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Rebels rout Lobos in series opener

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The New Mexico baseball team gave up six runs in the eighth and ninth innings to fall 8-2 to visiting UNLV on Friday night.

The Rebels (9-3, 4-0 Mountain West) ended a nine-game losing streak in Albuquerque. The Lobos (8-5-1, 0-1) gave them plenty of help with four critical errors in those decisive innings.

UNLV's Patrick Armstrong reached on a fielding error by third baseman Jered Meek to start the eighth. A.J. Hernandez then reached on a fielding error by right fielder Chase Harris. After a sacrifice bunt moved both runners into scoring position, UNM turned to lefty reliever Carson Schneider.

The freshman gave up a sacrifice fly to Edgar Montes that put the Rebels ahead 3-2. Taylor Duree then replaced Schneider, only to hit Matt McAllister with a pitch and then commit a balk that enabled Hernandez to score.

It got no better for the Lobos in the ninth. After an Armstrong RBI single made it 5-2, he came around to score on a dropped flyball by shortstop Jared Holley. Montes followed with an RBI single and later came around to score on a throwing error by Holley.

The late-game drama overshadowed the pitching showdown between UNLV junior Erick Fedde and UNM sophomore Drew Bridges. Both of them allowed two runs in six innings of work.

Joey Lauria (2-0) got the win in relief for the Rebels while Brayden Torres picked up his second save. They combined for three scoreless innings.

Jonathan Cuellar (1-1) took the loss for the Lobos, charged with two unearned runs in one-plus inning of relief despite not giving up a walk or a hit. Both baserunners reached on errors.

Ryan Padilla went 2-for-4 with a run scored. He was the only UNM batter with multiple hits. There were no extra-base hits in the game by either team.

The Lobos will try to rebound Saturday at 2 p.m.