Gonzales named National Player of the Month, NMSU to host La Salle

Sports

The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association announced its first National Player of the Month for the 2019 season on Thursday. After a stellar opening month, New Mexico State’s Nick Gonzales earned the NCBWA Player of the Month honor.

 

Gonzales has been red-hot since opening day, leading all three national Triple Crown categories with a .590 batting average, 10 home runs and 37 runs batted in through 13 games. The sophomore also leads the NCAA in runs (28), hits (36), slugging percentage (1.213) and total bases (74).

 

This impressive start has earned Gonzales the first two Western Athletic Conference Player of the Week honors to begin the season and he was also named the Collegiate Baseball National Player of the Week on Feb. 18. The Vail, Ariz. native has had at least one hit in every game this season and multiple base knocks in 10 of the 13 games. The second baseman has also homered in eight different games, including each of the last four, and he has produced two or more RBI in nine contests this season.

 

The New Mexico State baseball team looks to keep the momentum rolling when the team welcomes La Salle to Presley Askew Field for a four-game weekend series, March 8-10.

NMSU to host La Salle for four-game series

The New Mexico State baseball team prepares for another four-game weekend series hosting La Salle, March 8-10, at Presley Askew Field. The Aggies and Explorers have had a pair of four-game series all-time that the Crimson & White swept in 2003 and 2013 at home.

 

PROBABLE STARTERS:

Friday, March 8 at 6:05 p.m.

NM State:Brock Whittlesey, RHP (3-0, 3.32 ERA)

La Salle:Matt Holt, RHP (1-0, 4.50 ERA)

 

Saturday, March 9 at 1:05 p.m. (Game 1)

NM State:Justin Dehn, RHP (3-0, 4.67 ERA)

La Salle:Jackson Ray, LHP (1-1, 4.86 ERA)

 

Saturday, March 9 at 4:35 p.m. (Game 2)

NM State:Chris Jefferson, RHP (2-1, 4.76 ERA)

La Salle:Mike Anthony, RHP (1-1, 1.35 ERA)

 

Sunday, March 10 at 1:05 p.m.

NM State:Chance Hroch, RHP (3-0, 1.96 ERA)

La Salle:Aidan Frye, RHP (1-0, 5.14 ERA)
 

GAMEDAY PROMOTIONS

Fans who can make it out to Presley Askew Field get to enjoy some great promotions all weekend long for the series against the Explorers. The series opener on Friday, March 8, features a ceremonial first pitch by NM State men’s basketball star senior Eli Chuha just a day before Senior Night for the basketball team. Friday’s contest also offers an opportunity for a lucky fan to receive two tickets to the final men’s basketball game with a random free drawing. If Friday could not have sounded any better, one-dollar popcorn is also set to be sold at the concession stand.

 

On Saturday, fans are offered the chance for some free baseball with the Crimson & White set for a doubleheader against La Salle. Then in the series finale, we recognize that Sundays are for the Dogs as it is Bark in the Park where fans are encouraged to bring their friendly canines to The ‘Skew and one-dollar hot dogs are also being sold.

 

GET CONNECTED

Get up to the minute information and news about the NM State baseball team all season on Twitter, and Instagram by following @NMStateBaseball and on Facebook.com/NMStateBaseball.

 

LIVE STATS

Live stats are available for all of NM State’s home games this season. Those looking to follow along with the stats can access each game onStatBroadcast or by visiting the team’s schedule page online.

 

WHERE TO WATCH

For fans who can’t make it to The ‘Skew for the weekend series, they can still catch the games on television or through streaming. Friday’s series opener is available live on FOX Sports Arizona and can also be streamed on Eleven Sports NEXT. FOX Sports can also be seen on delay on FOX College Sports Pacific. The Friday tilt features Adam Young on the play-by-play with Jerry Lujan serving as the analyst.

 

Each of the four games for the weekend series can also be streamed live on theWAC Digital Network.

 

LISTEN UP!

Aggie fans that are looking to listen in on the games can hear Adam Young (@youngpbp) for the entire doubleheader on Saturday and the finale Sunday afternoon on 91.5 FM KRUX. Fans can also listen to the game live with their mobile or tablet device on the TuneIn app for free by searching KRUX or by using the link on the team’s schedule pageonline.

 

TAKING A LOOK AT LASALLE

The La Salle Explorers travel to Presley Askew Field for a weekend series currently holding a 6-3 overall record. The Explorers have won their first three series of the season 2-1 taking down Charleston Southern, Rider and Albany.

 

Following the series win over Albany this past weekend, freshman right-handed pitcher Aidan Fryewas named Atlantic 10 Conference Rookie of the Week and Philadelphia Big 5 Pitcher of the Week on Monday. Frye threw a complete game shutout in Sunday’s seven-inning victory over Albany.

He scattered just three hits and one walk while striking out eight en route to his first career win.

 

La Salle’s bullpen has been a major reason for its 6-3 start to the season. Senior Connor Hinchliffe has yet to surrender a run over five appearances (6.0 IP) and is 4-for-4 in save opportunities. Entering their fourth series of the year, the Explorers’ relief pitchers own a 1.07 ERA and have a 5.29 strikeout-to-walk ratio while holding opponents to a lowly .156 batting average. Junior Niko Jenkins has yet to allow a hit over two appearances and sophomore Colin Scanlon is 2-0 with a 1.13 ERA, 0.63 WHIP and 10 strikeouts over three relief appearances (8.0 IP).

 

The Explorers also crack the top-25 national both as a team and individually. Connor Hinchliffeis tied for third in the nation in saves with 4. Matt Holt ties for the nation’s lead as one of 16 qualifying pitchers that have not surrendered a walk this year. Ben Fasoranks seventh in the nation in RBIs per game with an average of 1.78.

 

As a team, La Salle’s pitching staff is 11th in the country with 2 shutouts. La Salle’s pitchers also rank 11th nationally with just 2.62 walks per 9 innings. The Explorers pitching staff is 14th in the nation with a 3.52 strikeout-to-walk ratio and is 22nd nationally with a WHIP of 1.14.

 

IN THE NATION

13 games into the season the Aggies currently rank in the top-25 nationally in 15 categories, including 11 NCAA-leading statistics:

NM State (Rk)                  Category                             NCAA

.408 (1st)                           Batting Average                 .408

16 (1st)                              Double Plays                        16

36 (1st)                              Doubles                                 36

39 (1st)                              Hit by Pitch                           39

196 (1st)                            Hits                                       196

29 (1st)                              Home Runs                           29

.522 (1st)                           On-Base %                          .522

200 (1st)                            Runs                                     200

15.4 (1st)                           Scoring                                15.4

.710 (1st)                           Slugging %                          .710

11 (1st)                              Triples                                    11

85 (4th)                              Base on Balls                        99

9 (11th)                              Sacrifice Flies                       12

.846 (14th)                         W/L %                                  1.000

.982 (24th)                         Fielding %                            .994

 

NATIONAL PLAYER OF THE WEEK? NO, MONTH

The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association announced its first National Player of the Month for the 2019 season on Thursday. After a stellar opening month, New Mexico State’s Nick Gonzales earned the NCBWA Player of the Month honor.

 

Gonzales has been red-hot since opening day, leading all three national Triple Crown categories with a .590 batting average, 10 home runs and 37 runs batted in through 13 games. The sophomore also leads the NCAA in runs (28), hits (36), slugging percentage (1.213) and total bases (74).

 

This impressive start has earned Gonzales the first two Western Athletic Conference Player of the Week honors to begin the season and he was also named the Collegiate Baseball National Player of the Week on Feb. 18. The Vail, Ariz. native has had at least one hit in every game this season and multiple base knocks in 10 of the 13 games. The second baseman has also homered in eight different games, including each of the last four, and he has produced two or more RBI in nine contests this season.

 

LAST TIME OUT

Play for the Aggies this past weekend saw the team pull off the four-game sweep of Delaware at home. The Crimson & White only trailed for one inning and was able to outscore the Blue Hens 54-12.

 

In the series opener on Friday, March 1, the NM Sate bats got rolling early leading the team to an 11-3 victory that also saw starter Brock Whittlesey post a career-high 12 strikeouts with zero walks. Then in the opener of the doubleheader on Saturday, the Aggies continued to cruise taking down the Blue Hens 17-3.

 

The momentum for NM State continued into the second game of the doubleheader that saw the Crimson & White win the nightcap, 15-2. Then in the series finale on Sunday, NM State closed out the series sweep with an 11-4 victory in the matinee showing.

 

UP NEXT

Following the weekend series, the New Mexico State baseball team heads back on the road for four games beginning with a midweek game at Arizona State on Wednesday, March 13. The Aggies then fly to Lincoln, Neb. to take on Nebraska in a three-game weekend series, March 15-17.

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