Rebels Cue Up The Long Ball In Albuquerque
May 4, 2012
ALBUQUERQUE (UNLVRebels.com) - The UNLV Rebels (20-24, 1-6 Mountain West) notched a come-from-behind 8-4 win over the New Mexico Lobos (26-21, 1-6 MW) Friday night from the Lobo Softball Field in Albuquerque. UNM jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead before UNLV countered with eight-unanswered runs assisted by three home runs the remainder of the contest.
The victory was the second straight for UNLV over UNM and the 15th win for the Rebels in 16 tries.
UNLV's offense got going early on, but was unable to plate any of the five runners that reached base safely through the first three innings of action. Four of those five were stranded in scoring position, two of which were on third base.
UNM, on the other hand, capitalized on its opportunities in the first and third innings with RBI hits from three different players - Jessica Lujan-Dresslar, Jessica Garcia and Danielle Castro - although the offense still left a trio of runners behind.
The Rebels turned things around in the fourth when UNM's Carrie Sheehan lost control of her pitches and hit two batters and walked another to load up the bases. With the bags juiced, Stefany Valentino uncorked a two-out grand slam deep into the right-field bleachers. Tayler Van Acker, Katie Uriarte and Paige Emerson all scored on Valentino's bases-clearing hit.
UNLV scored twice in both the sixth and seventh innings to plate four more runs. In the sixth, Elena Fata and Emerson started the offensive with a single and a double, respectively, which ended Sheehan's stint in the circle. Tayler Aleman followed one batter later and hit a fielder's choice off Kaela DeBroeck to short that scored Fata from third. Emerson came around from second when Chelsea Anaya's throw home, in an attempt to get Fata out, sailed high past her catcher.
Van Acker and Kylie Wagner stepped up in the seventh and sent two balls flying out of the stadium with back-to-back home runs. Van Acker's shot went to right field, while Wagner's was an opposite-field shot to left.
UNM got one run back in the bottom of the seventh when Stefanie Carramusa hit a solo homer to right.
The Rebels got 10 hits from eight different players. Emerson and Valentino led the way with two hits apiece, while the former and Van Acker both scored twice.
Amanda Oliveto(13-15) picked up the win in complete-game fashion after giving up four runs off of 10 hits. Oliveto struck out five against two walks.
Sheehan (8-7) was saddled with the loss in five innings of work. She was touched for six runs (five earned) off of six hits. She walked four and struck out one.
DeBroeck pitched two frames of relief, and she surrendered two runs off of four hits.
Notes: UNLV improved to 10-1 on the year when it has scored between six and nine runs in a game ... Oliveto became the seventh Rebel hurler in program history to notch 300 career strikeouts ... Van Acker was hit by two pitches and moved into a first-place tie with Brittany Meade (2007) for most hit-by-pitches in a single season with 10 apiece ... Van Acker also moved into a seventh-place tie with current teammate Jaexie Balilea for most hit-by-pitches in a career with 13 apiece.
The two teams meet again on Saturday with first pitch scheduled for 5:00 pm Mt (4:00 pm PT).