Strong First Set And Match Saturday Against Aggies

Las Cruces, N.M.-The San Jose State volleyball team started their match at New Mexico State by winning the first set and hitting .321, but the Aggies came back to take the final three sets and win the match, 23-25, 25-16, 25-17, 25-23.

The Spartans started the match by opening up set one with a 7-1 lead behind the serving of Caitlin Andrade.  New Mexico State fought back and tied the set six times before San Jose State took the lead for good at 22-21 on an Aggie hitting error.  The Spartans clinched the first set with a kill from Alex Akana.   For the set, San Jose State hit .321 with 12 kills on 28 swings and just three hitting errors, while the Aggies hit just .132.

After losing sets three and four, San Jose State pushed New Mexico State in the final set with 10 tied scores and eight lead changes. The Spartans took a 19-18 lead on one of three Courtney Zellmer service aces, before New Mexico State took the lead.  The Aggies had a 24-21 lead, but the Spartans would not quit, scoring two points on Taylor Japhet's 14th kill of the match and an Aggie hitting error made the score 24-23.  New Mexico State then recorded the victory on an Alex Akana hitting error.

"We played pretty well today," said San Jose State head coach Oscar Crespo.  "It is tough going two time zones to Louisiana Tech then coming to New Mexico State.  I was pleased with the effort from everyone tonight.  We pushed New Mexico State during the match, and we played much different than on Thursday night."

Japhet led the Spartans with 14 kills, followed by Kylie Miraldi with nine and Akana at eight.  Kristal Tsukano led the team with 11 digs, followed by Thao Pham at 10.  Caitlin Andrade had 38 assists and four digs.  Zellmer led the team with three service aces and added seven digs.

San Jose State plays two more road matches next week.  The team plays at Nevada on Thursday and at Fresno State on Saturday.  Both matches begin at 7 p.m., and live stats will be available with a link on www.sjsuspartans.com under "Live Stats."

New Mexico State def. San Jose State - 23-25, 25-16, 25-17, 25-23.

Kills - San Jose State - Taylor Japhet 14.

New Mexico State - Kayleigh Giddens 24, Kelsey Brennan 11.

Records - San Jose State 1-18, 1-7; New Mexico State 13-7, 8-2.

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