Aggies Blow Out Oliver-less Spartans 78-53, Improve To 4-1 In WAC

The New Mexico State men's basketball team defeated an Adrian Oliver-less San Jose State 78-53 on Saturday night in the Pan American Center to improve to 4-1 in WAC play and 10-9 overall. Troy Gillenwater led the Aggies with 18 points and Christian Kabongo added 14 as the Aggies had no trouble with the Spartans.

Bandja Sy opened the game with a dunk and the Aggies jumped out to a quick 11-6 lead after a three pointer from Gordo Castillo, one of five he hit on the night en route to 17 points. The Aggies opened up a 22-9 lead with 11:21 left in the half after a Christian Kabongo three and back-to-back baskets from Troy Gillenwater gave the Aggies a 29-11 lead. The Aggies would push their lead to 20 points at 33-13 after a jumper from Tshilidzi Nephawe and would head into the halftime with a 35-18 lead.

The Spartans would make a run midway through the second half cutting the Aggies' lead to a dozen at 52-40 but back-to-back threes from Christian Kabongo and Gordo Castillo would push the lead back to 19 points and the Aggies would not be threatened the rest of the way cursing to the 25-point win.  Continue Reading This Post >>

The Daily Aggie :: 01/15/11

The Aggie men's and women's basketball teams are back in action tonight as they both face teams from California. The Aggie men tip off at 7:00 p.m. (MT) and face San Jose State. The Spartans picked up their first conference win on Thursday night against Louisiana Tech and did so without their top player, Adrian Oliver who sat out with concussion-like symptoms. His status is TBD for tonight's game and if he does not play it is a huge blow for the Spartans (and for basketball fans who like to see top notch players). It's good for the Aggies because they don't have to worry about defending one of the elite scorers in the league, however, this is still a team that just picked up a win without him.

Overall, the Aggies are the better team, they should win this game. They have the advantage at all five spots as well as better depth. If Oliver plays the Spartans have a fighting chance, without him, it will be tough for SJSU to hang with the Aggies.

Tonight's game can be seen on AggieVision, ESPN Full Court as well as ESPN3.com. Radio coverage is available via the Aggie Sports Network with streaming audio available via Aggie Access (subscription required).

The Aggie women's team is on the road at Fresno State. The Bulldogs are coming off a triple-overtime loss to Louisiana Tech on Thursday night and tonight's game will be Fresno State's third this week. Hopefully that will aid the Aggies in their attempt to pick up their first win at Fresno State since joining the WAC. The Aggies have not had much luck in Fresno with their closest loss coming in 2007, a 63-57 loss.

Fresno State is averaging 75.9 points per game this season while allowing 70.3. They've played a tough schedule with games against Oklahoma, TCU, Stanford and USC. In their three conference games this season, all three opponents have hung tough with the Bulldogs (with the Lady Techsters picking up the win). Utah State lost by 10 but led by two at halftime, Idaho was tied in the second half with Fresno State before an 18-0 Bulldog run did them in.

The Bulldogs are a decent free throw shooting team hitting 67.7 percent of their attempts. They're also a decent three point shooting team hitting 35 percent of their shots. They're led in scoring by Jaleesa Ross who is averaging 16.4 points per game. Hayley Munro and Rosie Moult are averaging 12.6 and 12.3 points per game respectively.

Ross is the shooter the Aggies most need to be aware of as she is hitting 42.3 percent of her three point attempts. Rosie Moult is also a solid three point shooter hitting 37.1 percent of her tries. Those two have combined to take 269 of the Bulldogs' 494 tries. Fresno State makes a whopping 10.2 threes per game, nearly 41 percent of the Bulldogs' point production.

If the Aggies can execute on offense, they can find success. Opposing teams have averaged 44.5 percent shooting against the Bulldogs. The Aggies need to avoid trying to get into a three point shooting contest with the Bulldogs and establish Tabytha Wampler's presence in the post.

If the game comes down to a free throw shooting contest, the Aggies have a decided advantage. Jaleesa Ross is just a 60.6 percent free throw shooter. Hayley Munro is the only starter to average above 70 percent at 70.9 percent.

Tonight's game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. (MT) tipoff. Radio coverage will be available via KSNM AM 570 in Las Cruces with streaming audio available via Aggie Access (subscription required).

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The Daily Aggie :: 01/14/11

The huge news of the day is that Aggie head soccer coach Michael Needham has accepted the same position at the University of Rhode Island, his alma mater. Needham guided the Aggies from the program's inception and guided the Aggies to a 9-9-1 record in their inaugural season and a 7-8-3 record in their sophomore season. We wish Coach Needham and family all the best at URI.

The Aggie men had no trouble with Hawai'i last night winning 82-64. The Aggies led by as many as 30 points in the second half and played very solid defense most of the game. The Warriors got hot toward the end of the game making the final score a little closer than the actual game was.

For the second straight game the Aggies were able to get a key play from the opposing team in foul trouble early. Last Saturday it was center Greg Smith, last night it was center Bill Amis.

The Aggies got a little scare from Troy Gillenwater who "tweaked" his ankle in pregame warmups and then sat out the first 14 minutes of the game. His absence illustrates his importance to the team. Without Gillenwater in the lineup, the Aggies led UH by just four, 25-21. With Gillenwater in the lineup the Aggies built as much as a 30-point lead.

The Aggies host San Jose State on Saturday night. The Spartans picked up their first victory of conference play beating Louisiana Tech, sans Adrian Oliver who sat out with concussion-like symptoms. Those symptoms could also keep him out of Saturday's game against the Aggies which would be a huge loss for the Spartans.

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BREAKING: Aggie Soccer Head Coach Michael Needham Headed To University Of Rhode Island

Written By: Rhode Island Athletic Dept.

KINGSTON, R.I. - Michael Needham has been named the seventh head coach in the history of the University of Rhode Island's women's soccer program, it was announced today by Director of Athletics Thorr Bjorn.

Needham, a 1996 graduate of the University Rhode Island, returns to Kingston after a two-year stint as head coach at New Mexico State in which he oversaw the start of the Aggies soccer program.

"We are very excited about having Michael Needham return to URI to lead our women's soccer program," said Bjorn. "He is a proven winner with a passion for URI soccer. I believe our women's soccer program should compete year-in and year-out for an A-10 championship and the NCAA tournament. I am very confident that Michael is the person that will be able to achieve those goals for the University of Rhode Island."  Continue Reading This Post >>

NM State vs. Hawai'i Game Photos

NM State vs. Hawai'i Game Photos

Aggies Blow Past Hawai'i 82-64; Improve To 3-1 In WAC Play

Troy GillenwaterThe New Mexico State men's basketball team cruised to an 82-64 victory over Hawai'i on Thursday night in the Pan American Center. The Aggies got a balanced offensive attack finishing with four players in double-digit scoring and three more players with at least seven points. The Aggies got a brief scare when Troy Gillenwater tweaked his ankle in pre-game warmups forcing him to sit out the first 14 minutes of the game.

The Warriors took advantage of the absence of Gillenwater and keep the game close trailing just 22-21 with 6:30 left in the half as Zane Johnson capped a 5-0 run with a three pointer. Hernst Laroche would bury a three pointer to answer giving the Aggies a four point lead and with 5:50 left in the half Gillenwater would make his first appearance in the game.

The Aggies, feeling a rejuvenation by the leader's presence, responded with a 15-4 run over the next three and a half minutes to take a commanding 40-25 lead. The Warriors would cut the lead to 13 on a layup by Vander Joaquim but Joston Thomas would miss an uncontested dunk that would have cut the Aggies' lead to 11 heading into halftime instead giving the Aggies a 40-27 lead at the break.

The Warriors' comeback hopes would take a blow early in the second half as senior center Bill Amis picked up his fourth foul with 17:21 still to play in the game. Without Amis on the floor the Aggies would extend their lead to 21 point with 11:54 left after a jumper from just inside the three point arc by Gordo Castillo.  Continue Reading This Post >>

AggieVision :: Aggie Academy :: Rebounding

The Daily Aggie :: 01/13/11

Tough loss last night for the Aggie women. The shots weren't falling and despite forcing nine or ten first half turnovers, the Aggies trailed by three at halftime. Jasmine Lowe scored the first five points of the second half and the Aggies led 32-30. From there the Wolf Pack went on a 14-2 run and the Aggies couldn't recover.

The key sequence came when the Aggies, trailing by four, played solid defense forced a shot from Nevada, which they missed, Madison Spence grabbed the rebound but when she came down, her foot was on the baseline. Instead of having the ball with a chance to cut the Wolf Pack lead to either two or one point, Nevada's Tahnee Robinson buries a three (three of her 25 points) and just like that the Wolf Pack are up by seven. Moments later, Johnna Ward buries her only trey of the night and the Wolf Pack are up by 10.

From there the Aggies would trail by 15 and eventually lose by 19. Yes, it was a disappointing night, not inasmuch that they lost but moreso in the fact that the Aggies weren't competitive in the second half, something that this team has been all season long. Yet, the Aggies are still 2-1 in conference and there are 13 more games to play. Nevada is a very, very good team (in fact, Charlie Creme at ESPN.com has Nevada, not Fresno State, not Louisiana Tech but Nevada as the WAC's representative in the NCAA Tournament in his latest Bracketology.

The Aggie men are back in action tonight against Hawai'i. The Warriors are a dangerous team. Heading into conference play they were one of the hottest teams in the WAC and yet here they sit, 0-4 in conference play. Hawai'i hung tough with Florida State, the very same Florida State team that upset No. 1 (and previously undefeated) Duke last night. They also defeated Utah and Mississippi State (albeit a shorthanded Bulldog team) but they won nonetheless.

The Warriors are nearly full strength again after getting senior big man Bill Amis back. The Warriors also feature a dangerous shooter in Zane Johnson, a transfer from Arizona. The Aggies will need to keep tabs on Johnson at ALL times.

Which Hawai'i team will show up tonight? The one that played well in the non-conference or the one that has scored an average of 58.5 points per game in conference play?

Tonight's (and Saturday's) game is very important for the Aggies in order to keep pace with the leaders. Idaho defeated Nevada last night to improve to 4-1 in league play. Utah State and Boise State have a showdown tonight for first place with the loser dropping into a tie with the other one-loss teams.

Tonight's game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. tipoff and can be seen on ESPN Regional, ESPN3.com and ESPN Full Court. Radio coverage is available on the Aggie Sports Network and streaming audio is available via Aggie Access (subscription required).

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