The New Mexico State Aggies enter the 2009-2010 season having been picked to finish 5th by the league's coaches and sixth by the media. Last season the Aggies struggled to a 9-22 overall record and finished 5-11 in conference play. However, those who followed the Aggies closely know that last season's struggles were due in large part to the team's youth movement. The Aggies had as many as three freshmen on the floor at any given time in the game. That youth and inexperience has given way to a squad that is one year older, battle tested and hungry to erase the taste of losing from last season. The Aggies are aiming to make it to the WAC Tournament finals for the fourth time in the past five seasons and end a lengthy postseason absence.
The Aggies' strength is at the guard position where they have one of the best and deepest backcourts in the league.
The guard position starts with preseason First Team All-WAC selection Madison Spence. Spence is undeniably the teams' heart and soul and is the most complete player on the team. "Madi is by far one of the top names and top players in the conference," said Aggie head women's basketball coach Darin Spence.
As a sophomore Spence battled through mononucleosis the entire season in addition to a food allergy that was not diagnosed until midway through the season. Despite those physical ailments, Spence led the team in floor time playing nearly 31 minutes per game. As a sophomore her efficiency dropped from her freshman season due to the lack of consistent scoring threats from her teammates. Spence, the team's best three point shooter, saw her three point shooting percentage drop to just 28 percent from the field as teams began to key in on her three point shooting as she finished the season hitting 37 three point attempts.
Her overall field goal percentage was comparable to her freshman season as she converted at a 38 percent clip hitting 146 field goals. She averaged 14.3 points per game which was fifth best in the WAC. She scored a season high 30 points in an 84-82 loss to Kent State early in the season in which she finished 8 of 15 from the field, 9 of 11 from the free throw line and dished out seven assists and grabbed five rebounds. "She's played at a high level here for two years," said Coach Spence. She showcased her versatility and high level of play in a victory over eventual league champion Fresno State when she nearly recorded a triple-double scoring 20 points, grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out nine assists. Continue Reading This Post >>