Oct. 13, 2009
LAS CRUCES, N.M. --- Lobo volleyball fans may see a lighter shade of Cherry being worn by the New Mexico volleyball team. The pink jerseys pulled out another big road win as UNM beat New Mexico State, 3-0 (25-18, 25-21, 25-23), ending a 10-match losing streak to NMSU and an eight-match losing streak in Las Cruces. UNM's last win in Las Cruces was Oct. 25, 1989. The win also gives UNM the lead in the 2009-10 Rio Grande Rivalry, 6-3.
"I am so happy for our team and our seniors," said Lobo head coach Jeff Nelson. "In the past five days, we went from struggling to knocking down two teams we have struggled with in recent years."
The Lobos (13-6, 4-3 MWC) took advantage of two immediate NMSU errors to start the match and gradually built a lead. The teams stayed close to 15-14 before kills by Lisa Meeter sandwiched a double block by Ashley Rhoades and Taylor Hadfield to build an 18-14 lead. NMSU picked up a point after a timeout, 18-15, but the Lobos got consecutive kills from Hadfield, Jade Michaelsen and Rhoades to build the lead to 21-15. A kill by Rose Morris finished the set, 25-18.
In the second set it was more of the same. A block and a kill by Rhoades put UNM up 2-0. The Lobos lead continued to grow throughout the set with big blocks and kills from many Lobos. Hadfield had a big kill at 7-3, while Anna Lehne had a block and another Lobo point for a 12-6 lead. The lead built to eight on a kill and a block by Rhoades, 15-7. A block by Lehne and Michaelsen kept the lead at eight, 18-10. With a23-18 lead, the Aggies rattled off three consecutive kills, 23-21. Two Aggie errors later the Lobos were up 2-0 going into intermission, 25-21.
The third set was tight the whole way. After swapping service errors, UNM had a 9-6 lead, the largest lead of the set. After a 13-11 lead on a kill by Michaelsen and block by Rose Morris and Lehne, the Aggies tied the score at 13. The score was tied five more times before UNM got a two-point lead on a block by Morris and Rhoades, 20-18. After a UNM timeout, the Lobos tied the set at 21 on a Meeter kill. UNM took the lead for good on a kill by Lehne and an Aggie error, 23-22. Hadfield finished the set with a big kill, 25-23.
Hadfield led the Lobos with 11 kills, followed by Rhoades with 10. Rhoades led the front row defense with seven blocks, while Michaelsen had six. Allison Buck led the back row defense with 14 digs.
Jade Michaelsen picked up her 2,635 assist in the first set to move into seventh place on the UNM all-time career assists list, passing former teammate Sarah Kwasigroch. Michaelsen finished up with 34 on the night and 2,659 for her career.
New Mexico returns to action on Saturday, Oct. 17 against UNLV. First serve is set for 1 p.m. at the Johnson Center.