The Daily Aggie :: 12/05/10

First off, we offer our condolences to Marvin Menzies and his family. Coach Menzies lost his father on Friday but made the decision to coach the game last night. There is not a single person that would have begrudged him had he chosen not to be on the bench last night.

What an agonizing loss last night for the Aggies. First, credit where credit is due. The Aggies trailed by 17 points with a little over nine minutes left in the first half. It was looking like a repeat of last year's first half effort against the Lobos where the Aggies trailed 41-18 at halftime. But this time the Aggies started playing solid defense, hit a few shots and went into halftime down by just five points. That was one of the keys we discussed yesterday. Keep it a game at halftime.

Second, Gordo Castillo deserves a ton of credit for keeping the Aggies in the game in the second half of the second half. He scored all 11 of his points in the final 8:30 of regulation and made three plays that quite frankly he hasn't done much of in his career. The first play was the steal, juke move and layup. Gordo isn't really known for his defense nor is he exactly known for his shiftiness. He displayed a little of both on this play. Second play, he nailed a little 12 to 15 foot jumper after grabbing a rebound off a missed layup from Christian Kabongo. That gave the Aggies their first lead of the game. Third play was of course his game-tying shot from about 18 feet out. It reminded us a lot of the jumper that Hernst Laroche hit last year to win the game against Louisiana Tech.

Unfortunately, the Aggies hit just one shot in overtime and they were playing shorthanded to start the game and played even shorter handed late in the second half as the fouls (many of them horrendous calls) piled up for the Aggies. Tshilidzi Nephawe fouled out with 10:59 left in regulation, Hernst Laroche fouled out with 5:06 left in regulation and Christian Kabongo fouled out with 41 seconds left in regulation. UNM's A.J. Hardeman fouled out with 3:21 left in overtime.

Third key and this was the big one we discussed yesterday. Three point shooting. While neither team shot a high percentage, the Lobos threw it up 24 times from three point distance hitting nine. The Aggies hit five threes. If you go back and read yesterday's post, UNM was averaging 8.8 three pointers made per game in the five previous Aggie losses while the Aggies were averaging 6.4. The three ball ended up playing a big factor in the game. Two Phillip McDonald threes in overtime doomed the Aggies and the Lobo threes always seemed untimely for the Aggies.

The Aggies will get one final crack at a rivalry victory next Saturday when they invade The Pit and try to win in Albuquerque for the first time since 2002.

The Aggie women's basketball team hosts winless Cal State-Northridge today at 1:00 p.m. The Aggies are looking to bounce back from a very lackluster performance against New Mexico. Northridge is winless on the season and the Aggies need to look past the record and avoid a letdown today. The Aggies will be playing without Madison Spence again today. Spence is still recovering from a concussion and her return date is still unknown.

The Matadors have three very capable scorers in forward Vlolet Alama, center Jasmine Erving and guard Janelle Nomura. Alama has scored 20, 16 and 32 this season, Erving has scored 15, 15 and 22 and Nomura has scored 24.

The Aggies will need to make sure that the three of those do not finally put together a strong performance at the same time. This is the final home game for the Aggies until December 22. The game can be heard on KSNM AM 570 with streaming audio available via Aggie Access (subscription required) and streaming video will be available via Aggie Access (subscription required).

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NM State vs. New Mexico Game Photos

NM State vs. New Mexico Game Photos

Aggie Rally Falls Short Again As Lobos Win Sixth Straight In I-25 Series, 84-78 In Overtime

Gordo CastilloThe Aggie men's basketball team lost 84-78 in overtime to in-state rival New Mexico on Saturday night. The overtime finish was the fourth game to end in overtime since 2000 but just the 13th in the series' 205 games with the Aggies falling to 6-7 in the overtime games.

The Aggies erased a 17-point first half deficit and a seven point deficit in the second half to force overtime. However, the Aggies would hit just one of 10 shots from the floor in overtime and could not overcome two three pointers by UNM's Phillip McDonald in the extra period.

Troy Gillenwater scored a career-high 32 points including 13 free throws in the loss. The Lobos' senior point guard Dairese Gary scored 19 points and was 11-of-14 from the free throw line. Aggie senior guard Gordo Castillo scored all 11 of his points in the final 8:30 of regulation including a jumper that tied the game with six seconds left sending the game to overtime.

With the game tied 9-9 five minutes in the Lobos would go on an 18-1 run over the next five and a half minutes to take a commanding 27-10 lead. However, the Aggies would slowly chip away. With four minutes left to play the Aggies trailed by 10 points but a pair of free throws by Troy Gillenwater sparked an 8-0 run that brought the Aggies to within two points at 37-35 with 1:46 left in the half. The Aggies would have the ball with the shot clock turned off looking for the last score of the half but point guard Hernst Laroche's dribble was stolen by Gary who would get a fast break layup to put the Lobos up 42-37 at halftime.  Continue Reading This Post >>

The Daily Aggie :: 12/04/10

The Aggie men's basketball team is back in action tonight against in-state rival New Mexico. The Aggies are hoping to carry some of the momentum from their near-comeback victory against UTEP on Tuesday night into tonight's game. The status for Hamidu Rahman will be a game-time decision according to head coach Marvin Menzies. Coach Menzies was pretty pleased with the production he got out of Hamidu's replacements against UTEP.

The Aggies are hoping to snap a five game losing streak to UNM. The Lobos come into the game with a 5-1 record with their lone loss coming to Cal. Thankfully for the Aggies, Roman Martinez has graduated. Martinez was a thorn in the Aggies' side the last three years and always seemed to knock down a back breaking three pointer or grab a critical rebound. This year the Lobos' top three point threats are Kendall Williams and Jamal Fenton. Williams is hitting 57.1 perent of his three point attempts, 8-of-14, while Fenton is hitting 10-of-26, 38.5 percent. The Aggies struggled defensively guarding the three point arc against UTEP in both games and allowed UTEP to hit 12-of-24 in the first meeting and 7-of-16 in the second.

In fact, in the last five games Aggie/Lobo games, UNM has averaged 23 three point attempts against the Aggies and has hit nearly nine threes per game against the Aggies in those five games and has made no less than eight in each of the five. At the same time, the Aggies have not shot well from three against the Lobos hitting just 6.4 threes per game. That's almost nine points per game that the Aggies are giving up to the Lobos in the three point category. The margin of victory in those five games? It's 11.4 points. The three point line will likely again play a big factor in tonight's game. The Aggies cannot let the Lobos get hot from downtown.

Also of utmost importance is for the Aggies to actually be in the game at halftime. Last year the Aggies trailed 41-18 at halftime in the game in Las Cruces and 52-36 in the game in Albuquerque.

Troy Gillenwater will almost certainly be the focal point for the Lobos on defense. Where will the other points come from tonight? Someone else needs to step up for the Aggies. Hernst Laroche needs to have a spectacular floor game tonight. He needs to limit his turnovers in this game. He's averaging 2.7 turnovers per game, up a full turnover from last year's average.

Gordo Castillo needs to step up. His seven points per game are not enough for a senior leader. His teammates need to get him more shots and he needs to hit them. He went 4-for-13 against UTEP in the two games and he is that third scorer that the Aggies desperately need to keep some of the pressure off Troy Gillenwater. If Gordo has a big game tonight, we think the Aggies will end the five game losing streak.

Tonight's game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. tipoff. The game can be seen on AggieVision and will also be available online via Radio coverage is also available via the Aggie Sports Network.

Tonight is also Crimson & White night at the Pan Am. See the seating chart below and wear the appropriate color based on your seats.

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AggieVision :: 2010 NM State Top Ten Plays

Nine NM State Football Players Earn Phil Steele Postseason Honors

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - Defensive back Davon House earned first team honors in the Phil Steele’s 2010 Postseason All-WAC team. House was the lone Aggie on the first team this season but eight of his teammates also garnered honors.

Kick returner Taveon Rogers and place kicker Tyler Stampler earned second team honors, while tight end Kyle Nelson, center Mike Grady and linebacker B.J. Adolpho were placed on the third team. Fourth team honors went to running back Kenny Turner, wide receiver Marcus Allen and safety Donyae Coleman.

House ended his career with NM State ranked sixth all-time in interceptions for a career with 11 and first in interception return yardage with 319. He returned three interceptions for a touchdown in his career, tallying 198 tackles, 46 pass break ups and three fumble recoveries. In 2010, House led the team with two interceptions, 57 tackles and 10 pass break ups.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 12/02/10 Your thoughts on the team's play on Tuesday night playing without Hamidu you were still right in the game at the end.
Marvin Menzies: Playing without Ham I was really concerned about the center position and not having a lot of depth there but B.J. West came in and gave us quality minutes. Abdoulaye came in and gave us good minutes. So we were doing okay, probably not as productive as we could have been with Hamidu but nonetheless we were in a battle and we just ran into a buzzsaw named Randy Culpepper once again. It seems like they've always got one guy, no matter who we lace them up with they have that one guy that really does a good job against us and that was the case again. The Aggies had a big rebounding advantage in both games.
MM: I felt it was a big sticking point for us. We talked about it a lot and practiced on it a lot trying to improve our rebounding based on our road losses and we added some drills and emphasis in practice and I'm glad to see they responded. We just didn't get it done in two other statistical categories in terms of our three point defense and the final score.  Continue Reading This Post >>

The Daily Aggie :: 12/02/10

The Aggie women's basketball team lost last night 58-49 to New Mexico. The Aggies were within two points midway through the second half but just couldn't find the bottom of the bucket. They only scored four baskets in the second half and when that happens, you're not going to beat many teams.

We will say that this is probably the worst New Mexico team we've seen in the last 10 years and that's not meant to be disrespectful to the Lobos. They're usually a high-caliber basketball team but last night they looked ordinary.

Had the Aggies been able to hit shots last night, the Aggies would have won that game. The Aggies struggled without Madison out there and the three guards that are trying to pick up the slack simply did not have it last night. Jasmine Lowe went 1-of-7 from the field and finished with just three points. She averages over 15 per game. Kaitlyn Soto went scoreless on an 0-for-5 night. She usually is good for four or five points. Andrea Chenier, a true freshman, hit two free throws but was 0-for-3 from the floor.

It was not all gloom and doom for the Aggies last night. Danisha Corbett tied a career-high with 22 points and the Aggie defense forced 23 UNM turnovers. Unfortunately for Corbett, she didn't have much help and the Aggies also committed 20 turnovers.

This is definitely one of those games where we can honestly say the Aggies beat themselves. The Aggies are back in action on Sunday when they take on Cal State-Northridge.

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NM State vs. UNM Game Photos

NM State vs. UNM Game Photos
NM State vs. UNM Game Photos

Corbett Scores Career-High 22 Points But Aggies Fall To New Mexico 58-49

Danisha CorbettTim Barnett-Queen's Game Photos
Rich Chavez's Game Photos

The New Mexico State women's basketball fell to in-state rival New Mexico 58-49. The Aggies trailed by just three points at 47-44 with 8:32 left to play but would only score five points the rest of the game. Danisha Corbett scored a career-high 22 points hitting five three point shots.

The Aggies hit the game's first basket as Corbett hit the first of her five three pointers to give the Aggies a 3-0 lead. The Lobos would get a basket from Tina Doughty to make the game 3-2 with 18:38 left in the first quarter. The two teams would struggle offensively with each scoring just eight points through the first six and a half minutes. Lauren Taylor would hit a three pointer for UNM to put them ahead 11-8 with 13:34 left to play in the half but the Aggies would go on an 8-0 run to take a 16-11 lead with 11:28 left in the half. The Aggies would hold a 22-19 lead with 5:48 left to play in the half after Andrea Chenier hit a pair of free throws.

New Mexico would take a one point lead at 29-28 after a layup by Jasmine Patterson but Danisha Corbett would answer with 39 seconds left to give the Aggies a 30-29 lead at the half.

The Aggies would start off the second half with a three pointer to take a 33-29 lead but New Mexico would go on a 6-0 run to take a 35-33 lead. The Aggies would get the lead back as Danisha Corbett hit another three to give the Aggies a 36-35 lead. The Lobos would take the lead for good on a pair of free throws by Lauren Taylor with 12:31 left. After an Aggie miss, Jourdan Erksine would get a layup to put the Lobos ahead 41-38. The lead would swell to seven points after a Jessica Kielpinski jumper gave the Lobos a 46-39 lead. The Aggies would answer with a 5-0 run to cut the deficit down to two potions at 46-44 with 10:08 left to play.  Continue Reading This Post >>