Outside Hitters Step Up For NMSU

Written by: Felix Chavez/Sun-News Reporter

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - One of the key questions the New Mexico State Aggies had to answer heading into the 2007 was who would step up at outside hitter besides senior Anna Callis.
It seems that question has been answered. On Saturday night in the Crimson/White Intrasquad match, junior Lindsey Yon and sophomore Krista Altermatt proved more than capable of helping replacing stalwarts Alice Borden and Tanya Allen from last year's team.

Yon tallied 20 kills on the night, while Altermatt had nine kills and 17 digs in the Crimson's 28-30, 30-26, 31-29 victory at the Pan American Center.

Both players are recovering from injuries that slowed them down, Altermatt suffered a broken leg in high school and Yon is coming off a serious elbow injury in April.

Yon, a transfer from Texas A&M, thought her career was over in April after leaving the Big 12 school.

"(Coach) Mike Jordan called me in the summer and we made the transfer happen," Yon said. "No other schools had called me. I'm still trying to get over the elbow injury, I had two broken bones and a damaged ligament. I'm about 80 percent right now. I'm just trying to fit in and be consistent."

Altermatt played some as a freshman, but she expects more out of herself this season.

"I'm feeling good as well, I just want to help this team improve and get to where we need to," Altermatt said.

Saturday's scrimmage gave Jordan a peek into the improvement his team has made since fall practice started. The Aggies start the season next Friday against the University of Albany in the Northern Arizona Invitational.

"We've been a good defensive team in the past and I think we have a chance to be one again," Jordan said. "If we can keep the hitting percentage down by our opponents, we'll be fine. We've done a lot of good things in practice."

Added Altermatt: "Practice has gone well so far. We're growing as a team and we're developing a lot of depth. We have a lot of different players that can do different things."

The Aggies play three games at the NAU Tournament next Friday and Saturday before returning for a home match on Sunday night against Texas Southern. New Mexico State only plays three non-Western Athletic Conference matches at home, while playing in three non-league tournaments on the road.

Felix Chavez can be reached at fchavez@lcsun-news.com