NMSU Volleyball Defeats Grand Canyon 3-1

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The New Mexico State volleyball team took down Grand Canyon in four sets on Saturday. The Aggies rallied to defeat the Lopes 19-25, 25-22, 25-22, 25-18 for their ninth-straight win at the Pan American Center.

"I'm really proud of a few players that played their hearts out today. But, I'm also very angry with the way we started the match," head coach Mike Jordan said. "We didn't follow the game plan at all. There were a ton of missed assignments and bad execution. Championship teams don't play that way and this team better figure that out fast. We're going to keep pushing, working and grinding and if we have to win ugly, we'll win ugly."

How It Happened

NM State (13-7, 5-2 WAC) battled for each point to start the match but the Aggies gave up a seven-point run to GCU (5-14, 0-7 WAC) to fall behind 16-9. New Mexico State tried to chip away at the Lopes lead but was unable to hold off Grand Canyon. The Aggie squad could not complete a comeback and fell in the first set 25-19.

New Mexico State looked to regroup in the second set and the Aggies went ahead by a pair of points early. NM State built on its advantage and led 15-10 at the media timeout. GCU charged back, cutting the Aggies lead to a point late in the set. New Mexico State continued to fight and closed out the second set with a block by Sasha-Lee Thomas to take the set 25-22.

The Aggies maintained a two-point lead over GCU in the beginning of the third set. As the match continued, NM State held a four-point advantage over the Lopes but Grand Canyon surged ahead 19-18. New Mexico State did not give up, reclaiming the lead late in the set and winning the third set 25-22.

In the fourth set, NM State went point-for-point with the Lopes but pulled away 17-13, forcing GCU to take a timeout. New Mexico State built on its advantage and led 20-14 with Kaylee Neal at the service line. The Aggies closed out the set by scoring the final two points to win 25-18.

By the Numbers

New Mexico State posted 58 kills while hitting .196 in the match. The Aggies recorded 56 assists and 62 digs as a team. Kassandra Tohm tallied 21 kills to lead all players. Natalie Mikels posted a team-high 27 assists while Briana Ainsworth recorded 25. Senior libero Ariadnne Sierra recorded a match-high 21 digs.

For their next match, the Aggies take on rival New Mexico in the Battle of I-25 on Monday, Oct. 16. First serve is scheduled for 6 p.m. (MT).