NEW ORLEANS, La. (11/18/04) -- The North Texas volleyball team (7-23) was just a few breaks away from shocking New Mexico State (28-2) in the first round of the Sun Belt Conference Tournament, but couldn’t pull off the upset as its season came to a close with a 3-1 (30-22, 29-31, 14-30, 34-36) setback to the Aggies on Thursday.
North Texas entered the tournament as the No. 8 seed, giving it a tough first-round assignment in a top seeded New Mexico State team that went undefeated in league play and won 27 matches during the regular season. The Mean Green didn’t back down, however, battling the Aggies throughout.
NT set the tone early with a commanding eight-point victory in the first game and then raced out to a 24-15 advantage in the second game. Staring at a probable two-game deficit, the Aggies responded with a tremendous comeback effort that saw it score 16 of the matches final 21 points and pin the Mean Green with a tough two-point loss.
The Aggies capitalized on its momentum from the second game as it came out of the break and promptly handed NT a 30-14 setback. NMSU hit a match high .357 in the game, while holding the Mean Green to a .000 attack percentage.
North Texas didn’t go away quietly, taking the Aggies the distance in the final game. NT held game-point in the final contest at 34-33 and threatened to force a fifth and deciding game, but New Mexico State scored the next three points to escape with a hard-fought victory.
The Mean Green actually recorded two more kills than NMSU, but hit .128 in comparison to the Aggies .165 attack percentage. Led by Brittney Gregory with a career-high 10 block assists, North Texas came away with its best results all season at the net with 15 blocks.
Gregory added one block solo and also recorded 15 kills to collect her fifth double-double of the season. The second team All-Sun Belt Conference selection was one of three NT players to record a double-double, joined by Katy Prokof and Heidi Johnson. Prokof recorded a team-high 16 kills and also had 11 digs, while Johnson handed out team-high 44 assists and posted a match-high 17 digs.
NMSU was led by Stevi Adams and Sarah Silagy with 20 and 13 kills, respectively.