Lobo baseball earns wild win over nationally ranked Texas Tech - Albuquerque Journal

Lobo baseball earns wild win over nationally ranked Texas Tech

Who says lightning doesn’t strike in the same place twice?

Jake Holland blasted a walk-off solo home run off light pole beyond the left-field fence in the bottom of the ninth inning Tuesday and the University of New Mexico baseball team pulled out a wildly entertaining 11-10 victory over 20th-ranked Texas Tech at Santa Ana Star Field.

The Lobos trailed 4-0 early, were down 10-8 in the seventh inning, scratched out a pair of runs to get even and celebrated after Holland’s winning shot.

“Amazing,” Holland said after being doused with ice water and having his jersey ripped off by teammates at home plate. “Best hit of my baseball life so far.”

Holland, a catcher and junior college transfer, was not around last season when the Lobos hosted Texas Tech on April 19. Otherwise he might have recognized the strange similarity between that game and Tuesday’s contest.

UNM’s Jeffrey David belted a three-run walkoff homer to give the home team an 11-10 victory in 2022.

“It was the same exact scenario, same score,” Lobos coach Tod Brown said. “Go figure.”

UNM’s Lenny Junior Ashby slides into home plate during Tuesday’s win over Texas Tech at Santa Ana Star Field. (Jon Austria/Journal)

New Mexico (15-8) picked up its third straight win Tuesday a back-and-forth game that featured 29 combined hits and 10 pitchers employed (six by Texas Tech). Hitters had things their way for much of the afternoon, particularly Red Raiders third baseman Kevin Bazzell (5-for-5 with three doubles and four RBIs) and UNM’s David (3-for-5 with two RBIs).

But Lobos pitchers chipped in when it counted. Relievers Justin Still and Brian McBroom posted 1-2-3 innings in the eighth and ninth — the only times Texas Tech went down in order in the game. McBroom (1-0) got the pitching win but credited Holland’s work both at the plate and behind it.

“I was a little amped up coming into a 10-10 game,” McBroom said. “Jake did a great job helping me settle in. When I saw he was coming up in the bottom of the ninth I thought, ‘I might not have to go back out there. Jake might end this.'”

The day ended better than it started for the Lobos, who trailed 4-0 before they came to bat. Texas Tech (18-8) put up four runs in the first inning, collecting two singles, two doubles and a two-run Owen Washburn homer off UNM starter Jaren Jackson.

UNM answered with five runs in the bottom of the first thanks to five singles, a walk and Deylan Pigford’s third homer of the season.

“The way it started, it looked like this might be a 31-30 game,” Brown said. “Balls were jumping today. Fortunately Jaren Jackson settled down and gave us a chance to get back in it.”

The Lobos led 8-5 after three innings, but Texas Tech scored the next five runs and took a 10-8 lead on Bazzell’s two-run single in the seventh. UNM got even in the bottom half on Chase Weissenborn’s two-out RBI single and a wild pitch.

Holland came to the plate with one out and bases empty in the ninth just looking to make solid contact. He had struck out in each of his previous three times at bat.

“I wasn’t really looking for anything but they’d thrown me a lot of sliders all day,” Holland said. “Fortunately I got the barrel to that one.”

UNM evened the season series with Texas Tech after dropping a 6-3 decision March 7 in Lubbock. The Lobos host San Diego State for a three-game series beginning Friday at 6 p.m.


Texas Tech 410 110 300 —10 15 1

New Mexico 512 000 201—11 14 1

Pitching: TT, Zane Petty, Garrett Crowley (2), Jase Lopez (4), Derek Bridges (7), Ethan Coombes (7), Ryan Free (7) and Hudson White. NM, Jaren Jackson, Ben Baker-Livingston (5), Justin Still (7), Brian McBroom (9) and Jake Holland. Win: McBroom (1-0). Loss: Free (2-3). Leading hitters: TT, Kevin Bazzell (5-5, 3 2B, 4 RBI); Austin Green (3-5, 2B, RBI); Own Washburn (2-4, HR, 2RBI); NM, Jeffrey David (3-5, 2 RBI), Deylan Pigford (2-5, HR, RBI); Holland (2-5, HR, 2 RBI).

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