Former Rocky Mountain High School star Tyler Stevens was dominant on the mound for New Mexico on Saturday, but the Lobos couldn’t survive a late surge from Texas Tech, falling 4-3 in the NCAA tournament in Lubbock, Texas.
Stevens threw a season-high 132 pitches, striking out seven batters and allowed one earned run on three hits. But after Stevens, a sophomore, exited following 7 ⅓ innings and a 3-1 lead, New Mexico’s bullpen faltered. Texas Tech, the No. 5 overall seed in the NCAA tournament, had a two-out rally to tie the game at 3-3, giving Stevens a no decision.
In the top of the ninth inning, Texas Tech hit a solo home run to avoid the upset.
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Carl Stajduhar, the Mountain West Player of the Year and a fellow graduate of Rocky Mountain High School, continued his struggles at the plate. He went 0 for 5 and struck out three times. He’s yet to record a hit in the regional.
New Mexico will play an elimination game Sunday against Dallas Baptist at 1 p.m. The winner will advance to play Texas Tech at 5 p.m. Should the Lobos or DBU beat the Red Raiders, they’ll play Texas Tech again on Monday with the winner advancing to the Super Regional.
For insight and analysis on athletics around Northern Colorado and the Mountain West, follow sports coach and columnist Matt L. Stephens at twitter.com/mattstephens and facebook.com/stephensreporting.