Mang brothers lead UNM offense

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By Phil Scherer

Since returning from a hand injury in mid-March, former Los Alamos High School baseball player Jared Mang has been an offensive force for the University of New Mexico, leading the Lobos through a difficult Mountain West conference schedule. 

Mang, who is considered a future MLB draft prospect, has played in 10 games since coming back from his injury, hitting four home runs and putting together a .314 average. 

The Lobos have been inconsistent throughout the season in large part due to a pitching staff that does not have a starter with an earned run average under 5.34. 

Because of the up-and-down pitching, the offense is being counted on to step up and perform, a role Mang has embraced. 

In the 10 games since his return, the Lobos are 6-4, including wins over Mountain West rivals Air Force and San Diego State. 

Mang is also hitting for power with consistency. He has hit home runs two games in a row, and has driven in at least one run in three straight games. 

He currently leads the Lobos with four home runs, despite missing 12 games during the early part of the season. 

Last year, Mang was the top hitter for the Lobos, collecting 90 hits and a .373 average. 

He also hit nine home runs and drove in 62 RBI’s, earning All-Mountain West first team honors. 

Also putting together a great offensive season is Jared’s brother Connor, who is hitting over .300 in his first year with the Lobos. 

After sitting out last year, Connor Mang is hitting .304 this season and has started 21 games this year. 

After a bit of a slow start, Connor Mang put together a seven-game hitting streak that came to an end Monday afternoon in a non-conference game against the University of Arizona. 

Though he has only two extra-base hits this season, he has driven in 12 runs while playing great infield defense for the Lobos. He has committed only one error this season while recording 77 putouts and a .991 fielding percentage. 

The Mang brothers will try to continue their hot streaks offensively as the Lobos play four games in Albuquerque over the next week. The team will take on Mountain west rival Fresno State Friday at 6:30 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m. and Sunday at noon. 

Then, in-state rival New Mexico State will come to Albuquerque Tuesday for a 6:30 p.m. game.