Aggies go 3-0, win tournament in Northern Illinois
Rubber match, anyone?
It will have to wait until some other time, at least as far as the University of New Mexico and Duquesne are concerned.
On the second (and final) day of its season-opening tournament, UNM handled Duquesne 3-1 (25-18, 20-25, 25-20, 25-21) at Johnson Center behind 22 kills from Chantale Riddle. The visitors from Pittsburgh defeated UNM 3-2 on Friday.
UNM at Tiger Invitational, Savannah, Ga.; NMSU hosts tourney at Pan Am Center
The Lobos (3-1) closed the fourth set, and the match, on a 7-0 run to erase a 21-18 deficit.
Earlier Saturday, the Lobos picked up their second win in as many days over Southern, 3-0 (25-11, 25-12, 25-19).
Lobo Ashley Newman tied her career high and led all players with 13 kills. Freshman Skye Gullatt added 12. Redshirt freshman Hannah Johnson handled most of the setting, tallying 27 assists.
“It was nice to be able to play with the lineup a bit,” head coach Jeff Nelson said. “We never really had our starters in and gave some others a chance to play. Skye and Ashley both had big kills and Skye had big numbers in general. She has such a great personality and it’s fun to see her do well. It’s good to give our newcomers a chance to get some experience.”
Overall, UNM had 43 kills to the Jaguars’ 20.
“Offensively we looked really good, but defensively we didn’t block as many balls as we needed to,” Nelson said. “We had different lineups in and blocking is kind of like dancing in that there’s a rhythm to it, so when you’re mixing players up a lot it’s hard to make that happen.”
Jaquel Watts had a team-high seven kills for Southern.
NMSU WINS NIU TOURNEY: In DeKalb, Ill., the Aggies captured the Northern Illinois tournament with 3-1 wins over North Dakoka State (28-16, 12-25, 25-17, 25-22 ) and the host team (14-25, 25-19, 25-16, 25-10).
Sophomore outside hitter Meredith Hays led the way in both matches for the 3-0 Aggies, a match-high 25 kills and 10 digs for her first double-double of the year against NDSU and 18 kills against NIU.
Against North Dakota State, junior Ciara Brown had a team-high 31 assists to control the offense. Freshman Taylor Livoti added 14 assists as the Aggies ran a 6-2 offense once again.
“I thought we got outplayed emotionally, and they served the ball well and they took it to us at points in the match,” Aggie coach Mike Jordan said. “We have to work on our ball control and we have to continue to work hard defensively.”
The Aggies host a tourney beginning Friday. Cincinnati, Drake and Northwestern will come to Las Cruces.
— This article appeared on page D3 of the Albuquerque Journal