The WAC regular season and tournament champion New Mexico State women's basketball team learned its opponent on Selection Monday. The 15-seeded Aggies will stay close to home as they travel to Tempe, Ariz. to take on 2-seed Arizona State at the Wells Fargo Arena.
The Sun Devils were regular season co-champions in the Pac-12 and lost to Cal 75-64 in the Pac-12 tournament's first round. The Sun Devils are 25-6 overall and 13-2 at home this season. They're led by 6-1 junior forward Sophie Brunner who is averaging 10.8 points and 7.5 rebounds per game this season. She is the only Sun Devil averaging double figures in scoring, however, ASU boasts four other players averaging at least 7.9 points per game.
The game will follow the 7 vs. 10 matchup between Tennessee and UW Green Bay which is scheduled for a 3:30 P.M. start. Tip off time for the Aggies' game is scheduled for 5:30 P.M. MDT and the game will air on ESPN2.
DENVER, CO - NM State’s Fiana Finau has been named the Western Athletic Conference Hitter of the Week for March 7-13. This is the first honor of the season and fifth of her career for Finau..
Finau, a senior outfielder from Chula Vista, Calif., hit .579 with 11 hits, three doubles, three home runs, five runs scored and 13 RBIs over six games last week. She posted a 1.211 slugging percentage and a .600 on-base percentage with a hit in five of six games and four multi-hit games on the week. In a single game against rival New Mexico last Tuesday, Finau went 3-for-3 with a double, a home run and four RBIs. She also went 3-for-4 with a double and four RBIs against East Carolina.
DENVER, CO – NM State’s Tyler Erwin has been named Western Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Week for March 7 – March 13.
Erwin, a junior left-hander from Chandler, Ariz. (Hamilton HS), pitched 7.2 innings of scoreless baseball on the week. In a mid-week game, he struck out three over two innings to earn the win over Rio Grande rival New Mexico. He throw 1.1 innings, allowing just one hit with five strikeouts, in Friday’s win over Baylor and he followed that up with four strikeouts and just one walk over 3.0 innings in Sunday’s win over Baylor, earning the save. He has not allowed a run in 10.1 innings and finished with 12 strikeouts on the week.
LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The Western Athletic Conference Champion New Mexico State Aggies will travel to Moraga, Calif., to face West Coast Conference Co-Champion Saint Mary's on Tuesday night to open the 32-team National Invitation Tournament.
The game is set for a 9 p.m. Mountain start and will be televised nationally on ESPN2. NM State Hall of Famer Jack Nixon has the radio broadcast on the Aggie Sports Network.
The Aggies (23-10) are the No. 7 seed in the lower quadrant of the bracket, while Saint Mary's (27-5) is the No. 2 seed. Both teams lost in the championship game of their conference tournaments.
"We are very happy to continue our postseason play, especially with this young team," said NM State head coach Marvin Menzies. "We'd hoped to get a Wednesday game, but we'll play the cards we've been dealt and leave Monday to play Tuesday." Continue Reading This Post >>
LAS VEGAS, NV - In a case of déjà vu but with a mirror image, CSU Bakersfield’s Dedrick Basile buried a 26-foot 3-pointer with 0.2 seconds to play to break the New Mexico State Aggies hold on the WAC Tournament Championship with a 57-54 win at the Orleans Arena Saturday night.
The Aggies (23-10) fell in the tournament championship game for the first time since winning four straight titles starting in 2012. For CSU Bakersfield (24-8) it was their first WAC Tournament win and the ’Runners first victory over NM State in 12 tries.
“That was a heart-wrenching three,” said NM State head coach Marvin Menzies. “But (CSUB) earned the win. They played really good basketball when they needed to in spurts. They needed big shots and got them every time.”
The Aggies played from behind all night, but turned it on late and got the game tied for the first time since 10-all when Tanveer Bhullar hit one of two free throws with 13 seconds to play to knot the game at 54-all. Then came Basile’s dagger.
“I’m very proud of my guys,” said NM State head coach Marvin Menzies. “When baskets just weren’t dropping – point blank baskets that we normally make just weren’t dropping – it kept us from getting our offense going. We’d been playing some pretty good offense against pressure, but it wasn’t meant to be tonight.”
The Aggies were led by the 7-3 sophomore Bhullar, who came off the bench with his second career double-double of 13 points and a career-high 11 rebounds. Sophomore Braxton Huggins also came off the bench with 11 points with seven rebounds to match sophomore Pascal Siakam. Junior Ian Baker scored 10 points as well for the Aggies. Siakam and Baker were selected to the All-WAC Tournament team
Basile led CSUB with 18 points, while Damiyne Durham collected 15 points with nine rebounds. Jaylin Arrington scored 12 points for the ‘’Runners. The trio were named to the WAC All-Tournament team, with Basile as the most valuable player.
The loss ended the Aggies dreams of winning a fifth-straight tournament title and the NCAA Tournament bid that goes with it.
Instead the Aggies will be awarded the automatic bid to the NIT for winning the regular season WAC Championship.
“We still have our goals in front of us of winning some postseason games with the automatic bid to the NIT. It’s hard to think of that now, but we will refocus. We’ll move forward, we’ve got some character kids and we’ll bounce back,” said Menzies.
The NIT bracket selection will be announced on Sunday night at 6:30 Mountain time. The selection show will air on ESPNU.
The Aggie women's basketball team cruised to an 80-53 victory over UT Rio Grande Valley on Saturday afternoon at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Aggies are making their second consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament and their fourth trip overall.
Photos of the women's championship game between No. 1 NM State and No. 2 UT Rio Grande Valley. (Photos by Mark Nessia)
LAS VEGAS, NV - The New Mexico State Aggies used a powerful 1-2 combination of junior Ian Baker and sophomore Pascal Siakam to go with a strong defensive performance to roll past Missouri-Kansas City 78-64 in the semifinals of the Western Athletic Conference Tournament at the Orleans Arena.
The Aggies (23-9), the back-to-back WAC Champion and winners of four straight WAC Tournaments, advance to the championship game. UMKC ends the season at 12-18.
Baker led the Aggies with 20 points, while Siakam scored 18 points with 11 rebounds to chalk up his 26th double-double of the season.
“It was a great effort by the guys,” said NM State head coach Marvin Menzies. “I thought we came out with the effort necessary to throw the first punch, so to speak. It was our execution on defense and our aggressiveness on missed shots that made the difference.”
“We scored from a lot of different ways, from the free throw line and from the perimeter. It makes for a good recipe.”
The Aggies jumped out to an early six point lead only to have the ’Roos battle back.
UMKC got its only lead of the game on a pair of Martez Harrison free throws with 9:36 left in the first to go up 21-20. In retrospect, that just made the Aggies mad.
NM State got a Siakam jumper 26 seconds later, his only points of the first half, to start a 22-5 run that ran to intermission. NM State went to the locker room up 16 at 42-26 and never looked back.
The Aggies built up a 23-point lead with 8:56 to play before the ’Roos made a small run cut it back to 14-point decision.
For Baker, the 20-point game was his fifth of the season but the first since scoring 21 at Baylor in December. Siakam got 16 of his 18 points in the second half.
Joining the pair were sophomores Jalyn Pennie and Braxton Huggins who each hit 3-of-4 from the 3-point arc. Pennie finished with 13 points, while Huggins tallied 11.
Sophomore Tanveer Bhullar scored only five points, but grabbed nine rebounds.
UMKC got 23 points from LaVell Boyd, while Martez Harrison and Kyle Steward both scored 15 points five rebounds.
The Aggies shot 44.2 percent from the floor and held UMKC to just 41.2 percent shooting. NM State outrebounded the ’Roos 40-28 and suffered only nine turnovers.
NM State plays for its fifth consecutive tournament title on Saturday against No. 2 seed CSU Bakersfield who beat Seattle U 72-47 in the second semifinal.
The New Mexico State women's basketball team advanced to its second consecutive WAC Championship game after defeating No. 4 seed Utah Valley 58-44 on Friday afternoon at the Orleans Arena. After a slow start to the game which saw just two points scored in the first four minutes, the Aggies slowly built an 8-0 lead and led 12-2 after the first quarter. The Aggies stretched their lead to 25-10 with 3:16 remaining in the first half and took a 27-14 lead into the break.
Coming out of the break the Aggies continued to pull away from Utah Valley going ahead 41-18 midway through the third quarter. UVU would outscore the Aggies 9-6 over the final five minutes of the third quarter but the Aggies headed to the final quarter with a comfortable 20-point lead at 47-27.
The Aggies would see their lead trimmed to just 13 points at 51-38 after a UVU three pointer with 4:49 left to play and just 10 at 53-43 with just over a minute and a half left but the Aggies would close the final stretch hitting five of six free throw attempts to secure the 58-44 win.
Moriah Mack led the way for New Mexico State on 6-of-10 shooting finishing with 14 points and six rebounds. UVU's Patrice Toston led all scorers with 19 points. The Aggies await the winner of the 2 vs. 3 matchup between UTRGV and CSU Bakersfield.
EL PASO, TX - The New Mexico State baseball team took down New Mexico 9-6 in the first game of the Rio Grande Rivalry Series on Tuesday night at Southwest University Park. The bullpen was the story for the Aggies as Andy Frakes, Kyle Bradish and Tyler Erwin combined to throw four and two-thirds innings only allowing four hits, two runs and striking out five Lobos.
The Aggies jumped on UNM early in the first as Brent Sakurai got on via an error on the shortstop to lead off the inning. Daniel Johnson singled through the left side to move Sakurai to second. Dan Hetzel drove him in with a RBI single to right. Daniel Johnson scored from third on a throwing error by the catcher when Hetzel stole second. Hetzel then moved to third on a wild pitch. Austin Botello scored Hetzel on a sacrifice fly to right, putting the score at 3-0 after one inning. Continue Reading This Post >>
LAS CRUCES, N.M. - Fiana Finau hit a home run, a double and a single to lead the NM State softball team to an 11-3 victory over Rio Grande rival New Mexico on Tuesday night at the NM State Softball Complex.
The Aggies (17-8) scored 11 runs and collected nine RBIs on 14 hits. Finau was 3-for-3, scored two runs and had four RBIs. Makayla McAdams pitched 3.1 innings and faced 17 batters.
New Mexico (11-8) scored three runs and had two RBIs on six hits. Colette Robert pitched 2.1 innings and allowed seven runs on 10 hits in 18 batters faced.
New Mexico scored in the top of the first inning. Cheyenne Smith hit a single to left field and scored as Mariah Rimmer doubled down the left field line to give the Lobos a 1-0 advantage. Continue Reading This Post >>