Zias earn lone win in series with big inning

Freedom Newspapers

PORTALES — Eastern New Mexico University scored 11 runs in the bottom of the fifth Sunday to beat Western New Mexico 16-8 on the eight-run rule after five innings and salvage the finale of a four-game weekend series.

WNMU won the opener of Sunday’s doubleheader in five innings 18-7, scoring 11 times in the top of the fifth to break open a one-run game.

Freshman first baseman Elizabeth Whipkey drove in three runs with a pair of singles and junior second baseman Tracy Jordan smacked a two-run double in the Zias’ fifth-inning comeback in Game 2. ENMU, which led 5-1 after one inning, poked 11 hits in the fifth in erasing an 11-5 deficit.

ENMU (6-7) finished the game with 18 hits with Whipkey, who drove in four runs, and Jordan each going 3-for-4 and five other players collecting a pair of hits.

Junior Patricia Gonzales (2-3) survived 13 Mustangs hits to pick up the pitching victory.

WNMU second baseman Stephanie Kirkpatrick went 3-for-4 and drove in four runs to lead the Mustangs (7-5) to a come-from-behind victory in the opener.

Jessica Nocas hit a two-run double and Jordan and Tori Picazo belted two-run homers to stake the Zias to a 6-4 lead through two innings of the first game. But Kirkpatrick’s two-run single capped a three-run third that put the Mustangs ahead for good, and Western chased ENMU’s Amanda Nightingale (3-1) with an 11-run fifth that included two-run singles by Rachel Stahle and Kirkpatrick and a two-run double by Tiffany Devaurs.

Whipkey also had three hits for the Zias in that game. Western’s Megan Gross (5-1) survived the rocky start to pick up the win.

ENMU went 3-3 on its weekend homestand, sweeping a doubleheader from New Mexico Highlands on Friday. The Zias are home again at 11 a.m. on Wednesday for a twin bill against Adams State.