Aggies Battle Lady Techsters Saturday Afternoon
Courtesy: New Mexico State University  
Release:  01/27/2012

Aggies Battle Lady Techsters Saturday Afternoon

The New Mexico State women's basketball team (4-15, 1-3 WAC) battles Western Athletic Conference preseason favorite Louisiana Tech (9-10, 2-2) Saturday afternoon. The Aggies and Lady Techsters play in the first game of an NM State doubleheader at 3:30 p.m. Saturday inside the Pan American Center. The Aggie men's team plays Fresno State later in the evening at 7:30 p.m.

Fans can listen to the game live on KSNM 570 AM with Kyle Doperalski calling the action. Live updates via Twitter will be available by following @NMStateAggies. Live stats links can be found at NMStateSports.com.

NM State is looking for its first win against LA Tech since Valentine's Day 2008 when the Aggies knocked off the Lady Techsters 65-55 in Las Cruces. Since then LT has won seven straight in the series and leads the all-time battle 14-2.

The Aggies dropped a pair of WAC road contests last week at San Jose State, 67-62, and at Hawai'i, 51-48. Senior Tabytha Wampler scored a season high 24 points in the loss at Hawai'i last Saturday. Seniors Kaitlyn Soto and Erica Sanchez posted career high point totals of 23 and 20, respectively to lead the team at San Jose State two days earlier.

Louisiana Tech also played the same conference foes on the road last weekend. LT also lost to Hawai'i last week but bounced back to defeat SJSU last Saturday. The Lady Techsters battled shooting woes in a 61-46 loss to UH but earned its second conference win at San Jose State, 70-64.

Inside the Series with Louisiana Tech

The Lady Techsters have won seven straight in the series and lead it 14-2 overall.  NM State last beat the Lady Techsters at home on Feb. 14, 2008, 65-55. The Aggies' other series win occurred at the 2007 WAC tourney quarterfinals held in Las Cruces, with NM State posting a 63-57 victory.

Louisiana Tech swept the Aggies last season in back-to-back games. LT won in Ruston 85-63 on Feb. 7 then defeated the Aggies 88-79 in Las Cruces on Feb. 12.

Wins in the series have been decisive lately with only six of the past 12 games between the schools decided by less than 10 points and no contests closer than six points.

Scouting the Lady Techsters

The Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters (9-10, 2-2), of the Western Athletic Conference, are 3-3 in true road games this season. LT and NM State have played the same four WAC opponents this season. Both teams beat Idaho and lost to Utah State at home. Both squads also lost at Hawai'i. The lone difference in the win column is LT's win at San Jose State last Saturday; two days after NM State fell to the Spartans.

LA Tech is 9-4 when scoring 63 points or more. Additionally, the Techsters are 2-8 when allowing opponents 65 points or more this season.

On offense LA Tech averages 66.6 points per game, which ranks No. 97 in the nation, and shoots 40.7 percent from the field, which ranks No. 92 in the country. Defensively, the Lady Techsters allow 67.8 points per game and allow opponents to 40.9 percent shooting from the floor.

LT ranks No. 48 nationally in three-point field goal percentage at 33.9 and stands at No.56 with 14.5 assists per game. The Lady Techsters' assist-turnover ratio of 0.87 rates No. 69 in the country.

Seniors Jasmine Bendolph and Shantale Bramble-Donaldson lead the Lady Techsters on offense this season. Bendolph dishes the ball effectively to rank No.19 nationally with 5.6 assists per game and rates No. 45 with a 1.81 assist-turnover ratio. The guard ranks second on the team with 9.8 points per game. Forward Bramble-Donaldson leads the team with 10.8 points and 7.2 rebounds per game.

Last Time against the Lady Techsters

LAS CRUCES (Feb. 12, 2011) - New Mexico State women's basketball senior guard Madison Spence posted a season high of 29 points, including 23 in the second half, to lead the Aggies in an 88-79 loss to league leader Louisiana Tech inside the Pan American Center Saturday night.

The senior captain went 11-of-21 from the floor including 4-of-7 from beyond the arc. Spence also was a perfect 3-for-3 from the foul line. She scored more than half (23) of the Aggies' 42 points in the second half.

Spence led four Aggies in double figures. Fellow senior backcourt mate Jasmine Lowe added 18, 16 of which came before halftime. Classmate Danisha Corbett poured in 12 points and junior forward Tabytha Wampler scored 11 to go with nine rebounds, one board shy of a double-double. Freshman guard Jasmine Rutledge was held scoreless but cleaned up on the board with 13 caroms.

After LA Tech had maintained the lead for most of the first half, NM State stormed back late to take a one-point advantage into the locker rooms at 37-36. The Lady Techsters opened the second half with a 12-5 run to go up 48-42 just four minutes into the half. After LT extended the advantage to 13 points - the largest of the night, the Aggies rallied behind Spence to claw back to within four with 55 seconds at 77-73.

However, LA Tech secured the game at the free throw line late. The Lady Techsters held a huge advantage at the stripe making 31-of-37 attempts while NM State only attempted 16 foul shots, making 13.

NM State shot 40 percent from the floor and from behind the arc. LT finished at 43 percent from the field and 46 percent from long range. The Aggies out-rebounded LA Tech 44-38.

NM State drops to 10-13 overall and 4-5 in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) while LA Tech remains unbeaten in conference play at 10-0 and improves to 18-5 overall.

Senior forward Adrienne Johnson led four Techsters in double figures by posting a double-double with game-highs of 24 points and 15 rebounds. Senior Tarkeisha Wysinger-Mackey also posted a double-double with 23 points and 10 boards for LA Tech.

Wampler Nets Season High at Hawai'i

New Mexico State women's basketball senior Tabytha Wampler posted a season-high 24 points but the Aggies dropped a 51-48 decision at Hawai'i inside the Rainbow Wahine's Stan Sherriff Center Jan. 21. She just missed a double-double with 24 points and nine rebounds.

Wampler was two points shy of her career of 26 set against Cal State Northridge last season on Dec. 5, 2010. Wampler also grabbed 14 rebounds against the Matadors that evening.

Soto and Sanchez Sizzle in San Jose

Senior guards Kaitlyn Soto and Erica Sanchez each posted career high point totals of 23 and 20, respectively, at San Jose State Jan. 19. The duo combined for 43 of NM State's 62 points (69 percent) and each guard grabbed four rebounds against the Spartans.

Soto poured in 23 points that included a trio of three-point buckets, smashing her previous career high of 17 matched Jan. 1 against Shaw. The point guard was also a perfect 6-of-6 from the line while playing all 40 minutes of the game.

Sanchez fired in a career-best six long-range threes at SJSU that accounted for 18 of her career high 20 tallies. A crucial jumper from the right side late in the game accounted for the other bucket. Sanchez shot 46.1 percent from beyond the arc but went 1-of-3 inside the line. The new high point total tops her previous best of 16 tallies set earlier this season against Arizona Nov. 21 when Sanchez canned four three-point baskets against the Wildcats.

Senior Quartet Takes over Starting Roles

NM State started four seniors at San Jose State and at Hawai'i last week. It marked the fourth and fifth consecutive games that at least a trio of seniors saw the floor for the opening tip beginning with the Boise State game on Jan. 7. Senior guard Kaitlyn Soto and senior forward Tabytha Wampler continued their season-long starting streaks.

Senior forward Kelsie Rozendaal made her fifth start of the season at UH. Prior to this season, Rozendaal had started just once on Dec. 28, 2008 against Long Island. Senior Erica Sanchez has started four of the last five games for the Aggies. Sanchez previously started 18 games during the 2008-09 season.

Junior forward Chrissy Fletcher started against Idaho on Jan. 14. She and sophomore guard Jasmine Rutledge each compiled 14 straight starts prior to the Boise State game. Junior guard Camila Rosen has started the Aggies' last 11 contests. Early in the season, freshman guard Hannah Womack was on the floor for the opening tip in the first eight games alongside Soto in the backcourt.

Wampler leads the team by averaging just shy of a double-double through 19 contests at 13.3 points and 9.2 rebounds per game. Soto ranks second on the squad at 9.3 points per game and Rutledge stands second on the boards with 4.8 per contest.

Aggies' Record Full of Nailbiters

NM State has played in five games, almost a third of its schedule thus far, in games decided by a single point. The Aggies are 2-3 in those games including a season-opening win at Houston on Nov. 11, 63-62, and their first home win of the year against UCSB on Dec. 19, 52-51.

Two of the three Aggie losses were at the hands of bitter rival New Mexico. The Lobos won in Albuquerque 54-53 on Dec. 4 before sweeping NM State after a 59-58 decision in Las Cruces Dec. 30. The third Aggie one-point defeat was to Southern Utah in the final game of the Hotel Encanto Classic as the Thunderbirds secured a 58-57 win in the final seconds on Nov. 27.

Missed It by That Much

Nine of the Aggies' 19 games this season have been decided by five points or less. Including its 2-3 record in one-point games, NM State is 2-7 overall in those contests.

NM State lost to rival UTEP, 76-72, on Nov. 16 in overtime. The Aggies fell 56-53 to Boise State on Jan. 7. Both of those contests took place at home in Las Cruces. The Aggies' latest close downfalls occurred on the road at San Jose State 67-62 Jan. 19 and at Hawai'i 51-48 Jan. 21.

The only other single-digit outcome this season was the Aggies' eight-point victory over Shaw on Jan. 1, 61-53.

Rosen Posts First Career Double-Double against Utah State

One game after posting a career-high 13 points against Boise State Jan. 7, junior guard Camila Rosen continued to capitalize on her role as the fifth player in the starting rotation that consists of four seniors. In the WAC opener against Utah State on Jan. 12, Rosen posted her first double-double of her career. She posted 10 points and a career-high 10 rebounds against USU.

Wampler Becomes 19th Member of Aggie 1,000-Point Club with Game-Winning Bucket versus UCSB

With her game-winning basket against UCSB Dec. 19 with 1:07 left in the game, senior Tabytha Wampler posted her 1,000th career point. Wampler becomes NM State's 19th member of the 1,000-point club with the bucket and third player to accomplish the feat in the past three seasons after departed seniors Danisha Corbett reach the milestone last season and Madison Spence attained the mark in 2010.

Wampler passed Corbett's career point total of 1,070 to move into No. 18 on the Aggie all-time scoring list on Jan. 14 with 11 points against Idaho. The senior co-captain currently has accumulated 1,108 career points, 40 behind former Aggie Paulina Blunt (1989-1994) who is currently No. 17 on the all-time list with 1,148 points.       

NM State Top-19 Scoring List (spots 14-19)             Point Total        Point Margin Ahead of Wampler

14. Mari Sanchez (1999-2003)                              1,196 pts.          88

15. Donna Goggin (1975-79)                                1,163 pts.          55

16. Ann McReynolds (1975-78)                             1,162 pts.          54

17. Paulina Blunt (1989-94)                                 1,148 pts.          40

18. Tabytha Wampler (2008-present)                      1,108 pts.

19. Danisha Corbett (2007-11)                             1,070 pts.

Wampler Climbing All-Time Rebound List

Wampler is also doing double duty on the floor this season for the Aggies. She is averaging just shy of a double-double through 19 games this season with 13.2 points and 9.2 boards per game. In 2011, the senior captain has added seven double dips to increase her career total to 16. Wampler posted her latest double-double in conference against Idaho Jan. 14 with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

Her seven double-doubles ranks among the top 50 nationally. Wampler is only the second player since 2000 to post over a dozen dual performances on the court, ranking only behind former Aggie Sherell Neal's career total of 41.

Wampler opened the season by matching her career high in rebounds with 18 caroms at Houston and scored a team-high 21 points.   In the Aggies' first home game of the year, Wampler posted her second dual performance of the season with 16 points and 16 rebounds against Idaho State. Her third double dip came against Arizona with 14 points and 13 caroms. Number four came at Boise State on Dec. 11 when Wampler posted 22 points and 13 boards.

Wampler started 2012 with back-to-back double-double outings after posting 15 points and 11 rebounds on New Year's Day against Shaw three days before recording 15 points and 12 boards Jan. 4 at UMKC.

With 794 career boards, Wampler is climbing the Aggie all-time rebounding list. After grabbing nine rebounds at Hawai'i, she passed Aggie Hall of Famer Vicki Evans for eighth-place on the NM State career rebounding list. Wampler is 43 boards from seventh all-time.

NM State Top-10 Rebounding List (spots 7-9)    Rebound Total  Rebound Margin Ahead of Wampler

7. Diane Tschasar (1979-83)                                837 rbs.                 43

8. Tabytha Wampler (2008-present)                        794 rbs.

9. Vicki Evans (1985-89)                                      790 rbs.

Rozendaal Posts Career High at UMKC

Senior forward Kelsie Rozendaal swished her first three-point attempt of the year in the first half at UMKC Jan. 4 en route to a career high point total of 15 points that tied for the team-high total.

The three-pointer was only Rozendaal's second make in three career attempts, but she shot two additional treys against the Kangaroos making one and missing the other to finish the night at 67 percent from long range. The senior was slightly better at the free throw line going 3-of-4. Rozendaal also added four boards and ranked third on the squad with 26 minutes of action on the floor.

Womack Leads Aggies at Utah

Freshman guard Hannah Womack came off of the bench Dec. 23 at Utah to lead all Aggie scorers with 15 points. She shot 50 percent from long range (4-8). In 24 minutes of action, Womack was active on the floor defensively with a team high of two steals. Womack was the only Aggie in double figures against the Utes.

Her performance against the Utes marked the third game this season that the freshman led the Aggies in scoring. Womack posted 23 against UTEP in Nov. 16 and led NM State with 13 versus North Dakota on Nov. 26. On the season Womack is averaging 8.6 points per game to rank second on the team.

Womack also saw her free throw streak end at Utah after going 1-of-2 from the line. Prior to the contest, Womack had made her previous 15 attempts at the charity stripe spanning the past seven games.

Soto Sends Aggie Program's 500th Game in the Pan Am into OT

Senior guard Kaitlyn Soto capped a 5-0 rally with 30 seconds to go in regulation to force overtime but the Aggies fell to rival UTEP 76-72 in extra time in a game marked the women's basketball program's 500th game contested all-time in the Pan American Center.

Down two after a missed UTEP free throw, Soto drove the length of the floor and dropped in a game-tying layup with 0:00.5 seconds showing on the clock to force the extra session. The senior guard also scored the first bucket of overtime.

Soto leads the team in minutes played and assists this season while running the offense.

Aggies Open Season with Thrilling Road Win at Houston

NM State won a 63-62 thriller on the road against Houston in the Aggies' season opener inside UH's Hofheinz Pavilion Nov. 11. With five seconds on the clock and the Aggies up two, 63-61, UH senior Porsche Landry was fouled with 0.5 left on the clock and went to the line to shoot a pair of free throws. She made the first to post a career-high 37 points but missed the second to give NM State the victory.

An 11-0 Aggie run late in the second half helped the visitors take control of the game. NM State held UH scoreless for over 3:30 pushing the Aggies up 60-53 with 3:36 remaining. Aggie senior forward Tabytha Wampler scored six of her team-high 21 points during the rally. The forward fouled out with just over two minutes left in the game, but the Aggies held on for the one-point victory.

Trakh Signs Three Commitments for 2012-13 Season

New Mexico State women's basketball head coach Mark Trakh announced three new additions to the Aggie family each signed a National Letter of Intent Wednesday, Nov. 9 to play basketball at NM State beginning in the fall of 2012.

Trakh and his staff signed Abby Scott, a 6-1 senior guard from Madras High School in Madras Ore.; Sasha Weber, a 6-0 senior guard from Timberline High School in Lacey, Wash.; and Shay Young, a 6-0 senior guard from Mount Miguel High School in San Diego on the first day of the early signing period.

Aggies Tabbed Sixth in WAC Preseason Polls; Wampler Earns All-WAC Honors

The WAC coaches and media picked the New Mexico State women's basketball team to finish sixth in their respective preseason polls and both honored senior forward Tabytha Wampler with All-WAC preseason honors in a release by the conference Oct. 18.

The Aggies were also picked sixth in last season's preseason polls. NM State finished 14-18 overall and 7-9 in the conference to place in a tie for fifth last season and entered the WAC Tournament as the sixth seed.

A senior co-captain, Wampler earned First Team Preseason All-WAC honors from the media and garnered Second Team recognition from the coaches.

Wampler enters her senior season after starting all 32 games last year. She returns as the Aggies' leading scorer at 12.7 points per game and leading rebounder at 7.6 boards per game. Wampler posted seven double-doubles last season and ranked No. 31 nationally with an 85.1 free throw percentage.

The senior co-captain scored in double figures 25 times last season. Wampler led the team in rebounding 15 times and in scoring nine times in 2010-11 as a junior.

Last season departed seniors Madison Spence and Jasmine Lowe earned preseason second team honors from the media and coaches. Spence ended the season with All-WAC Second Team honors while Jasmine Rutledge claimed All-WAC Freshman team honors.

Aggies Battle through Difficult Schedule this Year

The Aggies' 2011-12 slate includes a dozen games against teams that played in postseason tournaments a season ago. NM State is set to host 16 games at the Pan American Center for the second straight season - matching the third-most amount of home contests in the NM State record books. It marks the 13th season that the Crimson and White play host to 15 or more opponents in the regular season. In those previous 12 seasons, NM State averaged 20 wins per year.

The Aggies' upcoming non-conference ledger consists of nine home match-ups and six road contests. Prior to the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) schedule, NM State tips against four opponents with 2011 postseason appearances. The Aggies open the season at NCAA Tournament selection Houston (Nov. 11).  NM State later hosts Women's National Invitational Tournament (WNIT) opponents Arizona (Nov. 21), and UC Santa Barbara (Dec. 19). The Aggies travel to Utah (Dec. 21), another NCAA Tourney squad, in its final road trip of 2011.

Rivals UTEP and New Mexico are also on the Aggie docket for a pair of home-and-home contests. New Mexico State will look for its fifth consecutive Aggie Hotel Encanto Thanksgiving Classic title on Nov. 25-27. North Dakota and Southern Utah complete the lineup of the three-day holiday tournament.

NM State opens WAC play with five of its first seven games at home in 2012. The Aggies battle 2011 WNIT participant Utah State at home on Jan. 12. Two days later, Idaho comes to town after a Women's Basketball Invitational appearance last season.

On Jan. 19, the Aggies make their first conference road trip to San Jose State before trekking to Hawai'i for a game on Jan. 21. WAC regular-season champion and NCAA participant Louisiana Tech invades Las Cruces to close out the month of play on Jan. 28. Defending WAC Tournament champion and NCAA qualifier Fresno State visits the Pan American Center on Feb. 2. WNIT participant Nevada completes the first half of the league schedule in Las Cruces on Feb. 4.

NM State faces three tough road contests to complete the season beginning with a trip to LA Tech (Feb. 25). The team wraps up the regular season with contests at Nevada (Mar. 1) and Fresno State (Mar. 3).

The 2012 WAC Tournament will be held at a neutral site in Las Vegas for the second year in a row. The Orleans Arena will play host to both the men's and women's conference basketball tournaments March 7-10.

Four Returning Aggies Earn Academic All-WAC Honors

The 2010-11 Academic All-WAC women's basketball was announced in June. To be eligible, a student-athlete must have completed at least one academic year, have at least a 3.00 cumulative grade point average and have participated in at least 50 percent of the team's contests. The following is a list of the five winter sport honorees from the women's basketball squad: Christina Fletcher, So.; Malia Magazzeni, So.; Kaitlyn Soto, Jr.; Madison Spence, Sr. and Tabytha Wampler, Jr.

Trakh Becomes 10th Aggie Head Coach in Program History

New Mexico State athletic director Dr. McKinley Boston announced the hiring of Mark Trakh as the new head coach of the Aggie women's basketball program on April 8, 2011.

Trakh (pronounced TRACK), 55, becomes the 10th head coach in NM State history and has nearly 30 years of head coaching experience, including 16 at the NCAA Division I level at both Southern California and Pepperdine.

This is a milestone season for Trakh. He will coach his 500th career collegiate game in game 24 this season, which should be at Utah State on Feb. 11. With 11 victories this season, Trakh will reach 300 collegiate career wins, which could come as early as January.

Trakh served as the head coach at USC from 2004-09, where he compiled a 90-64 overall record. In his first two seasons, he guided the Women of Troy to their first NCAA appearances in seven years, as the team advanced to the second round in both 2005 and 2006. The Trojans finished in the top half of the Pac-10 all five years and were the conference tournament runner-up in 2009 and regular season runner-up in 2005.

Before accepting the position at USC, Trakh had a highly successful 11-year tenure as head coach at Pepperdine from 1993-2004. Under his direction, the Waves posted six consecutive 20-win seasons from 1997-2003, made six straight postseason appearances and claimed four West Coast Conference titles. Trakh was twice named the league's coach of the year in both 1999 and 2002, and ended his tenure with a 199-123 overall record and a 99-55 mark in the WCC.

Prior to entering the collegiate ranks, Trakh had a Hall of Fame career as the head girls' coach at Brea Olinda High School in Brea, Calif., from 1981-93. He helped lead the Ladycats to national prominence with a 354-45 overall record, highlighted by four state titles (1989, 1991, 1992 and 1993), six CIF Southern Section championships and 12 Orange League Crowns. In his final five campaigns, Brea Olinda posted an amazing 161-8 record and did not lose more than two games in any single season.

Trakh Fills Out Coaching Staff with Three Assistants

Assistant Coach Jamie Shadian

Shadian comes to the Mesilla Valley after two seasons as an assistant coach at Tennessee State University in Nashville. She joined the Tigers' coaching staff in 2009 and focused her efforts on mentoring guard play, specifically the point guard at the Division I level. The Tigers' 2011 senior point guard responded to the instruction last season to become the TSU assists record holder and place second in assists within the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC).

Assistant Coach Tamara Inoue

Inoue joins the Aggie coaching staff after three seasons as an assistant coach at Santa Clara University. She joined the Broncos' women's basketball program in 2008. Inoue's primary responsibilities at Santa Clara involved recruiting, film exchange, scouting and working with the Bronco guards. After six years of playing and coaching in Australia, Inoue joined the staff in Santa Clara. Inoue's playing days in Australia were cut short due to injury. After rehabilitation in the United States, she returned to coach in Australia's Victorian Basketball League (VBL).

Assistant Coach Aarika Hughes

Trakh is very familiar with Hughes after recruiting her to play for him at the University of Southern California. They spent three seasons together in Los Angeles from 2007-09. Hughes graduated in 2010 with a degree in psychology. Hughes spent much of the past year in her home state of Oregon coaching an Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) squad named Team Concept, based in Portland. The 6-2 guard/forward finished her career with the fifth-best single-season 3-point field goal percentage of 40.9 when she drained 18-of-44 from beyond the arc in 2007-08 under Trakh.

Aggies Host 16 Games This Season

The Aggies' 16 home games at the Pan American Center is the fourth time in five seasons NM State plays host to more than 15 contests. Along with this year's ledger, here are the prior four season slates with 16-plus games in Las Cruces including a school-record 18 games in 2009-10.

  • 2011-12: 16 (3-8 at home, 4-15 overall)
  • 2010-11: 16 (7-9 at home, 14-18 overall)
  • 2009-10: 18 (12-6 at home, 18-14 overall)
  • 1979-80: 17 (10-7 at home, 22-12 overall)
  • 2007-08: 16 (14-2 at home, 23-9 overall)

Prior to the 2011-12 season, NM State played at least 15 regular season games at home in 12 of its 38 previous seasons.  The Aggies averaged 20 wins overall in those dozen seasons while winning at least 18 games in nine of them.

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