Feb. 11, 2012
Site: Tempe, Ariz. (Tempe Sports Complex Southwest Field)
Score: New Mexico 13, Northwestern 5 (5)
Records: NU (1-3), New Mexico (4-0)
Next NU Event: Feb. 12, 2012 -- vs. No. 17 Texas A&M (Farrington Stadium), 9:30 a.m. CT (8:30 a.m. local)
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Northwestern ran into an offensive force Saturday night at the Kajikawa Classic, falling to a powerful undefeated New Mexico squad, 13-5 (5).
The Lobos now are 4-0 on the season while the Wildcats are 1-3 after their loss.
New Mexico began the game's scoring in the bottom of the first, sending a leadoff home run over the fence for a 1-0 lead. The next two batters also reached before Northwestern starter Meghan Lamberth (Wildwood, Mo./Lafayette) settled in and retired the side with just the one run of damage.
The Lobos again put together a rally in the bottom of the second, getting runners to first and second with no outs. With the same alignment one out later, the batter hit a hard grounder to Marisa Bast (Orange, Calif./Villa Park) at third. Bast stepped on the bag, then tossed a Rookie of the Year type laser beam across the diamond to Adrienne Monka (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif./Rancho Cucamonga) at first to complete the inning-ending double play.
Northwestern found its voice in the batter's box in the top of the third. Both Mari Majam
(Pine Valley, Calif./Mountain Empire) and Kristin Scharkey
(Yorba Linda, Calif./Esperanza) walked to lead off the inning, then Allard smashed a double that bounced over the fence to limit all the speedy Wildcats on base to just two bags. Still, Majam crossed home to tie the score, 1-1.
Speed quickly disappeared as an issue with Monka at the plate. The senior launched her second home run of the season and the 43rd of her career to clear the bases and give Northwestern a 4-1 lead. The inning continued to with a walk to Bast, who was erased on a fielder's choice ball from Amy Letourneau (Laguna Niguel, Calif./Santa Margarita Catholic). Olivia Duehr (Antioch, Ill./Antioch) then drove Letourneau in all the way from first with a double to deep right center, giving the Wildcats a 5-1 cushion.
The Lobos fought right back, hitting a leadoff home run on the very first pitch of the bottom half of the third. A grand slam would follow later in the inning to put New Mexico back on top, 6-5, leading to Sammy Albanese (Belmont, Calif./Castilleja) entering the circle in relief. By the time NU was able to get out of the inning, the Lobos had scored eight runs (four of them unearned) to take a 9-5 lead.
Northwestern mounted a two-out rally in the top of the fourth when Allard and Anna Edwards (La Canada, Calif./La Canada) both reached on infield singles. Monka then worked a full-count walk, but Bast's hard ground ball went directly to the shortstop who gloved it and ended the inning.
Albanese came out in the bottom of the fourth and held the Lobos at bay quite well, retiring the side in order. Northwestern got a leadoff Letourneau walk in the fifth but could not capitalize on the scoreless Lobo frame.
An error and a home run added two more Lobo runs in the top of the fifth, leading Albanese to yield the circle to sophomore Jenny Tyler (Glendale, Ariz./Deer Valley). Tyler got a pair of outs, but the Lobos eventually pushed across enough runs to end the game early, 13-5 (5).
Lamberth (0-2) went 2.0 innings, surrendering six runs (five earned) on seven hits and two walks to take the loss. Albanese went 2.0 innings, giving up five runs (one earned) on two hits and four walks with one strikeout. Tyler allowed two unearned runs on two walks and a hit in 0.2 innings of work.
At the plate, Allard finished 3-for-3 with two steals and Monka drove in three to pace NU.
Northwestern returns to action at 9:30 a.m. CT (8:30 a.m. local) tomorrow, Sunday, Feb. 12 against No. 17 Texas A&M on getaway day at the Kajikawa Classic.
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