No. 23 Aggies Fall To No. 11 Oregon in Season Opener 3-1

Written By: NMSU Athletic Dept.

CHAMPAIGN, IL. - The No. 23 New Mexico State volleyball team had some chances on the afternoon but fell 3-0 (25-19, 25-23, 22-25, ) to No. 11 Oregon at the State Farm Illini Classic in Champaign, Ill., Friday, Aug. 29.

Senior Lindsey Yon (San Antonio, Texas) led all players with a match-high 17 kills and freshman setter Jennah DeVries (Denver, Colo.) had a team-high 25 assists. Head coach Mike Jordan knew his team had chances to pull off an upset but there were too many errors on the afternoon.

"We were too error prone today," Jordan said. "Oregon is a very good team and very experienced and took care of the ball when it counted. That’s the difference in the match."

NMSU committed 10 service errors and 26 attack errors compared to the Ducks’ five service errors and 15 attack errors. On the positive side for the Aggies, senior Amber Simpson (Quincy, Ill.) hit .474 with 10 kills on 19 attempts with only one error.

"We did a lot of good things today and am proud of that," Jordan said. "I’m excited about how good we could be, we just need to get rid of the errors."

Defensively Krystal Torres (Las Cruces, N.M.) led the Aggies with 16 digs and Simpson had three total blocks in the match.

The Aggies went back and forth with Oregon with five ties before NMSU was the first team to double-digit points and took a 10-8. After the Aggies went up 11-8, Oregon went on a 4-0 run to take a 12-11 lead. NMSU tied the game at 12 before the Ducks went on 10-4 run to go up 22-16. The Aggies got to within three on a service ace by Yon, but Oregon pulled away to win the first set 25-19.

The Ducks took the an early 4-0 lead before head coach Mike Jordan was forced to call a timeout, which seemed to work well for NMSU as it scored its first point of the set. The Aggies pulled to within one point at 9-8 on a kill by Yon. After a couple of bad breaks for NMSU, the Ducks went up by four again at 16-12. After a kill by Simpson, an ace by Torres and an error by the Ducks NMSU tied the game at 17. Torres came up with two more aces to give the Aggies a 19-17 lead. The set was tied for the fourth time when Oregon scored its 21st point before going on a 4-2 run to wrap up the second set 25-23.

NMSU came out of the intermission on fire and took a 10-4 lead, the largest lead of the match for the Aggies. When Oregon committed an error to fall behind the Aggies 17-11, the Ducks’ coached called a timeout. Out of the timeout, Oregon scored six straight points to tie the set at 17 all. After the set was tied again at 18, the Aggies scored three straight points, which included two kills by Yon and an ace by DeVries. Kelli Goodan (Des Moines, N.M.) closed out the game with a monstrous kill to give the Aggies the third set win at 25-22.

NMSU fell behind early, but Yon’s 14th kill of the afternoon got the Aggies to within one at 7-6. Oregon then went on 9-3 run to go up 16-9. NMSU fell behind by as many as nine points and ended up losing 25-17.

The Aggies will play match two of the State Farm Illini Classic against host team, Illinois in Huff Hall in Champaign, Ill., Saturday, Aug. 30 at 9:00 a.m. (MST). The match will be broadcast on the radio KSNM AM 570 while it can also be heard on the internet at www.nmstatesports.com for a fee. Live stats are also available on the NMSU Athletics website for free.