NM State Releases 2009-2010 Women's Basketball Schedule

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

View 2009/2010 Schedule

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - New Mexico State head women's basketball coach Darin Spence announced Monday the release of the 2009-10 schedule. The Aggies are slated to play a program record 18 home games during their seventh season under Spence and welcome Michigan and Kansas into the Pan American Center.


Also highlighting the non-conference portion of NM State's 30-game schedule are the home-and-away series with rivals New Mexico and UTEP and the third-straight year of the Aggie Hotel Encanto Thanksgiving Classic. The Aggies only have one true road trip before conference play, which comes in the first weekend of the season in Southern California.


The 18 scheduled regular season home games surpass the previous record of 17 that was set way back in 1979-80. NM State played 16 regular season home games in 2007-08, winning 14 of those en route to a 23-win season. This year also marks the 11th season that the Aggies have 15 or more home games. In the first 10 seasons with 15 or more home contests, NM State averaged 20 wins per year.

 
"I'm excited about our schedule and any time you can get 18 home games, that will be really good for us," Spence said. "We have some fun opponents coming in for the fans and the biggest thing with the 18 home games is that it will build a fan base and give the fans a chance to get behind the team.



"We have really good competition coming in with Kansas and Michigan and the North Dakota schools are good. Our non-conference schedule will definitely test us and get us ready for conference play."



After the 2008-09 season saw the Aggies play in 16 regular season road games, the Aggies only have 12 this year and eight of those come during conference play. Last season NM State went through a stretch from late December through January where 9-of-11 games were on the road, but this season the Aggies do not play more than two-straight away games.

"What we went through last year was tough, but it gave us the opportunity to learn a lot about ourselves," he said. "Obviously with this year and playing more home games we are trying to build confidence, but we will still be challenged, there is no question about that."

 
The Aggies kick off the season with that one and only true non-conference road trip out in California. It all starts Nov. 13 at Cal State Northridge and ends two days later at Cal Poly, where the Aggies are looking to avenge their loss to the Mustangs from last season.


Following the opening weekend, the Aggies have seven straight games at home that will take them through mid-December. Two of those games come in the Thanksgiving Classic where Michigan, Stephen F. Austin and Southern Illinois-Edwardsville are all coming to Las Cruces. New Mexico State squares off against the Wolverines and SIU-E in the tournament. This will be just the second game between Michigan and New Mexico State, as the two schools met on a neutral court in 1999.



Right after the Aggies host their tournament, NM State welcomes in New Mexico (Dec. 2) in the first of two meetings in the month. The last game of the seven-game home stand is Dec. 15 against I-10 rival UTEP. In 2008 the Aggies ended a seven-game losing streak to the Miners with a 10-point win at home over UTEP. 



The third of four non-conference road contests comes Dec. 20, when NM State heads up I-25 to play the Lobos for the second time. New Mexico State has not won in Albuquerque since 1995. 


The Aggies then have three more games before the turn of the New Year. They host Alcorn State (Dec. 22) and New Mexico Highlands (Dec. 30) with the return game at UTEP (Dec. 28) sandwiched in between.



New Mexico State's final non-conference game of the year lies on Jan. 3 at home against Kansas. The Jayhawks return eight players and four starters from their 2008-09 team that reached the finals of last years WNIT.



Conference play for the Aggies opens up Jan. 6 at Boise State, where the Aggies are still looking for their first win against the Broncos on their home court. Four of the remaining six games in the month of January come at home and the last is against Nevada, Jan. 30. NM State has won four-straight against the Wolf Pack at home. The three other home games in that stretch are Hawai'i (Jan. 9), Fresno State (Jan. 13) and Idaho (Jan. 20).



The halfway point of the conference slate begins in February with a road game at San Jose State, Feb. 3. The Aggies have won six-straight over the Spartans, which is their longest winning streak over any WAC opponent. After visiting the Silicon Valley, NM State returns home to host Boise State, Feb. 6. The Aggies have won two out of the last three against the Broncos at home, with the only loss coming in overtime last year.



After that New Mexico State hits the road for its second and final two-game road swing of the season. The first of the two games is Feb. 10 at Hawai'i and second leg is Feb. 13 at Fresno State. NM State has won 3-of-4 at Hawai'i since joining the WAC, which ties for its best road record against any of the league schools (the Aggies are also 3-1 at San Jose State).



Feb. 17 the Aggies return home to host Louisiana Tech, but head to Moscow, Idaho for a Feb. 20 game. The last game in February comes on the 24th at home against Utah State. 



The final regular season road game is the first in the month of March. That's when NM State heads to Reno, Nev. to face the Wolf Pack. Then the last game of the regular season comes at home on March 6 where New Mexico State hosts SJSU on senior night.



For the second straight season, the WAC Tournament is being held in Reno at the Lawlor Events Center. After being knocked out in the first round last season, the Aggies are looking to get back into the finals where they appeared three straight years from 2006-08.