LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Keaton Wright and Devin Caldwell combined for eight hits, six RBIs and two home runs Saturday but it wasn't enough to withstand New Mexico State's offensive output, as the Aggies swept a baseball doubleheader from SIUE 16-12 and 12-2.
"The story today was we had too many guys pitching from behind," SIUE Head Coach Tony Stoecklin said. "We pitched from behind and pitched afraid."
SIUE falls to 1-5 after the pair of losses. New Mexico State improved to 5-2. The two teams will play the finale of the four game set
The Cougars scored 12 runs on 15 hits in the opener, but it wasn't enough, as NMSU earned the 16-12 win.
After getting down 6-0 after two innings, the Cougars fought back. SIUE scored three runs in the third inning, two runs in the fourth, and five more runs in the fifth to take a 10-6 lead into the bottom of the fifth.
The Aggies scored four runs each in the bottom of the fifth and sixth innings and then added two runs in the home half of the seventh to move ahead 14-10. The Cougars added a pair of runs in the eighth inning for the final margin.
Wright paced the Cougar attack, going 3 for 5 with a home run, two RBIs, and three runs. Chase Green was 2 for 4 with three RBIs and a run. Caldwell was 2 for 5 with a home run, the 24th of his career, two RBIs, and a run. Caldwell's 24 home runs are tied for fourth on SIUE's career home run list.
"Those two guys did a good job on offense," Stoecklin said of Wright and Caldwell. "They took good at-bats all day."
Brian Sipe was 2 for 3 with an RBI. Jory Goldstrom and Ryan Wagner each had two hits and two RBIs.
Kristoffer Koerper led the Aggies at the plate. He was 3 for 4 with a home run, three RBIs, and two runs scored.
Neither starter figured into the game one decision. SIUE starter Jake Stauffenberg allowed eight runs, six earned, in 4 1/3 innings. He struck out six and did not walk a batter. NMSU starter Kyle Kilgore also allowed eight runs, seven earned, in four innings. He struck out three and walked three.
Cougar reliever Sam Hopkins (0-1) gave up eight runs, five earned, on four hits and five walks in just 1 2/3 innings to take the loss.
"We fought back early," Stoecklin added. "We just gave up too many runs late and couldn't overcome."
Riley Barr (2-1) earned the win for NMSU. He gave up two runs on five hits in 1 1/3 innings out of the bullpen.
NMSU all 12 of its runs over the first three innings in game two. The Cougars scored single runs in the fifth and the seventh innings. Jarrett Bednar allowed 10 runs in just two innings to fall to 0-2 for the season.
Caldwell was 1 for 2 with both of SIUE's RBIs in game two. He drove in a run with a sacrifice fly in the fifth and added an RBI-triple in the seventh. Wright was 2 of 3 in the nightcap.
Koerper was 3 for 4 with a home run, three RBIs, and three runs for NMSU. Michael Paulson was 2 for 4 with two RBIs and two runs scored.
Robert Kraft (1-0) earned the win in game two. He allowed a run on five hits, struck out two, but walked four.