NMSU defeats Nevada 3-1

Courtesy: New Mexico State University

RENO, Nev. – The New Mexico State volleyball team defeated Nevada in four sets (16-25, 25-22, 25-20, 25-21) inside the Virginia Street Gym Thursday night.

With the win the Aggies improve to 8-1 in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) and 14-9 overall. Nevada falls to 4-4 in the conference and 10-11 on the season after the loss.

NM State hit .175 against Nevada recording 56 kills against 29 errors. On the other side of the net, the Wolf Pack posted 52 kills versus 18 miscues. The Aggies notched 62 digs while the Pack tallied 59.

“Nevada has a good team and they play really well here,” head coach Mike Jordan said.  “We didn’t play much defense in the first set and they hit the ball really well. We knew we had to get our act together defensively after that set and fortunately we did. ”

Junior Jennah DeVries tallied a match-high 42 assists while adding five kills and 11 digs for her sixth double-double of the year.  Senior Kayleigh Giddens led the team in kills with 23. Senior Whitney Woods added 10 kills. Junior libero Kelsi Phillips led the defense with a match-high 17 digs.

Nevada took set one 25-17. The beginning of the set was full of rallies. The Wolf Pack jumped out to an early 2-0 lead. The Aggies rallied to take the lead with four straight points at 4-2. But Nevada strung together seven straight tallies to lead 9-4 and never trailed again. NM State cut the lead down to three on multiple occasions but could get no closer. Giddens led the Aggies with three kills in the set. NM State hit .026 with nine kills against nine errors. Nevada tallied 15 kills and committed just three errors to hit .286.

The Aggies turned it around in set two to even the match at one set apiece with a 25-22 win. NM State posted 14 kills while making just five errors in the stanza to record a .310 hitting percentage. NM State steadily built a seven-point lead at 12-5 but Nevada stormed back with a 15-8 run to tie the match at 20-all. The Wolf Pack took a brief lead at 21-20 but the Aggies won five of the final six points to take the set. Giddens again led the Aggie attack with five clean attacks while senior Whitney Woods and junior Kelsey Brennan each added three kills.

In set three Giddens’ seven kills led the Aggies to a 25-20 win to lead the match 2-1. After Nevada opened the scoring, NM State scored five straight to lead 5-1 and never looked back. The Aggies built their biggest lead of the match at 13-5. The Wolf Pack rallied to within two after a 7-1 flurry. But the Aggies held off the home team down the stretch for the win. The Aggies hit .116 in the set with 14 kills and nine errors. Nevada hit .212 in the third with 10 kills and three errors.

The fourth set started much like the third with Nevada opening with a point and then the Aggies rattled off six straight to take command early. Nevada closed to within two at 14-12 but the Aggies held off the Wolf Pack the rest of the set to clinch the match at 25-21.

Lindsay Baldwin led the Wolf Pack with 13 kills in the match while Nicole Link topped the Nevada defense with 19 digs.

The Aggies head to Logan, Utah for the first match of the year with Utah State, Saturday, Oct. 23 at 8:30 p.m. (MT) inside the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. Be sure to follow the Aggies on Twitter.com @NMStateAggies.