Pack Baseball pounces on NMHU early in 14-6 victory

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LAS VEGAS, N.M. Early inning dominance led Colorado State University-Pueblo Baseball to a 14-6 victory over New Mexico Highlands University Sunday at Brandt Field. The win clinched a 3-1 series win over NMHU.

Dakota Popham (Sr., Colorado Springs, Colo.) cracked four hits including a pair of doubles in five trips. Popham drove in three runs and scored three times. The Pack's third baseman had five doubles during the series.

Adrian Martinez (Jr., Tucson, Ariz.) bashed his first home run of the season. Martinez went 2-for-4 with two walks. He drove in three runs and scored twice. Martinez also stole a base.

The Pack's first two hitters, Gilbert Sauceda (Sr., Indio, Calif.) and Easton Adler (Jr., Mead, Colo.) each came through with two runs. Adler went 2-for-3 with two walks. Sauceda also drew a walk inching him within five of the RMAC record.

Aidan Welch (So., Seattle, Wash.) drove in two runs and scored twice. Welch walked and doubled in five trips. Stone Romero (Jr., Albuquerque, N.M.) and Jesse Holguin (Fr., Colton, Calif.) each went 1-for-4 with a RBI.

Popham kicked off the scoring in the first inning with a double that brought in Sauceda. Adler scored on a wild pitch and Popham came around on a Welch double. Welch touched home after another wild pitch to make it 4-0 after one.

The Pack scored seven runs in the second inning to make it 11-0. CSU-Pueblo sent 12 batters to the dish. Six of these batters reached on walks as the Pack built a double-digit lead.

In the third inning, the Pack continued to do damage. Popham led off the inning with Martinez slugged a two-run home run to make it 13-0.

The Cowboys scored three runs of their own in the third. That would be the only offense Gunner Pickett (Jr., Longmont, Colo.) would allow. Pickett lasted six innings, striking out five. The righty improved to 2-1 with the win.

After five scoreless innings, the Pack tacked on an insurance run in the ninth. Emilio Martinez (Jr., Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Logan Gibbons (Jr., Taylorsville, Utah) whacked back-to-back doubles to make it 14-3.

The Cowboys scored three runs in the bottom of the ninth, but their rally was unsuccessful as the Pack captured a 14-6 win. The ThunderWolves improved to 23-22 on the season. They stand 18-14 in Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference play.

After a 6-2 road trip, CSU-Pueblo will return home for its final series of the regular season against University of Colorado Colorado Springs. The Pack and Mountain Lions will begin their series Thursday at 6 p.m. at Rawlings Field.

Friday the Pack and Mountain Lions will clash in the 15th annual Pack the Park game at 7:05 p.m. at Runyon Field in downtown Pueblo. Admission is free and fabulous prizes will be given away every half inning during the Pack the Park game.