Early Hole Dooms Broncos At New Mexico
May 2, 2015

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A six-run second inning put New Mexico ahead to stay Saturday and proved to be too much for Boise State to overcome in a 7-5 loss at Lobo Softball Field.

The decision clinches the series for New Mexico (27-23, 11-9 MW), while the Broncos (12-38, 4-16 MW) will attempt to avert a fifth-straight sweep on the road in Mountain West play Sunday as the teams play the finale at noon.

Saturday's contest featured a one-hour, 17-minute lightning delay during the top of the fifth inning with New Mexico ahead 7-2. Play was stopped one pitch into Lindsey Nicholson's at-bat immediately following a two-run home run from Devon Bridges, who went 2-for-4 on the day.

Earlier, the Broncos took a 2-1 lead in the top of the second behind two-out, RBI doubles from Sara Ketelsleger and Hailey Torrez, a rally begun with a single from Izzy Serrano, who had a career-high three hits for Boise State.

But the bottom half of the frame would give New Mexico the lead it would not relinquish, as the Lobos sent 12 batters to the plate and scored six runs to take a 7-2 lead. Lisa Rodrigues walked to open the inning followed by singles from Katie Gallucci and Michala Erickson, as Rodrigues scored on the latter.

That start to the inning spelled the end of the day for Bronco starter Rachel Rodriguez, who took her 20th loss of the season, going one-plus and giving up four runs on four hits.

Nicole Wilson came into the circle and gave up three-straight singles to Brandi Heimburg, Shelbie Franc and Mariah Rimmer, with the latter two driving in runs to make it 4-2 Lobos. Wilson would then hit Chelsea Johnson with a pitch followed by a sacrifice fly from Karissa Haleman, plating two more for the Lobos. Mia Hignojos then reached on a fielding error by Wilson, allowing Rimmer to score the final run of the inning.

The Lobos went on to load the bases with one out after a walk to Rodrigues, but Wilson got a fielder's choice from Gallucci, with Johnson being forced out at home, and a fly ball from Erickson to end the frame.

Heimburg went 3-for-4 to pace the Lobos, while Rimmer was 2-for-3 with two RBI and Franc went 2-for-3 with an RBI triple in the first.

The Broncos would close the gap in the fifth as Bridges hit her ninth homer of the season, scoring Makenzie Sullivan as well to make it 7-4. One pitch later to Nicholson and the umpires called the teams off the field due to lightning, beginning the hour-plus delay.

The teams returned after the stoppage and went scoreless until the top of the seventh. Singles from Jordan Kreiger and Bridges put two on with one out before Lindsey Nicholson grounded into a fielder's choice, leaving runners at the corners for Izzy Serrano. Serrano roped her third hit of the game, a double to the base of the wall in right, scoring pinch-runner Ariel Frantz and leaving runners on second and third. But Ketelsleger would fly out to left to end the game.

Lauren Soles improved to 9-5 with the complete-game win for New Mexico.

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