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bleedCrimson.net :: Your Source for NMSU Aggies Sports News
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The Daily Aggie :: 09/19/10

By now you know the final score, 42-10 and unfortunately it was every bit the beating that the score indicates (it probably could have been worse but UTEP head coach Mike Price started pulling his starters and playing the second string).

UTEP had scored three touchdowns before the Aggie offense mustered a first down (the Aggies hadn't even gained enough yards in their first two drives combined to warrant a first down). When the Aggie offense finally got going, they looked good. They looked like the offense that scored on their second drive last week against San Diego State.

The Aggie defense struggled to get off the field all night long. UTEP converted six of their first seven third downs and also a 4th and 1. The Miners finished the night converting 9-of-17 third downs and as we noted yesterday, if the Aggie defense had a repeat performance of the San Diego State game on third down situations, it would be very tough to win the game.

The positives from last night? While there weren't many, the Aggie special teams played better than it did last week. Tyler Stampler hit a 31 yard field goal to essentially end the first half and the special teams blocked a field goal attempt by the Miners in the fourth quarter.

The offense put together two good second quarter drives, a nine play 63 yard touchdown drive and a 16 play 85 yard field goal drive. The Aggies' depleted offensive line also did not allow a sack the entire evening. The Aggie defense played well in the second quarter and combined with the offense, managed to trim a 21-point deficit down to a very manageable 11-point deficit by halftime.

It should also be noted that the Aggies' final drive of the game, the one in which they made it down to the Miners' 5-yard line. The replay really looked like Kenonte Howard landed with his toe inbounds before his heel hit the sideline on the third down pass in the endzone. We really thought it was a touchdown, unfortunately, the replay crew did not.

The Aggies have little time to regroup as they head to Lawrence, KS to take on a schizophrenic Jayhawk team. The Jayhawks lost 6-3 to FCS North Dakota State to open the season, then upset No. 15 Georgia Tech 28-25, then lost on Friday night to Southern Mississippi 31-16.

All-in-all it was a tough night for anyone wearing crimson.

The Aggie volleyball team fell 3-0 to Arizona yesterday afternoon. The Aggies hung tough with the Wildcats through about 16 points in the first two sets before Arizona pulled way. The Aggies pushed Arizona to extra points in the third set before falling 26-24.

Kayleigh Giddens and Jennah DeVries were named to the Arizona Invitational All-Tournament team.

The Aggies open up conference play on Thursday night against Louisiana Tech in Ruston. They'll then turn right around and face the Lady Techsters again on Saturday night in Las Cruces (the joy that is WAC scheduling).

Kelsey Brennan's status for the upcoming matches is still unknown, however, it sounds like the Aggies are going to take a cautious approach with their junior middle blocker in an attempt to make sure the ankle sprain does not turn into a lingering issue.

The Aggie soccer team is also back in action today as they wrap up their home non-conference slate against Lamar. The Cardinals fell 6-1 to UTEP on Friday night. The Aggies currently lead 1-0 at the time of this post. Cassie De Leon put the Aggies on the board in the 8th minute.

The match is being streamed live via Aggie Access (subscription required).

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

NM State vs. UTEP Game Photos

NM State vs. UTEP Game Photos

Aggie Football Falls 42-10 In The Battle Of I-10

Matt ChristianThe 88th renewal of the Battle of I-10 belonged to the Miners as UTEP would score on their first three possessions to take a 21-0 lead before the Aggies would even get their first first down. "We just played poorly," said head coach DeWayne Walker after the game. "We knew they were going to be explosive on offense, right now we have some major problems that we need to figure out. We're not a good enough football team right now to be be in a scoring fest."

The Aggies would win the coin toss and defer to the second half giving UTEP the ball first. The Miners would get the ball on their own 26 yard line and drive nine plays covering 74 yards en route to a 7-0 lead. Trevor Vittatoe would find Julio Lopez on 2nd and 10 from the Aggie 18 for the touchdown. The Miners converted on 3rd and 7 twice during the drive.

The Aggies would start their first drive on their own 22 yard line but would go three and out.

The Miners would return the Tanner Rust punt to the Aggie 48. The Miners would convert on 3rd and 5 to the Aggie 36. After a holding penalty put the Miners back to the Aggie 46, the Aggies would force UTEP into a 3rd and 5 on the Aggie 20. George Callendar would stop Vernon Frazier for a four yard gain forcing a 4th and 1 on the Aggie 16. The Miners would convert the 4th down. Three plays later the Aggies would covert a 3rd and 4 on the Aggie eight as Trevor Vittatoe found Donald Kemp for the 8-yard touchdown pass putting the Miners up 14-0 with 2:33 left in the first quarter.

The Aggies would start their second drive on their own 20 yard line and after a seven yard completion to Marcus Allen gave the Aggies 3rd and 3 on their own 27, Kenny Turner would rush for two yards coming up just short of the first down. Tanner Rust would punt the ball to the UTEP 31 where Marlon McClure would return it to the UTEP 44.

Two consecutive offensive holding penalties would back the Miners up to their own 24 giving them 1st and 30. The Miners would start the second quarter with a 3rd and 25. The Aggie defense appeared to get the stop as Trevor Vittatoe's pass attempt to Kris Adams fell incomplete, however, a defensive pass interference penalty was called on Jonte Green giving the Miners a first and 10 on their own 44. The Aggie defense would again force a 3rd and long as UTEP faced a 3rd and 13 situation but again the Aggie defense would allow a third down conversion down to the Aggie 14 as Trevor Vittatoe found Pierce Hunter for a 45 yard gain. The Aggie coaching staff would call a timeout to try to settle down the defense, however, the Aggies would come back on the field and were flagged for having 12 men on the field giving UTEP a 1st and 5 at the Aggie 9. Two plays later the Miners would find the endzone for their third score. The extra point by Dakota Warren gave the Miners a 21-0 lead just three minutes into the second quarter.  Continue Reading This Post >>

NM State Kachina Classic Photos

NM State Kachina Classic Photos

Aggie Volleyball Hangs Tough With Arizona But Falls In 3-0 Sweep

Desiree ScottStarting three freshmen against a veteran Arizona team on Saturday afternoon, the Aggies would come up short falling in three sets to the host Wildcats, 25-18, 25-19 and 26-24. The Aggies would battle closely with the Wildcats in the first two sets before Arizona would pull away in the later stages of each set. The Aggies led by two points at 23-21 in set three but could not overcome the Wildcats. "We had three freshmen out there, sometimes four against a good Pac-10 team, that's difficult right now but there was definitely some competition," said head coach Mike Jordan after the match.

The Aggie defense had no answer for Arizona's Tiffany Owens who finished the match with a match-high 22 kills on 30 swings with just one attack error and an astounding .700 hitting percentage on the left side. She added 12 digs and a service ace. "We didn't play very good defense in the first game, it was close for a long time but we didn't capitalize on some defensive opportunities," said Coach Jordan.

The Aggies' freshman middle blocker Desire Scott, playing in place of injured junior Kelsey Brennan, finished with nine kills on 11 swings and committed no hitting errors for an .818 hitting percentage.

It was the sixth loss in a row for the Aggies, their longest losing steak since losing six in a row in the 1999 season, head coach Mike Jordan's second season at the helm.  Continue Reading This Post >>

The Daily Aggie :: 09/18/10

The Aggie soccer team cruised to an 8-0 victory over the SWAC's Alabama A&M last night and in the process tied a school record for goals scored in a game, one they set against Prairie View A&M another team from the SWAC. Crystal Burns scored two goals, the first coming in just the second minute of the game. We're not 100 percent sure but we think it may be the earliest the Aggies have ever scored a goal in a non-exhibition game.

Burns' second goal of the game was a rocket shot that grazed off the goalkeeper's hand and hit the underside of the left corner of the post.

The Aggies have now scored 21 goals this season through seven games, they scored just 23 all of last season. Perhaps even more encouraging for the Aggies is that they have 16 assists on those 21 goals. Three of last night's goals came directly off restarts in play, Crystal Burns' first goal on a free kick and the two Aggie penalty kicks. If you take those three goals out of the total the Aggies have 16 assists on 18 goals.

The Aggies improved to 4-1-2 on the season and will take on Lamar tomorrow at high noon. The Cardinals were in El Paso last night to take on UTEP and lost 6-1.

The Aggie volleyball team dropped both matches they played on Friday. The Aggies lost 3-1 to Pepperdine in their morning match but more importantly, they lost Kelsey Brennan for at least the near future. Brennan landed on an opposing player's foot in the second set with the Aggies up 26-25 and the Aggies and Waves in the middle of a point. Play was halted and after Brennan was helped off the floor (thankfully no stretcher involved) the Waves won the next two points to go up 27-26 and would go on to win the set 28-26.

We don't know her status but we do know that she did not break anything which is good news for the Aggies. It goes without saying (but we'll say it anyway) that the Aggies are a much different team without Brennan in the middle. The Aggies are now down two starters (Stephanie Ziegler and Kelsey Brennan).

The Aggies dropped the nightcap against Texas State. They were swept 3-0 but lost the first two sets in extra points. It was a very strange match statistically, the Aggies finished the match hitting .311, Kayleigh Giddens had 23 kills and hit .425 (a very very good hitting percentage), none of the Texas State players finished with more than seven kills, the Bobcats hit .267 but the Aggies were swept. Unfortunately for the Aggies, they struggled at the service line both serving and receiving. The Aggies were aced 10 times by the Bobcats and the Aggies committed 12 service errors. If you subtract the six aces the Aggies had and five service errors the Bobcats had, that's 11 points the Aggies gave away in a match that was determined by a total of seven points. That's the difference between the Aggies sweeping the match last night and the actual result, the Aggies getting swept.

The Aggies will try to end their five match losing streak today against Arizona. The last time the Aggies lost six matches in a row was the 1999 season, Coach Jordan's second season. The only longer losing streaks came in the 1998 season when Coach Jordan's teams had losing streaks of eight matches and seven matches during the season. It is a rare occurrence when the Aggie volleyball team is mired in a losing streak and losing two starters has certainly not helped. It should be noted that the Aggies lost four in a row in non-conference play in 2008, went into conference play at 5-6, proceeded to tie for the regular season WAC championship with Hawai'i and won their first NCAA tournament match. Coach Jordan's team ALWAYS get better as the season goes along and we don't expect this season to be any different.

Today's match is scheduled for a 1:30 p.m. first serve. Streaming video will be available for a fee via the Arizona athletic website. Streaming audio will be available via Aggie Access (subscription required). The match can also be heard on KSNM AM 570 in Las Cruces. Live Stats will also be available.

And last but certainly not least, the Aggie football team is in El Paso for the Battle of I-10. The Aggies are looking to win in El Paso for the second time in the past three seasons and they're also looking to get their first win of the 2010 season.

The Miners are hoping to rebound from a disheartening 54-24 loss to Houston last week on national t.v. (ESPN2). Injuries will play a key role in this game as the Miner offense could receive a big boost with the return of their star running back Donald Buckram. Defensively, the Miners are looking for replacements in the secondary as they lost two starters for the season, safety Braxton Amy and corner Traun Roberson. Meanwhile, the Aggies will be without starting offensive lineman Sioeli Fakalata.

The Aggies need to be able to run the ball against the Miners. This is a UTEP defense that was gashed on the ground by Houston last weekend. It could be a big day for Kenny Turner and Seth Smith who were limited to less than 60 yards last week. The Aggie passing game should be able to also flourish in their second game of the season. The Miner defense was also torched through the air (albeit by one of the nation's top offenses) but the Aggies were able to move the ball effectively through the air last week against SDSU in the team's very first game under new offensive coordinator Mike Dunbar. It's also a game against a more traditional Miner defense, the 4-3 as opposed to SDSU's 3-3-5 which Coach Walker admitted will be a bit easier for Dunbar and offensive line coach Jason Lenzmeier to gameplan against.

The Aggie defense needs to get off the field on third down. If there is a repeat performance of last week's 9-for-19 against SDSU, it will be very difficult for the Aggies to win this game.

The Aggies must also keep turnovers to a minimum. The Aggie offense did a good job last week. They didn't have a single turnover. However, special teams (as Coach Walker said after the game) "killed them." With the Aggies down 34-21 midway through the 4th quarter, Donyae Coleman muffed a punt. SDSU recovered and scored the "nail in the coffin" touchdown. It was the Aggies' lone turnover of the game but it was costly.

It will be very interesting to see how quarterback Matt Christian handles the environment in the Sun Bowl. It's going to be very loud and very hostile in the Sun Bowl tonight. This will likely be the largest crowd that Christian has ever played in front of. Noise can and will definitely be a factor for the Aggie offense tonight. How they manage it, particularly early in the game, will be something to keep an eye on.

If you're making the trip to El Paso for today's game, the El Paso Times has some tailgating rules for you.

Today's game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. kickoff. Streaming video will be available via Miner All-Access (for a fee). Streaming audio will be available via Aggie Access (subscription required). The game can also be heard on the Aggie Sports Network in New Mexico. We'll also be providing updates via Twitter (follow us: @AgsBleedCrimson).

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

NM State vs. Alabama A&M Game Photos

NM State vs. Alabama A&M Game Photos

Aggie Soccer Ties School Record In 8-0 Rout Of Alabama A&M

The Aggie soccer team tied a school record scoring eight goals on Friday night as they easily dispatched Alabama A&M 8-0. The Aggies' eight goals matched their effort earlier this season against Prairie View A&M also in an 8-0 victory.

Crystal Burns put the Aggies on the board in the second minute of play as she launched a ball off a free kick from 32 yards out. The ball cleared the goal keeper's outstretched arms and found the back of the net. It was Burns' second goal of the season.

Just five minutes later Alabama A&M's Edna Aamw Mensa would be called for a foul against Kristen Powers who was in the penalty box giving Powers a penalty kick. She would convert the try for her first goal of the season to put the Aggies ahead 2-0.

Neither team would score the remainder of the half as the Aggies would launch 11 more shots in the half.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Volleyball Team Swept By Texas State

Kayleigh GiddensThe Aggie volleyball team was swept on Friday night by Texas State 3-0 as the Aggies lost set one in extra points 26-24 then lost set two by an identical score of 26-24 before falling in set three 25-20. It's the second time the Aggies have been swept this season both times coming in the second match of a tournament.

Kayleigh Giddens led all players with 23 kills on 40 swings and committed just six attack errors hitting .425 on the match and the Aggies hit .311 for the match and the Aggies struggled at the service line both receiving serve and serving as the Bobcats would record 10 service aces and the Aggies would commit 12 service errors.

The Aggies fell behind early 6-3 in the first set but rallied to tie the set 7-7 after back-to-back service aces by Rocio Gutierrez. A service ace by Ellen Miks gave the Aggies a 9-8 lead, however, the Bobcats would score four straight points to go ahead 12-9 and forcing the Aggies to call a timeout.

Out of the timeout Aggie setter Jennah DeVries recorded a solo block against Texas State's Mo Middleton to trim the deficit to 12-10. The Aggies would fall behind by four points at 17-13 as a Whitney Woods attack would get blocked back by Preslie Alexander and Ashlee Hilbun. Texas State would extend their lead to five points at 19-14 forcing another Aggie timeout. Kayleigh Giddens would come alive after the timeout scoring four of the next five Aggie points to draw the Aggies even with the Bobcats at 19-19.   Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Volleyball Falls 3-1 To Pepperdine At Arizona Invitational

Whitney WoodsThe Aggie volleyball team opened up the Arizona Invitational with a 3-1 loss to Pepperdine on Friday morning. The Aggies lost 25-21 in the first set, 28-26 in the second set, came back to win set three 25-22 before falling 25-17 in set four.

The Aggie volleyball lost the first two points of set one and fell behind 7-2 forcing an early timeout. Pepperdine added two more points out of the timeout to push their lead to seven points at 9-2. Three straight points by the Aggies including a service ace by Madison Hardy cut the Waves' lead to 9-5 but Pepperdine would go on another 7-2 run to push their lead to 16-7. The Aggies would cut the lead to six at 16-10 after three straight points and Pepperdine would maintain the six point advantage at 19-13.

Down 22-16 in the set, the Aggies would cut the Waves' lead to just four at 22-18 after a service ace by Rocio Gutierrez. The Waves would have set point at 24-19 but the Aggies would score back-to-back points to cut the deficit to just three at 24-21 however, an attack error by Rocio Gutierrez would give the Waves the first set 25-21.  Continue Reading This Post >>