March 21, 2013
LAS CRUCES, New Mexico - Louisiana Tech opens Western Athletic Conference play this weekend as the Lady Techsters travel to face New Mexico State in a three-game series starting Friday at 7 p.m. CT.
Although New Mexico State (16-12) leads the all-time series 15-13, the Lady Techsters (12-13) swept last year's three-game series in Ruston, winning by scores of 6-2, 4-0 and 5-1. The Aggies lead 12-4 in games played in Las Cruces.
Louisiana Tech is coming off a 2-0 loss to Stephen F. Austin on Wednesday night and looks to snap a three-game losing streak heading into this weekend.
"I think the girls will be ready," said Tech head coach Mark Montgomery. "We talked (after our loss Wednesday) about does our record right now mean anything? Does it really only matter how we do in the WAC. It really only matters what we do from now moving forward. We will let go of the past and get ready.
"It's always important to get off to a good start, but it's not the end of our season if we don't. I think we are capable of it. I think we match up. We have had a couple of bad hitting games but not usually back-to-back. I think it will be a great series, and I think we will be ready to go."
Despite the recent offensive struggles over the past three games in which they've scored only two runs, the Lady Techsters still sports a .310 team batting average led by Kristen Miles (.400, 11-12 SB), Erin Kipp (.371, 14 RBI, 9-10 SB), Meghan Knowles (.348, 10 RBI), Melanie Goff (.344, 12 RBI), Janna Frandrup (.329, 11 RBI), Alayna Kipp (.328, 2 HR, 9 RBI), Anna Cross (.328, 17 RBI, 15-15 SB), and Amanda Krueger (.297, 3 HR, 15 RBI, 10-11 SB).
This year's version of the Aggies doesn't boast as explosive an offense as in year's past, but NMSU's pitching staff has improved tremendously.
Offensively, the Aggies are led by Amber Olive (.344, 19 runs, 10-13 SB), Kelsey Dodd (.329, 3 HR, 15 RBI), Teresa Conrad (.324) and Staci Rodriguez (.298, 8 HR, 28 RBI) as NMSU boasts a .281 team batting average with 22 home runs.
In the circle the Aggies use a plethora of pitchers led by Alex Newman (8-7, 2.26 ERA), Celisha Walker (1-1, 2.40 ERA), Karysta Donisthorpe (5-2, 3.23 ERA) and Makayla McAdams (2-2, 3.80).
Fans can follow all of the action this weekend via live stats at www.LATechSports.com. A free live audio-only broadcast can also be accessed at http://client.stretchinternet.com/client/latech.portal# with Malcolm Butler providing the call of the games. In-game Twitter updates will also be provided at @LATechSB.