out of three games to the St. Mary’s Gaels. The Aztecs have a balanced offense, with six regulars batting over .300.

FLEET OF FOOT ... After stealing two bases against NMSU, senior Ben Woodchick has set a new personal career-high with six. He only had four career steals coming into this season.

TAKE TWO ... Josh Melendez stole home against NMSU for his second swipe of home this season. He also stole home against UTSA on Feb. 25.

BRING OUT THE BROOM ... The Lobos’ sweep of the No. 22 Gonzaga Bulldogs was the first sweep of a top-25 team in the Birmingham era.


We Really Are New Mexico ... The 2012 New Mexico baseball team has 13 players from the state of New Mexico. It is no secret coach Ray Birmingham wants to take local kids all the way to Omaha. Ever since he got to UNM, he has been a big advocate of recruiting the best local talent New Mexico has to offer.

UNM top 40 in attendance ... The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association re- leased its weekly attendance report of the season and the New Mexico Lobos have come in at No. 37 after hosting their second home weekend series against Oklahoma.

LOBOS SWEEP WEEKLY MW AWARDS ... New Mexico first baseman D.J. Peterson and right-hander Gera Sanchez earned Mountain West Baseball Player and Pitcher of the Week honors for games played from March 5-11, 2012. It is the second-career honor for both players. Peterson hit .562 (9- for-16) as the Lobos went 3-1 on the week, including a three-game sweep of Gonzaga. Peterson hit safely in all four games, starting the week with a 3-for-4, five RBI, two-run performance in a 16-12 loss at New Mexico State.

Sanchez, a senior from Las Cruces, N.M., earned two wins in three relief appearances for the Lobos last week. Sanchez threw one and a third innings against NMSU on Tuesday, striking out every batter he faced. His first win of the week was on Friday against Gonzaga, pitching three innings without giving up a run. He only allowed one hit, one walk and struck out five batters on a season-high 53 pitches. For the week, Sanchez had 10 strikeouts, one walk, one hit allowed and no runs allowed in five and a third innings of work. The Lobos have now had three players earn Player of the Week honors already in 2012 compared to four all year last season.

PETERSON HEATING UP ... In four games last week D.J. Peterson and the New Mexico Lobos went 3-1 including a three-game sweep of 22nd ranked and previously undefeated Gonzaga Bulldogs. Peterson went 10 for 16 (.625 average) with two doubles, a HR, seven singles, five runs, six RBI’s, .632 OBP, and an astounding .875 slugging percentage. Peterson played a crucial role in the sweep for the Lobos. Against New Mexico State alone, Peterson had 5 RBI’s in that one game. He is currently hitting .400 and he leads the Lobos in batting average, hits, slugging %, RBI, HR’s and total bases. Peterson earned three weekly awards for his efforts: College Baseball 360 Prime Time Performer, MW Player of the Week and College Sports Madness MW Player of the Week.

MELENDEZ THINKS IN THREES ... Josh Melendez already has four triples in 15 games this season. No UNM player had more than three triples last year.

WOODY’S STREAK ENDS ... Senior Ben Woodchick’s streak of reaching base came to an end March 10 against Gonzaga. Woodchick had reached base in 31 consecutive games, dating to last season, before he failed to reach base against the Bulldogs.

IN THE MW STATS ... Entering last week, DJ Peterson ranked third in the Mountain West in batting average first in hits, first in homers and first in slugging. Josh Melendez was ranked fourth in batting average, third in slugging, second in on-base percentage, first in stolen bases and first in runs scored. Both players are one and two in total bases.

RUNNING WILD ... The Lobos have totaled 23 stolen bases in 15 games this year compared to 29 stolen bases in 61 games in 2011. Newcomer Josh Melendez leads the way with seven, which would have lead the team last year. He is stealing at an impressive clip as well, converting on seven of eight attempts.

IF YOU BUILD IT THEY WILL COME ... The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association released its weekly attendance report of the season and the New Mexico Lobos have come in at No. 37 after hosting their second home weekend series against Oklahoma.

THERE’S A FIRST FOR EVERYTHING ... 12 Lobos got their first taste of D-1 baseball in the season opening series against Nevada Feb. 17-19.

PLAYING THE CREAM OF THE CROP ... Once again coach Ray Birmingham has challenged his team with a very tough schedule. UNM will face the likes of 2011 NCAA tournament participants Oklahoma and Arizona State. The Lobos will host both schools this year, however, because UNM traveled to Norman, Okla., and Tempe, Ariz., last season. The Lobos also have two series against conference powerhouse TCU, as well as a home series against a very formidable Florida Gulf Coast squad. Gonzaga is no picnic either, as the Bulldogs will come to Albuquerque this year as well.