UNM Continues Winning Way with Sweep of Green Bay
ABILENE, Texas- For the fourth time this season, The University of New Mexico earned a straight-set victory following a win over Green Bay (25-16, 25-15, 25-18) on Friday morning.
To reiterate, in the four matches that UNM has played this season, that is 12 sets won, zero sets dropped.
The Lobos (4-0) had several standouts in the match, again overpowering their opponent in all aspects.
Melissa Walden recorded her third double-double of the year with 32 assists and 13 digs, with her 32 assists outnumbering the entire Phoenix total, and hit .600 with three kills on five swings. Alena Moldan was seemingly all over the floor, digging a match-high 21 balls to go along with five assists. It was the third match that the junior libero surpassed 20 digs. Uxue Guereca was the lead attacker for the Lobos with a match-high 13 kills on 27 attempts with one error for a career-best .444 hitting percentage.
At the net, freshman and Texan native Elizabeth Woods accounted for three assisted blocks, tying Kaitlynn Biassou for the team lead in the category, with the freshman middle blocker also recording four kills. Biassou led with two service aces, the third time this season that the Lobo co-captain has finished with two, and was one kill shy of double figures while hitting .412.
While not holding their opponent to under .100, the Lobo defense again stymied the Phoenix, limiting them to just .117 in the match and 33 kills and 19 errors on 120 attacks, and had 18 more digs than the Phoenix (58-40).
The first set was close early on, and four straight Lobo kills gave UNM a 6-5 lead and another run, this time 6-0, created some separation to put UNM up 14-8. The Lobo lead continued to grow to eight at 18-10, ultimately reaching double figures at 23-13 on a Guereca kill. A mini Green Bay run prolonged the set, but a GB service error provided the final point and the 25-16 set win.
Guereca hit .556 in the first set with five kills and Walden was halfway to her double-double with 11 assists and five digs. As a team, the Lobos hit .455 with 17 kills and two errors on 33 attempts.
The second set was just as close with four ties in the first eight points before the Lobos pulled ahead with two Phoenix attack errors and a Guereca kill that made it 7-4. Green Bay tied the set at eight, but consecutive Guereca kills put the Lobos back in front. The Phoenix got as close as one at 11-10 before a 3-0 Lobo run put enough separation between UNM and Green Bay.
The lead grew from four to six o another 3-0 Lobo run and expanded to seven at 20-13 on a Hayley Torres service ace that pushed UNM to the 20-point mark. Two attack errors by Green Bay pushed the margin to its largest point of nine at 22-13 and from there a Guereca kill, ball handling error and Avital Jaloba kill secured the set at 25-15.
Guereca matched her first set total with five more kills, hitting .400 in the set, with Walden adding 10 assists and four digs and Moldan recording eight digs. UNM hit three service aces in the set with one each from Biassou, Torres and Moldan.
In the third set, after the Lobos gained the early edge at 6-3, the Phoenix went on a 5-0 run to take an 8-6 lead. Undeterred, the Lobos pushed right back to tie the set at eight and took a 9-8 lead on a Biassou ace. There were three ties at nine, 10 and 12, but the Lobos gained the upper hand on a ball handling error by the Phoenix and a Guereca kill. The lead grew to six at 19-13 following a 5-0 run that included kills by Guereca, Biassou and Woods, a Woods and Biassou block and a Green Bay attack error. Kills by Biassou and Wolf further extended the lead and pushed the Lobos past the 20-point mark. Guereca put a close to the match with a final kill on match point as the Lobos took the set 25-18.
Biassou closed the match with four kills in the final set, hitting .571 with seven attacks and zero errors, with Walden finishing with 11 more assists in the set and Moldan eight digs. Woods tallied three assisted blocks to go with two kills.
Of note, through the first four matches, the Lobos have 67 more kills, 60 more digs, 59 more assists, 16 more aces and 13 more total blocks than their opponents. While UNM is hitting .308 thus far, the opposition is hitting just .063.
The Lobos return to the court at 6 p.m. MT/ 7 p.m. CT to face the host Abilene Christian.