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Lobo Volleyball Prepares For Mountain West Tournament
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  11/18/2003
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

Nov. 18, 2003

Lobo Mountain West Tournament Guide in PDF Format
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Mountain West Tournament Bracket in PDF Format
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THIS WEEK IN LOBO VOLLEYBALL:

MOUNTAIN WEST TOURNAMENT -

TEAMS: No. 8 seed New Mexico (4-24, 1-13 MWC) vs. No. 1 seed Colorado State (24-4, 14-0)

WHERE: Peterson Gym - San Diego, Calif.

WHEN: Thursday, Nov. 20 - 4 p.m. PT

RESULTS: Live stats of all matches available at www.TheMWC.com. Recap available at www.golobos.com and www.TheMWC.com.

MOUNTAIN WEST TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE (ALL TIMES PACIFIC):

Thursday, Nov. 20 (Quarterfinals):

No. 2 Utah (18-7, 12-2 MWC) vs. No. 7 Wyoming (15-15, 4-10), 11 a.m.

No. 3 BYU (20-7, 10-4) vs. No. 6 Air Force (14-14, 4-10), 1:30 p.m.

No. 1 Colorado State (24-4, 14-0) vs. No. 8 New Mexico (4-24, 1-13), 4 p.m.

No. 4 San Diego State (17-13, 7-7) vs. No. 5 UNLV (11-16, 4-10), 7 p.m.

Friday, Nov. 21 (Semifinals): Matches on College Sports TV

Utah/Wyoming vs. BYU/Air Force, 4 p.m.

Colorado State/New Mexico vs. San Diego State/UNLV, 7 p.m.

Saturday, Nov. 22 (Championship): Televised live on Fox Sports Rocky Mtn., 7 p.m.

LOBOS FACE TOP-SEEDED COLORADO STATE IN MWC TOURNAMENT QUARTERFINALS - The New Mexico volleyball team will face top-seeded and 14th-ranked Colorado State in the quarterfinals of the Mountain West Tournament Thursday, Nov. 20 at 4 p.m. PT in San Diego, Calif. The Lobos, seeded eighth, finished the regular season with a 4-24 record and went 1-13 in Mountain West action. CSU (24-4, 14-0) became the first team in league history to go through the regular season undefeated in MWC play and heads into San Diego riding a 17-match winning streak.

The Lobos are 1-4 overall in the Mountain West Tournament. UNM won its first MWC Tournament match as a No. 5 seed in 1999 over Air Force, but has since lost four in a row. New Mexico fell to San Diego State 3-0 in the quarterfinals last year as a No. 7 seed.

Colorado State has already defeated the Lobos twice this season, including a 3-0 (30-11, 30-19, 30-18) win at Fort Collins in the last regular season match for UNM. The Rams limited the Lobos to just 20 kills and collected 9.5 team blocks. When the teams met in Albuquerque, New Mexico played stayed close against the conference's top team, but still fell to CSU in three games (30-22, 30-22, 30-27).

The Rams have won 14 straight matches over the Lobos, with New Mexico's last win arriving Nov. 12, 1994 in Albuquerque. The two teams have never faced in the Mountain West Tournament.

LOBO QUICK HITS -

* Senior Anna Reines set a school record with 36 kills last Friday, Nov. 14 at Wyoming. She is fifth in school history with 1,113 kills and fourth with 2,819 attempts. Reines is fourth in the MWC in kills (3.78 pg) and seventh in points (4.32 pg).

* Junior Monica Meihack, the starting setter, tallied a career-high 65 assists at Wyoming Nov. 14. She did not play in the last match at Colorado State.

* Junior defensive specialist Adah Burke is fifth in the MWC in digs with 2.94 per game.

* New Mexico established season highs for kills (76), assists (68) and total attempts (182) at Wyoming Nov. 14.

* The Lobos are third in the Mountain West in aces (1.80 pg). UNM set a season high with 16 aces in a win over UNLV Nov. 6, which was the fourth highest total in New Mexico history.

* The Lobos are 1-4 overall in the Mountain West Tournament.

LOBO UPDATE: UNM FALLS TO WYOMING AND NO. 15 COLORADO STATE - New Mexico lost its last two matches of the regular season at Wyoming and No. 15 Colorado State to finish 4-24 (1-13 MWC) heading into the Mountain West Tournament.

Anna Reines set a school record with 36 kills at Wyoming Friday, Nov. 14, but the New Mexico volleyball team still fell to the Cowgirls in four games. The Lobos lost game one 31-29, then came back to take game two 30-22 before falling in a heartbreaking third game, 42-40. The Cowgirls finished the match with a 30-28 victory in game four.

Reines also established a new career high with 69 total attempts in addition to her school record 36 kills. The previous best was 35 set by Tania Gooley on Nov. 6, 1993 vs. Colorado State. The senior also moved into fifth all-time in the UNM record books with 1,074 career kills. Reines hit .348 (36K-12E-69TA) for the match with eight digs.

Setter Monica Meihack also had a great match for the Lobos, setting a new career high with 65 assists to go along with nine digs and four aces. Chelsea Sondrup recorded her second double-double of the season with 10 kills and 10 digs, Adah Burke registered 22 digs and freshman Jennifer Heasty pounded 12 kills and hit .320.

The Lobos posted three season highs in the match (kills - 76; total attempts - 182; assists - 68), but still only managed to hit .225 as a team. Wyoming only countered with a .223 attack percentage, however, the Cowgirls registered 9.5 team blocks to the Lobos' 6.5. Amazingly, UNM collected more kills (76-66), assists (68-62), digs (62-58) and aces (10-5) than Wyoming.

On Saturday, Nov. 15, the 15th-ranked Colorado State Rams became the first team in Mountain West history to go through the regular season undefeated as they topped the New Mexico volleyball team in three games (30-11, 30-19, 30-18) at Moby Arena.

The Rams shut down the Lobos offensively, only allowing 20 kills and 17 assists. Sondrup led UNM with five kills and a block, Kelly Therkelsen produced four blocks and Adah Burke had 11 digs. A night after setting the school record with 36 kills against Wyoming, Anna Reines was limited to four kills and three blocks. Lindsay Smith gave regular starting setter Monica Meihack the night off and delivered a team-high 16 assists.

THE FIRST TIME AROUND: CSU HOLDS OFF UNM (Oct. 17) - New Mexico played one of its best matches of the season against the conference's top team Oct. 17 at Johnson Arena, but still fell to No. 20 Colorado State in three games (30-22, 30-22, 30-27). Anna Reines put down 12 kills and collected 14.5 points to lead the Lobos while Monica Meihack paced the offense with 23 assists. Chelsea Sondrup stuffed a team-high four blocks and Adah Burke was the top defensive player with eight digs.

The Lobos held several leads in the match against the Rams, including a late 20-19 advantage in the third game. UNM led by as many as four points in the game (18-14), but CSU went on a 9-3 run to make it 23-21. The Lobos tied the match at 23 on a Reines service ace, however, the Rams countered with a 7-4 run to close out the game at 30-27.

In the second game, the Lobos hit an impressive .379 against the MWC's stingiest defense - the only problem was that the Rams bested the Lobos with a .459 attack percentage. The game was once again close throughout as both teams traded points to open the game at 9-9. The Rams then slowly built their lead to nine points at 24-15. The Lobos trimmed the CSU advantage to five points at 27-22 on a kill by Meihack, but that's as close as they would get, as CSU rattled off the next three points for the win.

In the opening game, UNM surprised the nationally-ranked Rams by scoring the first three points of the match. CSU woke up to take a 10-5 lead, but UNM tied the match at 15. The Rams then built a three-to-four point advantage for most of the game before finishing off the Lobos with a 6-2 run to win 30-22.

AMAZIN' ANNA - Senior Anna Reines is the Lobo offensive team leader, pacing the team in kills (3.78 pg - tied for fourth in MWC) and points (410 - seventh in MWC).

Reines, a dominant outside hitter, polished her game in the offseason by participating on the USA Select Team at the Spring Cup in Brno, Czech Republic. The hard work has paid off, as she earned all-tournament honors at the Fresno State Invitational and the Comcast Lobo Invitational.

Some of her top performances this season include a school-record 36 kills and season-high 39 points at Wyoming Nov. 14; 26 kills and 30 points vs. UNLV Nov. 6; .364 attack percentage (10K-2E-22A) vs. New Mexico State Sept. 22; and 16 kills and career-high four block solos at New Mexico State Oct. 21. Reines collected her 1,000th career kill vs. UNLV and is fifth all-time at UNM with 1,113 kills and fourth with 2,819 total attempts. Her 36 kills against Wyoming also established a new career high and was the highest amount of kills for any Mountain West player in conference matches this season.

The Big Lake, Minn., native transferred from the University of Minnesota after one season and has been a presence on the court ever since for the Lobos. Reines led the team in attack percentage (.257) and kills (3.86 pg) last season. For her efforts, Reines became the first Lobo since 1998 to earn first-team all-conference honors.

SET ME UP - Junior setter Monica Meihack paces the Lobo offense, leading the team with 6.37 assists per game (ninth in MWC). Meihack played libero for eight matches (Sept. 12-26), and responded well to her position change as she earned top libero honors at the Albuquerque Marriott Lobo Tournament and improved UNM's digs per game from 7.86 to 12.44. But after tallying the second most assists in a Lobo season in 2002 with 1,249, head coach Kelley Sliva McKee decided it was time to put Meihack back into her normal position. Meihack recorded a career-high 65 assists in her last outing at Wyoming Nov. 14.

Freshman Lindsay Smith, a talented recruit who has the ability to set up a very up-tempo offense, filled in nicely when Meihack was at libero. Smith stepped up to the challenge, collecting over 30 assists in six of her eight starts, including a career-high 49 vs. Ohio. Smith started UNM's last match at setter and collected 16 assists.

BURKE NAMED TO ACADEMIC ALL-AMERICA DISTRICT VI TEAM - Junior Adah Burke was named to the Academic All-America District VI volleyball second team Nov. 12 as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Burke, who had the highest GPA in the district, boasts a 4.040 GPA in Mathematics.

Burke is the top defensive specialist for the Lobos, leading the team and ranking fifth in the Mountain West Conference in digs with 2.94 per game. She registered a career-high 23 digs at New Mexico State Oct. 21 and was named the top libero at the Comcast Lobo Invitational Sept. 6.

In order to be nominated for the CoSIDA All-Academic team, a student-athlete must be a sophomore in athletic and academic standing, have at least a 3.20 GPA and be a starter or important reserve on the team. Once nominated, a vote is taken by members of CoSIDA to determine who is named to the team.

ACES WILD - New Mexico is third in the conference in service aces with 1.80 per game. UNM posted a season-high 16 aces vs. UNLV Nov. 6, which was the fourth highest total in school history and highest amount for any MWC team this season. The Lobos currently have 171 aces for the season; the school record stands at 292 (1981).

BLOCK YOU VERY MUCH - Sophomore Chelsea Sondrup, who set the Lobo single-season mark for block assists (131) in her freshman campaign, is once again leading UNM in blocks this season. Sondrup has 68 blocks (four solo, 64 assists) and is second on the team in kills (215; 2.26 pg) and points (271). Sondrup has tallied two of UNM's four double-doubles this season (career-high 14 kills and 12 digs at New Mexico State Oct. 21; 10 kills and 10 digs at Wyoming Nov. 14).

Sondrup also set two UNM single-match block records against SMU Sept. 20, 2002 for blocks (14) and block assists (13). She currently has 205 blocks for her career.

THERKELSEN MAKING PRESENCE KNOWN - Freshman Kelly Therkelsen has had a solid start to her Lobo career this fall, ranking third on the team in kills (162) and fourth in points (206). Therkelsen was named to the Albuquerque Marriott All-Tournament Team after posting 29 kills and 17 digs in the the tournament, including a career-high 13 kills vs. Ohio. The Eagan, Minn., native is a very versatile player, as she also has 30 assists, 62 digs and 61 blocks.

HEASTY LEADS LOBOS AT THE NET - Jennifer Heasty leads the Lobo outside hitters and middle blockers in attack percentage and is second in blocks. She hit a career-high .786 (11K-0E-14TA) against BYU Oct. 2 and also hit .583 vs. rival New Mexico State. The Westminster, Colo., native collected a season-high 13 kills and 15.5 points at Air Force Sept. 26 in her first career MWC match. In the Comcast Lobo Invitational tournament-title game, Heasty racked up a career-high eight block assists to secure the win over Delaware.

WHITSON COMES ON STRONG IN SECOND HALF - After playing sparingly in the first half of the season, freshman Georgia Whitson has come on strong in the second half for the Lobos. Whitson is fifth on the team in kills (123; 1.71 pg) and points (147). She put down a season-high 12 kills vs. UNLV Nov. 6 to go along with 13 points and registered a season-high five blocks in her other matchup against the Rebels Oct. 11. Whitson is one of three Lobos from the state of New Mexico, hailing from Taos.

DOUBLE DUNSMOOR - Freshman Lauren Dunsmoor has collected two of UNM's four double-doubles in 2003. Dunsmoor collected 14 digs and 10 kills vs. Sacramento State Sept. 20 and tallied 12 digs and 12 kills in her first career MWC match Sept. 26 at Air Force. Unfortunately, the Lobos have been without her services the last seven matches due to an injury.

YOUNG GUNS - This year's Lobo squad features nine freshmen to go along with one senior (Anna Reines), two juniors (Monica Meihack, Adah Burke) and one sophomore (Chelsea Sondrup). Reines, Meihack and Sondrup all started last season for UNM. Eight of the nine freshmen have seen action thus far in the season.

The Lobos are the youngest team in the Mountain West Conference with nine freshman, three of whom start. BYU has seven freshman on its roster, while San Diego State and UNLV each have six.

LOBOS DEFEAT ALUMNI - The Lobo volleyball program welcomed back 13 former players for the annual Alumni Match Oct. 25 at Johnson Arena. In a controlled scrimmage with referees, this year's Lobos defeated the alumni three games to one in a competitve match.

LOBO SCOUTING REPORT - No. 14 COLORADO STATE RAMS (24-4, 14-0 MWC)

The Rams became the first team in Mountain West Conference history to roll through league play undefeated. Now, CSU is looking to extend its 17-match winning streak and win its second MWC Tournament title.

Colorado State has been dominant all season long. The Rams lead the MWC in hitting percentage (.260), opponent hitting percentage (.145), assists (15.02 pg), kills (16.46 pg) and service aces (1.97 pg).

Junior Katie Jo Shirley is tops in the MWC with a .418 attack percentage, while junior setter Melissa Courtney leads the league with 13.04 assists per game. The Rams feature a potent offense, with three players averaging at least three kills per game (Becky Sauer - 3.75; Katie Jo Shirley - 3.58; Tess Rogers - 3.40).

New Mexico was limited to a -.068 attack percentage in the last meeting against CSU and only hit .174 in the first meeting. Anna Reines has 16 kills vs. the Rams this season, but was limited to four in the second matchup. Chelsea Sondrup had nine kills and five blocks, Jennifer Heasty had 10 kills and Adah Burke had 19 digs in the previous two meetings against CSU.

On the flip side, the Rams have hit .297 and .282 against UNM, with Becky Sauer leading the way with 21 kills.

HEAD COACH - Tom Hilbert (Seventh year). Record at CSU: 188-40.

SERIES HISTORY - CSU leads, 27-20. The Rams have won the last 14 meetings over the Lobos, with UNM's last win coming Nov. 12, 1994 in Albuquerque. This season, CSU defeated UNM in three games in Albuquerque (30-22, 30-22, 30-27) and in Fort Collins (30-11, 30-19, 30-18).

CATCH THE MOUNTAIN WEST TOURNAMENT ON TV - This is the second straight year that matches will be broadcast back to each Mountain West Conference market, and the fourth straight year the MWC has televised the entire championship. Preliminary round matches can be seen on over-the-air and cable affiliates throughout the Mountain West Conference region. Saturday's title match will be televised live at 8 p.m. MT on Fox Sports Net (Rocky Mountain) with a coverage area including Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, as well as parts of Montana, Idaho, Kansas, Nebraska and Nevada. The telecast will also be available to a national audience on FSN to DirecTV subscribers. The semifinals and finals will air on CSTV via tape delay. The complete schedule, satellite coordinates and clearances are listed below.

In addition to television coverage, the Mountain West Conference will feature livestats for all rounds of the volleyball championship. Log on to www.themwc.com for up-to-the-minute action of the matches. Other championship information will be posted to the website regularly throughout the championship, including box scores, notes and recaps.

MOUNTAIN WEST TOURNAMENT TV SCHEDULE (all Pacific Time):
Thursday, Nov. 20
		#2 Utah vs. #7 Wyoming, 11 a.m. - MWC-TV
		#3 BYU vs. #6 Air Force, 1:30 p.m. - MWC-TV
		#1 Colorado St. vs. #8 New Mexico, 4 p.m. - MWC-TV
		#4 San Diego St. vs. #5 UNLV, 7 p.m. - MWC-TV

Friday, Nov. 21 Semifinal #1, 4 p.m. MWC-TV; CSTV* (delay - Sat.,Nov. 22 at 11 a.m.) Semifinal #2, 7 p.m. MWC-TV; CSTV* (delay -Sat., Nov. 22 at 1 p.m.)

Saturday, Nov. 22 Championship, 7 p.m. MWC-TV Fox Sports Net-RM (live); CSTV (delay - Mon., Nov. 24 at 6:30 p.m.)

*CSTV will also air semifinal replays later on Sat., Nov. 22

SATELLITE: Thursday-Saturday Galaxy 11C TR. 20 Downlink: 4100 V

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