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Aggies Sweep FIU at Home to Move Into Second Place 

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico (KVIA) -- Home is where the runs are. For NM State, another day of high-octane offense led to its third win in a sweep of FIU. The Crimson & White utilized a six-run bottom of the sixth inning that gave them the final lead of the game. The home team tallied 12 hits, winning 9-5 to improve to 10-5 in CUSA games and 24-17 overall. With the victory, NM State matched WKU’s 10-5 mark, moving into a tie for second place behind Liberty; the Aggies’ opponent next weekend. 


The Panthers were held scoreless in the first two innings, setting up the bottom of the Aggie batting order. In the bottom of the second, NM State capitalized on back-to-back singles from Riley Carley and Jayleen Burton to start the frame. With Carley 120 feet from home plate, a Kayla Lunar bunt was followed up by a sacrifice fly from her younger sister Kendal, scoring Carley to take a 1-0 lead. 

FIU responded in the top of the third, starting with a solo home run from Ashton Lansdale. The Panthers added a pair of singles, later scoring on a sacrifice fly to take a 2-1 lead. The lead would swell to 3-1 in the top of the fourth inning on a two-out RBI single. Meanwhile, the Aggies stranded a runner in each of the first four innings, failing to cut into the deficit. 

Jaileen Mancha entered the circle in relief of Emily Dix to begin the fifth inning, allowing the fourth consecutive run by the Panthers to take a 4-1 lead. The lead was cut to one in the bottom of the fourth, as the Aggies followed up a leadoff popout with three straight baserunners. Devin Elam then came up to bat, continuing her scorching hot two-week stretch. The sophomore outfielder ripped a single to left field, scoring Jillian Taylor. Later, a wild pitch would score the Aggies’ third run, making the game 4-3 in FIU’s favor entering the sixth inning. 

The Panthers’ first two batters popped out, before the visitors got on with a walk. The next at bat, Lansdell poked the first pitch of her at-bat to right field for a triple, doubling FIU’s lead to 5-3. Jaileen Mancha stopped the bleeding there, forcing a groundout to Jessica Carreon at second base. 

The game flipped entirely on its head in the home half of the sixth frame. A pinch-hitting Kristen Boyd led off, earning a walk after fighting through a seven-pitch at-bat. Savannah Bejarano pinch-hit behind Boyd, but grounded into a fielder’s choice. The Aggies had one out and a runner on first base, and proceeded to put the next seven batters on base. A Jessica Carreon walk was followed by five straight extra-base hits, starting with a Jillian Taylor double that tied the game at 5-5. 

With Taylor on second, freshman standout Desirae Spearman launched her 13th home run of the season to left field, taking a 7-5 lead for the home team. Dezianna Patmon took the very next pitch to right-center for a double, and brought up Devin Elam behind her. The cleanup hitter took her second pitch to right field for another double, scoring Patmon to take an 8-5 lead. At that point, NM State had recorded five runs, two doubles and a home run in the span of six pitches. In the very next at-bat, Riley Carley sent a 1-2 offering into left field for the Aggies’ fourth double of the frame, scoring Elam from second base. The inning ended with a strikeout and popup, but not before the Aggies took a commanding 9-5 lead into the top of the final stanza. 

While FIU led off with a single, the Panthers would go down without much of a fight in the remainder of the way. A pair of flyouts had the visitors down to their final strike after holding a two-run lead just an inning prior. Mancha delivered one final dagger, forcing a swing and a miss from the Panthers to end the contest. 


  • Jillian Taylor extended her hitting streak to seven games, adding to what is the longest such streak of her career. 
  • Taylor recorded three home runs and 7 RBIs across the week. The senior tallied a homer in three consecutive games, and posted a staggering 2.514 OPS in three games against FIU.
  • Devin Elam finished the five-game week with a .611 average, tallying 11 hits, a home run, three doubles, nine RBIs and a 1.555 OPS.
  • Elam is now leading all of CUSA with a .500 batting average in league games, and ranks seventh with a 1.200 OPS.
  • Jayleen Burton is in the midst of one of the best stretches of her career. The senior recorded five hits and an OPS of 1.250 in the three-game series. Her batting average for the season is up to .333, a single-season career high.
  • In conference games, NM State now holds a .321 team batting average, well clear of second-place FIU, who stands at .303.


NM State will face a short turnaround, traveling to Albuquerque for the third and final game of the season series with I-25 rival New Mexico on Tuesday, Apr. 16. NM State took both in a doubleheader against UNM in Las Cruces, and will attempt to go three-for-three in the season rivalry series. The final 2024 edition of the Battle of I-25 will be broadcast on Mountain West Network and available to follow via 

For complete coverage of NM State Softball during the 2024 season, visit – the official home of the Aggies – and follow the Aggies on Facebook (NM State Softball), Twitter (@NMStateSoftball) and Instagram (@NMStateSoftball).

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Bea Martinez

NMSU Athletics


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