The Daily Aggie :: 08/11/10

The New Mexico State men's basketball team picked up a pair of exhibition victories on their summer tour in Canada yesterday. They edged out an 80-76 victory over McGill University and then coasted to an 88-57 victory over Vanier.

Gordo Castillo led the Aggies in the first game with 21 points, 16 in the second half while Bandja Sy led the Aggies in the second game with 21 points, 17 in the first half. Gordo added 15 in the second game and B.J. West scored 16 in the second game.

That's good news for the Aggies who will have to replace the 40-plus points per game that walked out the door at the end of last season with the departures of Jonathan Gibson and Jahmar Young. Add in the fact that Troy Gillenwater did not play (and will not be playing due to injury) nor did Wendell McKines (passport must not have arrived in time?) and at least early on it looks like the Aggies might not miss a step in the scoring department.

While we're on the subject of basketball, as we suspected, the WAC men's basketball schedule is complete and we're just waiting on an official release by New Mexico State. However, we do have a couple of dates for you to circle on your calendar. The Aggies will play Nevada on Thursday, January 28th in Reno and then they'll host Nevada on Saturday, March 5th (what appears to be the final game of the regular season). That should make for an interesting Senior Night game.

We just wrapped up writing our WAC Summer Check-In article (should be posted in the next few days) for our friends at Rush The Court and one of the things that really stood out is the huge turnover in talent league-wide. Louisiana Tech loses it's top three scorers and rebounders, Fresno State lost an NBA lottery pick (plus dismissed their best point guard), Nevada lost two NBA draft picks plus a couple other seniors all of whom accounted for almost 85 percent of the Pack's scoring, Idaho loses their entire starting five from last year, Boise State is breaking in a new coach in Leon Rice, same for Hawai'i plus they lose their best player in Roderick Flemings. Utah State became the defacto favorite because they only lose one starter from last year's squad, Jared Quayle (though, they'll pay the piper in 2011 when they have to replace have their roster). New Mexico State would have likely been the top preseason pick but losing Jahmar Young along with Jonathan Gibson, almost half their point production from last season, knocks them down a peg. San Jose State returns the arguably the best player in the league in our opinion and certainly the best scorer in the league in Adrian Oliver.

A very very very early assessment leads us to believe that it's Utah State, New Mexico State in the upper tier of the WAC and then it's essentially a Pick 'Em from spots three through seven (though Nevada always seems to find a way to restock).

Aggie volleyball practice is underway as the team is going through two-a-days. We spoke with head coach Mike Jordan yesterday and we're putting together our annual volleyball preview (hopefully publishing it next week). We also spoke with senior Whitney Woods, one of three seniors on the club along with Kayleigh Giddens and Brynja Rodgers (Brynja must sit out this season after transferring back to New Mexico State from Florida) who is very confident heading into her final season. Be sure to check out our feature story on Whitney.

On to today's links...  Continue Reading This Post >>

Hard Work Drives Whitney Woods To The Top Of Her Game

Whitney WoodsThe date was November 25th, the location Las Vegas, Nevada. Amidst the celebration by the Hawai'i volleyball team and their fans and the consolation of the New Mexico State players by their teammates and parents, Whitney Woods sat alone quietly in the first row in the stands behind the Aggie bench staring off in the distance. Her team had just lost the WAC Tournament championship match to Hawai'i, one of three losses to the Final Four bound Wahine last season.

Losing is never any fun. Losing to Hawai'i in the championship match of the WAC Tournament is even less fun. For Woods, this loss was a little tougher to take. "I took it hard because I knew we were able to beat them. No doubt about it," said Woods. "There were just plays in the game where we let our guard down and let them get in our heads."

Nearly nine months later, Woods enters the 2010 season as one of three seniors on the Aggie volleyball team and was named to the WAC's preseason All-Conference team along with with her teammates Kelsey Brennan, Jennah DeVries and fellow senior Kayleigh Giddens.

The preseason All-Conference pick should come as no surprise to anyone that's watched Woods play the past two seasons, however, for Whitney the metamorphosis into an All-Conference right-side attacker didn't happen overnight.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Hoops Coasts To 88-57 Win Over Vanier

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

MONTREAL, QUEBEC -The New Mexico State men’s basketball team concluded the first day of action on its preseason tour in Canada with an 88-57 victory over Vanier College at Dawson College in Montreal, Quebec.

Sophomore guard Bandja Sy scored a game-high 21 points for the Aggies. Sophomore forward/center B.J. West contributed 16 while senior guard Gordo Castillo had 15 points. Sophomore forward Tyrone Watson and junior center Hamidu Rahman were both in double-digits with 13 and 10, respectively. Playing in his hometown for the first time in an Aggie uniform, junior guard Hernst Laroche scored eight points against his former team. Guard Damon Buckley led Vanier with 13 points while forward Kazadi Gauthier scored 11.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Hoops Wins Preseason Tour Opener

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

SAINT LAMBERT, QUEBEC - The New Mexico State men’s basketball team opened its preseason foreign tour in Canada with a 80-76 win over McGill University on the Champlain campus in Saint Lambert, Quebec. Senior guard Gordo Castillo paced the Aggies with a team-high 21 points.

The Las Cruces, N.M., native scored 16 second-half points to power a solid second half effort for the Aggies. NM State had four other players in double-figures with junior center Hamidu Rahman and sophomore forward Tyrone Watson contributing 12 points each. Freshman center Tshilidzi Nephawe added 11 while junior guard Hernst Laroche scored 10 in his homecoming.  Continue Reading This Post >>

The Daily Aggie :: 08/10/10

Practices start this week for the Aggie football and volleyball teams. Plus the Aggie men's basketball team begins games on their Canadian tour as well.

The Carleton University athletic website previews their matchups with NCAA Division I opponents including the Aggies.

Jason Groves of the Las Cruces Sun-News talks with Coach Jordan and a few players about the volleyball team's competition for playing time.

With all the focus on incoming JUCO All-American running back Kenny Turner, Aggie opponents should definitely not forget about returning starter Seth Smith. Smith rushed for just over 1,000 yards last season. Wade Denniston of the Logan Herald-Journal talks about the former walk-on's leap into the starting role.

Don't forget that the Aggie women's soccer Kick-Off Party is on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at The Game Sports Bar and Grill in Las Cruces. The cost is $20 per person.

Follow on Twitter: @AgsBleedCrimson and become a fan on Facebook

If you've found an article that you think other Aggie fans would like to read, send it to us! Select "The Daily Aggie" from the 'Category' drop-down.

The Daily Aggie :: 08/09/10

Geoff Grammer of the Santa Fe New Mexican has a great piece on Aggie running back Kenny Turner.

The Aggie football team opens up fall practice on Wednesday at 3:00 p.m. and are open to the public.

The full fall camp practice schedule can be viewed here.

The Aggie men's basketball team headed to Canada yesterday and Jason Groves has posted the Aggies' schedule of games on his blog.

Jason also has a feature on Hernst Laroche and his growth in becoming a leader for the Aggies.

You can follow the Aggies' Canadian trip on Twitter (@NMStateAggies).

Follow on Twitter: @AgsBleedCrimson and become a fan on Facebook

If you've found an article that you think other Aggie fans would like to read, send it to us! Select "The Daily Aggie" from the 'Category' drop-down.

The Daily Aggie :: 08/07/10

The Aggie volleyball team will appear on television a total of eight times this coming season. New Mexico State announced yesterday that seven matches will appear on AggieVision and one match, the Aggies' home date against Hawai'i, will be broadcast by ESPNU. Among the seven matches on AggieVision this season are the non-conference match with Arizona as well as the Aggies' road match against Hawai'i.

The Aggies' Alumni Match is two weeks from today, August 21st at 7:00 p.m. in the Pan American Center. The Aggies' kick-off banquet is a couple days later on Tuesday, August 24th at 6:30 p.m. at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum. See Mel's post for more reservation details for the banquet.

The 2nd Annual Marvin Menzies Open will be held on September 2nd at Picacho Hill Golf Course in Las Cruces. It's a four person scramble and the entry fee is $200 per person. You can download an entry form here.

Coach Menzies stopped by the News New Mexico radio show yesterday to talk about his fundraiser (interview begins around the 18 minute mark).

And late this week the WAC made an official announcement about the format changes to the WAC Tournament. The NM State athletic website has quotes from Coach Menzies as well as women's basketball head coach Darin Spence.

On to today's links...  Continue Reading This Post >>

Can You Feel It In The Air?

Ahhhhhhh...August in the Mesilla Valley. It's an exciting time - green chile will soon be roasting, kids are heading back to school and...what's that I see on my calendar? AGGIE VOLLEYBALL!!

Kicking things off is the annual Alumni Game on August 21st at 7pm at the Pan Am Center. It's always fun to see the alums come back and show our current players a thing or two as well as catch up with what they've been doing with their lives.

The following Tuesday, August 24th is the Annual Pre Season Banquet at the Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum. The social hour begins at 6:30pm, followed by dinner at 7:30pm. The cost is $35 per person or a table for $400 that includes seating for 8 folks and 2 student athletes. You can reserve now by emailing Felicia McCracken at or calling Tricia Wright at 646-7714. It's always a fun event.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Soccer Picked To Finish 8th In Preseason Coaches Poll

Written By: WAC Media Relations

DENVER, CO - Utah State has been selected as the favorite for the 2010 Western Athletic Conference season as determined by a vote by the league’s nine head coaches. The 2010 WAC preseason all-conference soccer team and Players of the Year were also announced as voted on by the league’s head coaches.

Utah State placed second last season in the WAC with a 5-2-1 regular season record. The Aggies received three first place votes for 59 points. Utah State returns 16 letterwinners, including eight starters from last year’s squad. Boise State was voted to finish second, receiving six first place votes with a tally of 58 total points. The Broncos won the 2009 WAC Tournament championship. Last season’s regular season champion, San Jose State, received 40 points to place third.  Continue Reading This Post >>

ESPNU To Televise NM State vs. Hawai'i Match In Las Cruces; Match Moved To Sept. 29th

The Aggies' match against Hawai'i in Las Cruces will be televised by ESPNU and as a result, the match date has been moved from Friday, October 1st to Wednesday, September 29th. The match time has also been changed from 7:00 p.m. MT to 8:00 p.m. MT.

ESPNU will televise four other WAC matches this season including the WAC Tournament championship match on Wednesday, November 25th from The Orleans in Las Vegas, NV.

Wednesday, Sept. 29 - Hawai’i at New Mexico State - 8 p.m. (MT)
Wednesday, Oct. 6 - Utah State at Idaho - 7 p.m. (PT)
Thursday, Oct. 21 - Hawai’i at Idaho - 8 p.m. (PT)
Monday, Oct. 25 - Hawai’i at Utah State - 8 p.m. (MT)
Wednesday, Nov. 25 - WAC Tournament Championship Match - 6:30 p.m. (PT)