Sul Ross Baseball Continues El Paso Pipeline with 8 Local Players
Editor's note: Alicia Barron is our brand new intern for 600 ESPN El Paso! She is a multimedia journalism major at UTEP and has a passion for sports. Prior to attending UTEP, Alicia golfed collegiately for Ranger Junior College. In this article, she profiles eight El Paso natives playing baseball for Sul Ross and gives the spotlight to two of their key members.
Just three hours away from the Sun City, eight El Paso natives are playing at the collegiate level for Sul Ross. The program is coached by Ely Gallegos, who was an assistant coach for four years until he was promoted to the head coaching position this season. They currently hold a record of 11-13 in conference play. The team sits in seventh in the ASC conference standings.
Traditionally, Sul Ross recruits El Pasoans for many of their sports.
There are a total of eight players on the roster who are from El Paso, including Aaron “Mo” Morales (Montwood High School), Primo Vasquez (Montwood High School), Christian Loveless (Eastlake High School), Christopher Ulloa (Pebble Hills High School) , Freddy Nuñez (Clint High School), Alvaro Hernandez (Americas High School), Dorian Acosta (Del Valle High School), and Ricardo Franco (Clint High School).
“We all played against each other when we were little and also played with some of them also on the same team, it's cool kinda regrouping,” says Morales.
While every El Paso player has a key role on the team, two stood out from the rest:
Aaron “Mo” Morales #3
Mo went to Montwood High School where he played three sports in basketball, baseball, and football. Then, he continued his collegiate baseball career at St. Mary’s University. After a year in San Antonio, he found a better opportunity to play the sport he loves at Sul Ross.
Morales plays right field and has the second best batting average on the team. He has had a total of three home runs and 27 RBIs.
“I've never been like a home run hitter, so I mean, to have three on the season is kind of, it's something pretty cool for me” said Mo when asked about his home runs this season.
Primo Vasquez #27
Primo also went to Montwood High School and played baseball. He then continued his collegiate career at St. Mary’s University and graduated with a bachelor's degree in exercise and sports medicine. After getting a very convincing call from Morales he decided that his collegiate baseball career was not over: “So I was like, why not? Like let's do it. So we got lucky to both be able to get an opportunity over here at Sul Ross.”
Vasquez was named ASC Hitter of the Week this season for the week of March 28 through April 1. He plays second base and designated hitter at times. He has had two home runs and 18 RBIs on the season thus far.
”The plan is to make the conference tournament and that's still, it's still in our hands. We still could do that," he said. "So if we do that, that'll be a big goal for us. Was a big goal for the team, especially as our coach's first year, it'll be a good milestone for him. So we're just trying to make that conference tournament and continue to make a run and see what happens.”
Sul Ross Baseball will play their last series in Belton, TX against the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor this weekend. The Lobos will need to win the series in order to qualify for postseason play.