Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.
BOISE, ID - The New Mexico State volleyball team picked 12 total blocks to sweep Boise State 25-19, 25-17, 25-20 in Boise, Idaho, Thursday, Oct. 8.
The Aggies go to 9-5 overall and 4-1 in Western Athletic Conference play to hold on to the No. 2 spot in the league standings. Junior Whitney Woods (Midland, Texas) posted six block assists, along with senior Erin Birmingham (Riverside, Mo.) who posted five block assists and sophomore Kelsey Brennan (Monroe, Wash.) who tallied six of her own.
Birmingham also hit .500 on the evening marking six kills without an error. She also had a service ace, one assist and one dig against the now 1-15 Broncos. Brennan slammed down seven kills in the middle with senior Krista Altermatt (El Dorado Hills, Calif.) and junior Kayleigh Giddens (Lubbock, Texas) adding a match-high 10 kills each.
"Erin (Birmingham) played well overall," head coach Mike Jordan said. "She blocked well and was good at the service line. If you give her space, she'll make you work."
Sophomore Jennah DeVries (Denver, Colo.) posted her third double-double of the season with 28 assists and 13 digs on the evening. Altermatt marked seven digs and sophomore Kelsi Phillips (Scottsdale, Ariz.) added five.
NM State fell behind 2-0 early on but Birmingham started the Aggie charge with her first of five kills as she posted a .714 hitting percentage in set one. The set was tied at three, four and five before the Aggies took a lead they did not lose. NM State got a kill from Giddens and another from Birmingham to take a 9-6 lead. The Aggies took a five point lead at 18-13 but its largest lead came at 23-17, before closing out set one 25-19.
The Aggies were outstanding on the defensive side of the net in set two posting seven total team blocks to win 25-17. The set was tied nine times before NM State took an 12-11 lead during a 9-0 scoring run. The Aggies would not look back as the Altermatt tallied four kills in the set, while Woods marked three kills on three attempts. The Aggies, who were hitting .199 coming into the match, posted a .348 hitting percentage in the set with only four errors. BSU hit a negative hitting percentage with more errors than kills.
The Aggies took an early 5-2 lead in set three after Brennan slammed down two straight kills. BSU came back and tied the set at 10-10 before it called a timeout because of the 3-0 point run the Aggies went on that was topped off by a block that Birmingham was in on. The Aggies went up by as many seven at 20-13 but BSU pulled to within three at 21-18. Giddens picked up her fifth solo block of the season to give NM State a four point lead. The Aggies wrapped up the match with BSU hitting an error. NM State hit .171 on the set and won 25-20
NM State heads back to Las Cruces to host Louisiana Tech in the Pan American Center, Saturday, Oct. 10 with the match set for a 12 p.m. (MT) start.