• McBride leads ’Topes to victory
    First-baseman Matt McBride went 4-for-5 and came up just a triple shy of the cycle as the Albuquerque Isotopes (27-35) beat the Tacoma Rainiers (29-33) 3-2 in a 11 innings Friday night. It was the second-straight extra-inning game for the Isotopes. Angelys Nina legged out an infield single to leadoff the 11th inning. Dustin Garneau then sacrificed him to second before Tim Smalling smashed a one-out RBI double to left field, giving the Isotopes the 3-2 lead and eventual win. Albuquerque scored single runs in the second and fourth, but a Tacoma seventh inning two-out, two-RBI single tied the game up. McBride hit a double and a homer in the win.
  • Lobos make it three-for-three
    New Mexico senior Peter Callahan earned All-American status in the men’s 1,500-meter run Friday to give the Lobo track and field team three such honors through three days of the 2015 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships. After Logan Pflibsen (pole vault) and Alice Wright (10,000), Callahan captured the Lobos’ third All-American honor of the championships via his fourth-place time of 3 minutes, 55.22 seconds in the 1,500. It’s the second-straight year the Evanston, Illinois product has placed fourth and earned All-American honors in the event. After opening the race in the lead, Callahan paced the pack of 13 finalists through the first three laps of the race. Dictating a relatively slow tempo over the course of the race, he remained the frontrunner until the final 200 meters, relinquishing his lead as all the runners began their final kicks on the homestraight. However, he seized a top-four finish for the second year a row, making his just the third New Mexico track athlete in program history to accomplish that. Callahan is also the ninth New Mexico athlete to capture back-to-back All-American honors in the same event.  
  • Walk-off homer beats ’Topes
    The Albuquerque Isotopes (26-35) scored a run in the top of the 10th and seemed to be on their way to their sixth win in eight games, but the Tacoma Rainiers’ (29-32) Jesus Montero blasted a one-out, two-run home run in the bottom of the 10th to pick up the walk-off victory for the Rainiers at Cheney Stadium. Albuquerque scored two runs in the first, and Tacoma answered with a pair in the third. Both teams then settled in for six straight scoreless innings to send the game to extras. Back-to-back doubles by Matt McBride and Angelys Nina in the top of the 10th plated a run and seemed to give the Isotopes all the support they would need for a win. The bottom of the 10th proved to be a different story though. After a one-out single, Montero blasted a 1-2 pitch over the left field wall for a Rainiers’ walk-off home run. Right-handed pitcher Jon Gray turned in yet another strong outing Thursday night. He lasted a season-longest eight innings, allowing just two runs on four hits. He also struck out four, while tossing 100 pitches. It is Gray’s fifth-straight quality start, and he’s allowed three earned runs or fewer in eight consecutive outings. His ERA since May 21 (five starts) is 1.83.  
  • Wright earns All-American honors
    New Mexico redshirt freshman Alice Wright raced to All-American status in the women’s 10,000-meter run Thursday as the Lobo track and field team wrapped up the second day of the 2015 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships. A day after Logan Pflibsen was All-American in the pole vault, Wright finished eighth with a time of 33 minutes, 41.86 seconds in the 10,000 at Hayward Field to secure her first-ever All-American honor in track. She is just the fourth Lobo woman in program history to earn All-American honors in the 10,000. “Alice was the only freshman in the field and she ran a great race in a great field,” New Mexico head coach Joe Franklin said. Wright, running in her first national championships outdoors, ran along with a relatively condensed lead pack for about the first 18 laps of the 25-lap race. As runners began to fall off the group, Wright remained in the lead pack of a dozen runners. The 2015 Mountain West champion in the event, Wright ran her last mile in 5:17 and made a furious charge over the bell lap to finish eighth out of the 24 athletes racing. “It was very warm during the 10K and to have the will to pass two women with 200 meters left to score and become All American shows her pride,” Franklin said.
  • Pflibsen vaults to All-American honors
    New Mexico senior Logan Pflibsen took All-American honors in the pole vault to headline the opening day of the 2015 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships for the Lobo track and field team. Pflibsen, competing in his final collegiate meet, tied for sixth to become just the third-ever UNM All-American in the pole vault. “An amazing progression for an amazing young person,” New Mexico head coach Joe Franklin said. “Logan worked hard for years and years and to come to the NCAA Championships and earn All-American status is testament to his work ethic and determination.” The Streator, Ill., native maneuvered the first three bars flawlessly en route to clearing a personal-record of 17 feet, 8 inches. Overall, he finished tied with Tennessee’s Jake Blankenship for sixth place out of the 24 entrants, claiming the top-eight finish needed for All-American honors. Also from the opening day of the four-day meet in Eugene, Peter Callahan zoomed into the finals of the men’s 1,500-meter run. Callahan, out of Evanston, Ill., weathered a particularly slow first heat in the semifinals of the 1,500 and finished fourth in the heat with a time of 3 minutes, 46.19 seconds.
  • Isotopes win series
    Runs were at a premium Tuesday afternoon at Smith’s Ballpark in Salt Lake City, Utah, as the Albuquerque Isotopes (26-34) shutout the Salt Lake Bees (26-33) 1-0 in the series finale of their four-game set. With the victory, the Isotopes took the series and have won five of their last seven games. The only run of Tuesday afternoon’s matinee came in the top half of the third. After a Brock Bond leadoff single, Tim Wheeler drew a one-out walk ahead of a Cristhian Adames single to load the bases. After a popup on the infield, Matt McBride legged out an infield single that allowed Bond to score. A strikeout would end the threat, but the one run proved to be enough. Jair Jurrjens, Boone Whiting, LaTroy Hawkins and Rex Brothers teamed up to shutout Salt Lake’s Bees. The 1-0 final was just the 10th nine-inning game in Smith’s Ballpark history with one combined run. The Bees are now 7-3 all-time in those games with Albuquerque winning the last two, including one May 22, 2014. It was the first Isotopes shutout since June 21, 2014 at Iowa. After an off day on Wednesday, the Isotopes continue the road trip with a four-game set against the Tacoma Rainiers beginning Thursday.
  • Isotopes split doubleheader with Salt Lake
    The Albuquerque Isotopes (25-34) hung on for an 8-7 victory against the Salt Lake Bees (26-32) in game two of Monday’s doubleheader at Smith’s Ballpark in Salt Lake City, Utah. The two teams split their twin bill after the Bees claimed game one 10-7. THE TURNING POINT, GAME ONE: Salt Lake put the first runs on the board with a pair in the second, but Albuquerque quickly responded with a four-spot in the third, highlighted by Tim Smalling’s two-RBI double. That lead wouldn’t last long though as the Bees put up five runs of their own in the home half of the third to steal the momentum. The Isotopes tried to climb back into the game, but three more Salt Lake runs in the fifth put the game out of reach. THE TURNING POINT, GAME TWO: With a 6-3 lead in the top of the seventh, the Isotopes tacked on two more runs when Angelys Nina tripled with one out, scoring Matt McBride and Drew Stubbs. Those two runs proved to be pivotal as the Bees scored four runs in the bottom of the seventh to cut it to a one-run game. Salt Lake scored their four runs off six walks and no hits in the seventh before right-hander Justin Miller shut the door for his third save of year, preserving Albuquerque’s 8-7 victory.
  • Adames paces Isotopes to 10-2 win
    The Albuquerque Isotopes (23-33) scored a combined nine runs in their final three at-bats to beat the Iowa Cubs (28-27) 10-2 in the series finale at Isotopes Park Friday night. Infielder Cristhian Adames went 3-for-5 as the two teams split their four-game series. THE TURNING POINT: After trading runs in the first inning, the Isotopes and Cubs settled in for four consecutive scoreless frames before Albuquerque broke through with two runs in the sixth. After Iowa answered in the seventh, Adames ignited the 'Topes offense with a one-out RBI double in the home half of the seventh. The Isotopes would go on to send 10 guys to the plate and score five runs in the inning off four hits and three walks. After adding two more runs in the eighth, Albuquerque shut the door in the ninth for its 10-2 victory. GRAY THE GREAT: Right-handed pitcher Jon Gray turned in yet another strong outing on Friday night, tossing 6.2 innings and scattering just two runs amongst 10 hits. He also struck out three batters, while issuing just one intentional walk. His 104 pitches thrown were a season-high, while his 69 strikes matched a season-best. Gray owns a 1.37 ERA (four earned runs in 26.1 innings) over his last four outings. During that stretch, he’s walked just seven batters, struck out 13 and allowed only two home runs.
  • Iowa scores early and often versus Isotopes
    The Iowa Cubs (28-25) scored early and often as they beat the Albuquerque Isotopes (22-33) 8-2 Thursday night at Isotopes Park. The Isotopes will try to split the four-game series with a win in the series finale Friday night at 7:05 p.m. THE TURNING POINT: Iowa strung together three two-out hits in the first inning to plate a pair of runs, and the Cubs rolled from there. They added single runs in the second and third innings, followed by three combined runs in the fourth and fifth to take a 7-0 lead before Albuquerque could even get on the board. THE CULPRITBERSON: On a Major League rehab assignment from the Colorado Rockies, shortstop Charlie Culberson smashed a two-run home run off the videoboard to provide Albuquerque with its only runs of the night. In three games with the Isotopes, Culberson is now 3-for-13 with two runs scored, a double, a homer and an RBI. DOUBLE THE FUN: Entering Thursday’s game, the Isotopes had turned 19 double plays in their last seven games, nine of which were of the 6-4-3 variety. Albuquerque then turned two more on Thursday to expand their Pacific Coast League lead to 67 twin killings on the season.
  • Fish for free on Saturday
    Whether you feel like testing the waters for the first time or you are an old hand at fishing, Saturday is the perfect time to get out and make a cast or two at lakes and streams across New Mexico. All anglers, residents and nonresidents, may fish free on public waters statewide. On Saurday, no one needs a license or stamp, although bag limits and all other fishing rules apply. Fishing has been good on Abiquiu Lake lately using tubes, jerk baits and top water lures for smallmouth bass. Fishing was fair to good using crank baits, worms, tubes, bottom bouncer/night crawler rigs and spinner/night crawler rigs for walleye. Fishing was fair using Power Bait and spinners for rainbow trout. Night fishing was fair to good using liver, homemade dough bait and night crawlers for catfish. On Cochiti Lake, fishing has been fair to good trolling and casting crank baits for white bass. A few smallmouth bass were caught by anglers using jigs, tubes and jerk baits. Trout fishing downstream from Taos on the Rio Grande has been fair using poundmeisters, wooly buggers and night crawlers.