Aggies Continue Road Stretch at Denver
This Week: NM State looks to snap its four-game losing streak as the team continues on the road on Saturday, Jan. 26, against Denver. The game can be heard on the Aggie Sports Network and KSNM AM570 in Las Cruces with Jay Sanderson making the call. The Aggies are 9-9 overall with a 3-5 record in conference play going into the week.
Tickets: Tickets are $6 for Adults and as always, kids 12 and under are FREE. A group rate of $4 is available. Call the NM State ticket office at 575-646-1420.
Over the Airwaves: The Aggie Sports Network is producing 15 games on KSNM AM 570 this season, along with any contests in the post season with Jay Sanderson giving the play-by-play. Each of the Aggies road games along with those home games not aired on AggieVision will be available through KSNM. All games aired on radio are produced by the Aggie Sports Network on KSNM AM 570 in Las Cruces. The broadcasts can also be heard from anywhere around the world on the Internet by logging onto www.NMStateSports.com. Just click on the live events link to access the coverage for a fee.
Aggies on TV: Eight games are scheduled to air on television this season on AggieVision. The next game broadcast is the Aggies home game versus WAC foe Texas State on Jan. 31, from the Pan American Center. Fans can also go to www.AggieVision.TV for channel listings.
Live Stats on the Web: Live stats will be available for fans at www.NMStateSports.com at no cost for the entire season. Fans can click on the Live Events link at the top of the NMStateSports.com home page to access the live stats. Live stats for away games may direct fans to the opposing team's athletics page.
Getting Social: Get all the updates of Aggie Athletics on Twitter and Facebook. Get in-game statistics and in-game updates on Twitter @NMStateAggies. Find out about all Aggie Athletics promotions and events on Facebook (NMSU Athletics and The Aggie Student-Athlete).
Looking Ahead: After a tough road stretch the Aggies look to gain traction at home versus Texas State on Jan. 31 and UTSA Feb. 2, after losing their last two games in the Pan Am. Both games will be televised on AggieVision and streamed live on ESPN3.
Looking Back: The Aggies went 0-2 on the weekend with a heartbreaking loss at the buzzer to Utah State after leading 63-62 in the final seconds. The team attempted to bounce back at San Jose State on Saturday, but came up short with a 51-50 loss.
About the Aggies: NM State continues WAC play with a 9-9 overall record and 3-5 in league play. Going into the weekend with three straight losses, the Aggies are looking for a comeback in San Jose, Calif. on Jan. 19. NM State holds the third-best winning percentage (.529) in the conference, after winning three straight early in WAC play. The Aggies held their longest win streak of the season around Thanksgiving when they won four in-a-row at home and had not lost more than two consecutive games this season until dropping four straight as of late. NM State is averaging 58.2 points a game with a .345 team shooting percentage. Senior transfer Stefanie Gilbreath leads the Aggies with 15.9 points per game, while fellow senior Kelsie Rozendaal is averaging 6.9 rebounds a game, good for first on the team. . Rozendaal still manages to average 8.5 points per game and Gilbreath has scored at least 15 points in every conference game this season to bring her league average to 19.4 per game. Starting 14 games this season, Rozendaal leads the team with a .495 shooting percentage through her 15 games played. Sasha Weber is on top for the freshmen this season with nine points per game. She is shooting best on the team from three-point range with .379 percent.
In the WAC: The Aggies went on a three game winning streak on the second week of WAC play before dropping four straight including two at home, giving the team a 3-5 record. Gilbreath leads the Aggies with 18.6 points per game, while Williamson is on top with 30 assists this season. The Aggies have not lost a conference game by a margin larger than six points.
Small Margins: The Aggies have lost the last four WAC games by a combined 15 points.
Last Second Bummer: The last two WAC games (Utah State and SJSU) were decided by two and one point, respectively.
Road to Las Vegas: With three weeks of WAC play complete, the Aggies hold the\ second highest overall winning percentage (.563) in the conference with a 9-8 record. Sitting in the seventh in the league, NM State is even with Denver with a 3-4 record. Seattle U is the outright leader in the WAC thus far with a perfect 5-0 record and LA Tech sits second with a 4-2 conference record. The Aggies are one of three teams in the conference with a winning overall record.
Big D in LC: Aggie defense proves to be the game changer this season as NM State ranks second in the WAC for scoring defense with an average of 59.8 percent.
Leading the Pack: Gilbreath is the third leading scorer in the conference with WAC games. She is averaging 19.4 points per game, only topped by SJSU's Ta'Rea Cunningan (22.7) and Texas State's Diamond Ford (22.2). Gilbreath is also second during league play with 10 blocked shots, she is only bested by Riana Byrd of SJSU.
Home-Court Comfort: The Aggies are 6-4 in the Pan American Center this season. Prior to the Dec. 18 loss to Rio Grande Rival New Mexico, the Aggies boasted a perfect record at home. During the 2011-12 season, five of NM State's six wins came at the Pan Am.
Stefanie Gilbreath: Gilbreath had a standout week with 24 rebounds and an average of 19.0 points on a 35.9 field goal percentage despite two losses for the Aggies. The senior worked for a career high 25 points on Thursday evening against Utah State while gathering nine rebounds with three blocks and three assists. She turned around two days later to pick up her third double-double of the season with a career best 15 rebounds and 13 points. Gilbreath had another three blocks on the day against SJSU as well. Gilbreath now sits on an 18.6 point average in conference play by scoring in the double digits in each WAC game this season.
Kelsie Rozendaal: Playing just one game this week for NM State, Rozendaal worked for the third double-double this season with 10 points and 10 rebounds in the tough loss to SJSU on Saturday, Jan. 19. The senior had a team-high six offensive rebounds in the game in her 24 minutes played. Rozendaal moves her reason average to 7.1 rebounds a game, while still managing 8.6 points per game this season.
Double Doubles: Seniors Kelsie Rozendaal and Stefanie Gilbreath as well as freshman Sasha Weber have collected double-doubles this season in three games this season.
Gilbreath: 15 pts, 10 reb; UTA, 12/29
Gilbreath: 21 pts, 11 reb; Idaho, 1/12
Gilbreath: 13 pts, 11 reb; at SJSU 1/19
Rozendaal: 22 pts, 11 reb; Loyola Marymount, 11/12
Rozendaal: 11 pts, 11 reb; at Texas State, 1/5
Weber: 11 pts, 10 reb; at Texas State, 1/5
It's a Three-Point Game: The Aggies have started eight games with a three pointer this season.
vs. George Mason W, 55-52 (D. Williamson)
vs. UC Irvine W, 50-44 (Sasha Weber)
vs. UTEP W, 69-68 (Sasha Weber)
at Southern Utah W, 70-68 (S. Gilbreath)
vs. UT Arlington L, 62-59 (Abby Scott)
vs. LA Tech W, 71-67 (Abby Scott)
at UTSA W, 69-52 (Abby Scott)
at Texas State W, 61-58 (S. Gilbreath)
at Utah State L, 65-63 (Sasha Weber)
THIS WEEK'S OPPONENTS
About Denver: Averaging 65.6 points per game, the Pioneers of Denver sit at a 3-5 conference record, and are just 8-11 overall. The team won four of five before going on a four-game losing streak. Two of their four recent losses came in very close fashion, losing 67-68 to the SJSU Spartans and 66-69 to Seattle U. Stand out Morgan Van Riper-Rose is averaging 13.6 ppg, over five more points than the second leading scorer at 8.4 ppg. Van Riper-Rose leads the team in almost every statistical category. As the Pioneers look to get back on a winning track, they will need the consistent play of Van Riper-Rose and improve as a team from the field.
Series History versus the Pioneers: The NM State Aggies are 5-5 all-time against the Denver Pioneers. This is the first year Denver is a part of the WAC. The most recent contest was played in 2005 when the Aggies convincingly beat the Pioneers 55-42. The team revisits the Aggies eight years later trying to improve their all-time record to 6-5, but more importantly trying to regain momentum and stay competitive in conference play.
Trakh-ing Down No. 300: Coach Trakh picked up his 300th career win as a Division I head coach on Saturday, Dec. 1, against Southern Utah. The Aggies pulled off a last minute 70-68 defeat over the Thunderbirds, helping Trakh to earn the milestone victory. Trakh holds a 304-220 career record.
UNM: The Lobos swept the Rio Grande Rivalry Series this season with a 60-37 win over the Aggies at The Pit on Nov. 20 and a 60-44 victory in Las Cruces on Dec. 18. In game one, the Aggies had trouble making shots, but kept the stats similar to the Lobos. The Aggies collected 44 rebounds on the evening with six assists and two blocks. The Lobos were quite similar to NM State with 43 boards, but tallied 16 assists on the evening. Game two finished in similar fashion with the Lobos claiming a 60-44 victory over NM State at the Pan Am on Dec. 18. The loss at home marked the first of the 2012-13 season. Sasha Weber led the Aggies with 10 points and three rebounds on the evening. The Aggies shot 30.4 percent from the floor but tallied eight steals as a team with 27 rebounds. Those stats were not enough to hold off the Lobos who finished the game shooting 47.5 percent from the field and picking up 42 rebounds on the night.
UTEP: NM State took game one of the Battle of I-10 rivalry series with a late game battle to a 69-68 win over the Miners. UTEP maintained the lead throughout most of the game, gaining as much as a 15 point lead in the first half, but Stefanie Gilbreath finished her first Battle of I-10 game with a stellar 22 points to collect a regular-season career high. She went 5-for-8 on three pointers and picking up eight rebounds to match her career-high. Sophomore Danesia Williamson also picked up a career-high with 23 points on the game with a solid 10-of-12 at the line. Game two was set to a different tune with the Miners running away early with the 66- 44 win over NM State in El Paso. The Aggies struggled on offense, scoring just 14 points in the first half of play. The second half was a bit more positive as Williamson collected 13 points in the half with two field goals and one three pointer. She was 6-for- 6 at the line with four rebounds. Jasmine Rutledge finished the game with 11 points on the evening and compiled nine points at the line to mark a new career best for the junior.
Tournament Champs: The New Mexico State Aggies claimed the Aggie Hotel Encanto Thanksgiving Classic tournament title with a stellar 50-44 win over UC Irvine on Saturday evening at the Pan American Center. The previous night, the Aggies claimed a 55-52 win over the Patriots of George Mason. With the 2-0 record on the tournament, NM State's Kelsie Rozendaal and Sasha Weber were named to the All-Tournament team. Rozendaal was also selected tournament MVP for her work on the hardwood.
Trakh Signs Five to NLI: Head coach Mark Trakh announces that five high school players have signed National Letters of Intent to join the Aggies in the fall of 2013. Trakh is in his second season with NM State and has led the Aggies to a 1-0 start to the 2012-13 season. Joining the Aggies in 2013 are Tamera Williams of Centennial High School (Las Vegas, Nev.), Brianna Freeman of Harker Heights High School (Killeen, Texas), Vanessa Garner of Archbishop Mitty High School (Milpitas, Calif.), Moriah Mack of Reagan High School (San Antonio, Texas), and Brandee Walton of St. Mary's High School (Phoenix, Az.)
Last Season: Under the helm of first-year head coach, Mark Trakh, the Aggies finished the 2011-12 season with a 6-24 overall season record. This left NM State with a 3-11 Western Athletic Conference record. The Aggies made an appearance at the WAC Championships at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. (3/7). The Aggies were seeded eighth in the tournament but were quickly booted out by No. 1 66-58 State. Senior guard Tabitha Wampler was the most recent Aggie to join the 1,000 Point Club with a career 1,254 points (2008-12). She joins former teammates Danisha Corbett and Madison Spence along with Aggie great Anita Maxwell (2,601) and Andrea Kabwasa (1,788). Another highlight for the Aggies in 2011-12 was coach Trakh coaching his 500th game of his career as a Division I head coach. In his 17th year on the sidelines, the floor general notched the milestone against Hawai'i in Las Cruces Feb. 16.
-- The 2012-13 season marks the 40th season of Aggie women's basketball. The first season was 1973-74.
-- This season also marks 25 years since the Aggies last NCAA tournament appearance. The 1987-88 team was the last in program history to receive an NCAA berth.
Potential Milestone: With 12 total wins this season, NM State will make its 600th victory in program history. With the current 9-9 record, the Aggies sit at 596-533 all-time.