LAS VEGAS (Nov. 21) - The New Mexico State volleyball team (22-8) swept San Jose State 25-11, 28-26, 25-13 in the quarterfinals of the 2011 Western Athletic Conference Tournament which is being held in the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.
NM State dominated sets one and three, while the Spartans competed tough against the Aggies in the second set. The Aggies out-hit SJSU .371 to .190 and out-blocked the Spartans 7-3. Freshman outside hitter Meredith Hays tallied a match-high 14 kills and senior Kelsey Brennan posted a .467 hitting percentage with 10 kills on 15 attempts.
"It's always good to start the tournament with a sweep," head coach Mike Jordan said.
Three time first team All-WAC selection Jennah DeVries guided the offense with 35 assists and was one dig short of a double-double, and second team All-WAC libero Kelsi Phillips posted a match-high 17 digs and was the only player in the match with double-digit kill figures.
NM State jumped out to a 6-1 lead in set one that forced SJSU to call a timeout. After the Spartans pulled to within four at 6-2 the Aggies ran away with the set and ended up winning 25-11. The Aggies hit .464 as a team in the set and posted only one attack error.
Set two was much closer as SJSU took its first lead of the match at 1-0 when Hays tallied an attack error. The Aggies fell behind by as many as four but kept fighting and eventually tied the set at 16-16 when an SJSU attacker made an error. The Aggies struggled a bit and gave SJSU three set point chances. A kill by DeVries gave NM State some momentum and got NM State to within one at 24-23. The Aggies tied the set at 24 all and ended winning the set 28-26.
It seemed that it would be another competitive set as SJSU jumped out to a 3-2 lead. That was the last lead the Spartans took although they kept it close early on with a tie coming at 8-8. The Aggies went on a 9-2 scoring rally that was topped off by a Desiree Scott kill to force SJSU into a time out. NM State took advantage of an 8-2 scoring run to win the set 25-13.
The Aggies now take on No. 2 seed Idaho at 6pm (MT) in Las Vegas, Nev. The Aggies spilt the series with Idaho this season and are 1-0 against the Vandals in the WAC Tournament. NM State defeated the Vandals 3-0 in the 2006 WAC Tournament.
The match will be aired on the radio in Las Cruces on KSNM AM 570 and can be watched on the Internet at www.WAC.tv for a fee.