Explosive Eighth Inning Leads New Mexico State Over Harvard, 11-5

Explosive Eighth Inning Leads New Mexico State Over Harvard, 11-5

LAS CRUCES, N.M. – The Harvard baseball team (1-4) would erase a 5-1 deficit in the eighth before New Mexico State (6-3) responded with a six-run back end to win game one of four on Friday night in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Jake Allen led the Crimson with 2 RBI while Ben Skinner drove in the game-tying run for Harvard.

At the plate, Buddy Hayward connected on three of five at bats, just ahead of Ben Skinner who went two-for-five. Skinner and Matt Rothenberg both posted doubles in the nine-inning affair, as well as a stolen base apiece.

On the pitching mound, four Crimson players made an appearance, led by Noah Zavolas who threw the first five innings, striking out six batters. Grant Stone and Jack Mahala each took the mound for an inning, Mahala striking out one, before freshman Buddy Hayward closed out the final two innings.

Harvard 5, New Mexico State 11 (9 Innings)
Harvard looked sharp in the first, despite not scoring. After Skinner and Rothenberg took first and second, the duo pulled a double steal to get within scoring distance. 

In the bottom of the second, Patrick McColl and Noah Zavolas tag-teamed for the first out of the inning before Chad Minato, Matt Rothenberg and McColl combined for a double-play to end the second. 

At the end of the third, Jake Suddleson made a diving catch to strand two Aggies on base.

Harvard put itself on the board in the sixth courtesy of Patrick McColl. McColl first sprinted from first to third on a Buddy Hayward single, and then was able to score shortly after on a wild pitch from Kyle Braddish. 

Buddy Hayward doubled the Crimson's runs on another wild pitch in the top of the eighth. Later on, with the bases loaded, Jake Allen put Harvard within one on 2 RBI with a single to left field. Immediately after, Ben Skinner bee-lined the ball up the right field line, driving in Devan Peterson to tie the game at 5. 

The Aggies went up by two in the bottom of the eighth on a single from Mason Fishback. New Mexico State then sealed the game with a grand slam from Trey Stine to put the Aggies up 11-5. 

What's Next?
Harvard will return to the field tomorrow, Saturday, March 3 for a doubleheader against the Aggies. First pitch of the twin bill is scheduled for 2 p.m. EST.