• Isotopes rally from 3 runs down
    The Albuquerque Isotopes rallied for four unanswered runs to top the Round Rock Express Monday. The Isotopes and the Express are in a battle for first place in the Pacific Coast League’s American Southern standings. The Express (45-34), who won the first two games of the series Saturday and Sunday, were two games up on the Isotopes heading into today’s play. Albuquerque trailed 9-6 after 6-1/2 innings, but got three runs in the bottom of the seventh to tie it up and scored a run in the bottom of the ninth to pick up the walk-off 10-9 victory. It was a wacky bottom of the ninth, featuring two walks, two hit batsmen, a flubbed sacrifice attempt and an ejection of both Round Rock catcher Jose Felix and manager Bobby Jones. When the dust settled, John Baker drew a bases-loaded walk to force home Alex Castellanos for the winning run. The Isotopes only got one ball into the field of play the entire inning, that being Castellanos’ sacrifice attempt on which leadoff hitter Matt Angle was thrown out at second. Nevertheless, the Isotopes (43-36) picked up their first win of the four-game set. The series finale, and the finale of the short homestand for the Isotopes, was this afternoon.
  • Kirk named to All-Academic team
    Former Los Alamos basketball star and current University of New Mexico Lobo men’s basketball player Alex Kirk was named to the 2012-13 Mountain West All-Academic team. Kirk, along with teammates Hugh Greenwood and Cameron Bairstow were honored by the Mountain West last week. They were three of UNM’s conference-high 111 student-athletes named to the list for the spring 2013 semester. Greenwood, Bairstow and Kirk combined to start in 87 games for the Lobos during the 2012-13 season, which saw UNM go 29-6 and earn the Mountain West’s regular season and conference tournament titles. Unfortunately, UNM, the No. 3 seed in the NCAA championship tournament, suffered a stunning upset at the hands of Harvard University in the fist round. Kirk, for his part, was third in scoring for UNM last year. He averaged 12.1 points and was also the team’s leading rebounder, pulling down 8.1 boards per game. Bairstow was fourth on the team in scoring (9.7 points per game) and Greenwood was fifth (7.0 points per game). Greenwood also had a team best 47 steals last year. In all, UNM had 163 student-athletes make the All-Academic squad combined throughout the school year.
  • Agencies help animals during drought
    nd a nonprofit organization are teaming up to help provide water to New Mexico’s wildlife populations during the drought. New Mexico Department of Game and Fish has made a one-time provision of $40,000 to New Mexico Department of Agriculture to help the state’s ranchers defray the extra cost of hauling or pumping water during the drought. Game and Fish director Jim Lane and agricultural director/secretary Jeff Witte made the announcement during the mid-year meeting of the New Mexico Joint Stockmen, which is comprised largely of ranchers, earlier this month. “Anytime a rancher provides water for his cattle, there will be wildlife that benefit from that water, also,” Lane said. “We recognize the contributions landowners make that go a long way toward keeping our wildlife healthy, especially during the drought, and this money is to say thank you for that.” Game and Fish is primarily funded by the sale of licenses to hunt, fish and trap game species in the state, not by general taxpayer dollars.
  • Isotopes pick up 6-4 road win over Omaha
    The Albuquerque Isotopes came through in the eighth inning, avenging a late-inning loss the night before at Omaha. Albuquerque’s John Baker run-scoring single during the top of the eighth helped the Isotopes rally for a 6-4 victory Thursday. The Isotopes (42-33), who have now won 9 of their last 11 contests, finish their road series tonight before returning to Albuquerque for a four-game set starting Saturday. Albuquerque led 4-1 early in the contest, but Omaha’s Adam Moore hit a towering 3-run home run in the fifth to tie it. In the eighth, Baker lined a single through a drawn-in infield to push home a run and Matt Wallach drew a walk with the bases loaded to force home another run, giving Albuquerque the win. Omaha didn’t go down without a fight, however, getting two straight hits to start the ninth while Xavier Nady hit a hard line drive to first base that was speared by Rusty Ryal, who then doubled-up the Omaha runner on first. The Isotopes’ upcoming four-game home series includes postgame fireworks Saturday night and a visit from popular traveling mascot Myron Noodleman Sunday night.
  • Isotopes' winning streak snapped
    A sixth-inning home run by the Omaha Storm Chasers’ Brett Hayes helped to snap the Albuquerque Isotopes’ seven-game win streak Wednesday night. The Storm Chasers prevailed in the nightcap of a doubleheader Wednesday in Omaha. Hayes’ two-run home run was all the offense the Storm Chasers would muster in that game, but it would be enough to top the Isotopes 2-1. The Isotopes didn’t have any trouble putting runs on the board in the first game, however, picking up an 11-3 victory to add to the team’s season-best winning streak. The Isotopes (41-33) scored nine times in the third inning to put that game away early. Rusty Ryal went 4-for-7 in the two games, knocking in three runs and scoring three runs, while Tony Gwynn Jr. also finished 4-for-7 and scored twice. Brian Barden had one hit in each game for Albuquerque, extending his hitting streak to 15 consecutive games. In game one, Omaha went up 2-0 after two innings off Albuquerque starter Matt Magill, but Albuquerque answered by sending 13 batters to the plate in the top of the third. Nick Buss and Matt Angle both doubled in runs in the inning and Ryal and Gwynn both had RBI singles. Geison Aguasviva (4-3) pitched 3-2/3 innings of relief to earn the win.
  • Isotopes sweep the Redbirds in four-game home series
    The Albuquerque Isotopes scored three early runs to down the Memphis Redbirds 4-3 to close out their series at Isotopes Park. The top three hitters in Albuquerque’s batting order, Dee Gordon, Elian Herrera and Tony Gwynn Jr. combined for half the team’s hit total and three of the four runs Monday. With Monday’s win, Albuquerque takes the home series sweep over Memphis. It was the fifth win in a row for the Isotopes (39-32). The five-game win streak is the longest of the season for Albuquerque, which has won six of its last seven contests. Albuquerque has now moved into second place in the PCL American Southern standings and is just a half-game back of division-leading Round Rock. Albuquerque scored twice in the first inning and pushed another run across in the second to go up 3-0 early. Memphis (35-37) came back with a pair of runs in the top of the third, but wouldn’t score again until the seventh. In the first inning, the Isotopes scored their two runs on two singles, three walks, a throwing error on a pickoff attempt and a wild pitch.
  • Leftover licenses going on sale
    SANTA FE – More than 2,500 deer hunting licenses and almost 900 javelina licenses that were not allocated during the annual drawing for 2013-14 big-game hunting licenses will go on sale at 10 a.m. June 26 on the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish website. New Mexico residents will get first shot at the licenses during the first-come, first-served sale. License sales will be open to residents only for the first 24 hours. The sale will be opened to everyone, regardless of residency, at 10 a.m. June 27. To be eligible to buy a leftover license, hunters must have either previously purchased a game hunting or game hunting and fishing license. Those licenses, along with Habitat Improvement Stamps and Habitat Management Access Validations, also can be obtained through online accounts. Game and fish strongly encourages interested hunters to obtain or review online customer accounts, including their Customer Identification number, user name and password, and to be signed on to their account before the sale begins. Popular licenses often sell out very quickly. Leftover licenses will be sold online only. Licenses and stamps can be printed from any computer by signing on to an account and selecting “My purchases.”
  • Hurd to lead the new-look WAC
    DENVER – Western Athletic Conference officials announced Friday that Jeff Hurd has been hired full-time as the conference’s commissioner.  The appointment came following the conclusion of the summer meeting of the 2013-14 Board of Directors. Hurd had served as the league’s interim commissioner since March 2012. Hurd, who becomes the sixth commissioner in the WAC’s 51-year history, joined the WAC staff in August 1985 and has served in various capacities during his tenure. He was the conference’s senior associate commissioner prior to being named to replace former commissioner Karl Benson on an interim basis. New Mexico State University competes in the WAC, which will have an entirely different look this fall, as six new member schools will join. NMSU’s Aggies, along with Seattle University and Idaho will be the only members of the WAC returning, along with newcomers Cal-State Bakersfield, Missouri-Kansas City, Grand Canyon University, Chicago State, Texas Pan-Am and Utah Valley.  
  • Teams will play a ‘friendly’
    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — Major League Soccer’s Colorado Rapids and Mexican first division club Santos Laguna have scheduled a game in Albuquerque. The Rapids announced Friday that the two clubs will play an international friendly at University Stadium on July 12. The move is part of efforts by MLS and La Liga MX to expand to new markets. Interest in soccer has grown in Albuquerque, partly because of the success of the New Mexico’s men’s soccer team. The city also is home to a sizeable Mexican immigrant population. Colorado won the MLS Cup for the first time in 2010. Club Santos Laguna is one of the most popular soccer teams in Mexico.
  • Isotopes win in extras Thursday
    Tony Gwynn Jr. came through with a two-run double in the 11th inning and Jeremy Moore’s two-run homer later in the inning boosted the Albuquerque Isotopes to a win Thursday. Albuquerque earned a split on the road in its four-game series against Round Rock, scoring five runs in the 11th to win 9-4. Albuquerque returns to Isotopes Park for a four-game series against Memphis starting tonight. Thursday’s game was about as even as it could be through 10 innings, with both teams recording 4 runs, 7 hits, 2 errors and had left 9 runners on base. The big hits in the 11th by Gwynn and Moore were the only hits the two had Thursday. They had gone a combined 0-for-9 prior to that. The Isotopes (35-32), who have now alternated wins and losses for 13 games, used six pitchers against Round Rock (37-31). Steve Ames (2-2), who threw the bottom of the 10th, earned the victory.