LUBBOCK, Texas – New Mexico stymied Texas Tech’s attack Wednesday night with 15.5 blocks en route to forcing the Red Raiders into 23 errors on the night in a 3-0 sweep (25-23, 25-19, 25-10) at the United Spirit Arena.
The Red Raiders (8-15) hit just .096 as a team, their second-lowest attacking percentage this season that came as a result of the 23 attacking errors that were the most for Tech in a three-set match this year.
“We didn’t have the focus and emotion it takes to win against a quality opponent like New Mexico,” Tech head coach Don Flora said. “There are some pieces that are good but it’s not good all the time. We didn’t get a good start, and you can’t make that many errors and win a set.”
New Mexico’s 15.5 blocks marked the third-most for a Tech opponent this season, over half of which came in a crucial first set where the Lobos (16-4) broke up a 15-15 tie with a 6-0 run that was enough to hold off a late Red Raider rally.
The Lobos took opening leads early in each set, leading 9-5 in both the first and second sets before Tech rallied to tie both frames at 15 apiece. In addition to its run late in the first set, New Mexico also closed the second set on a 10-4 run to take a commanding 2-0 lead into the intermission.
Changale Riddle powered the Lobos both offensively and defensively, connecting on 14 kills with no errors while also adding 13 digs and six blocks at the net. She wrapped the match hitting .438 after taking 32 swings.
New Mexico hit .288 as a team thanks to just 10 attacking errors as Julia Warren posted nine kills while Cassie House and Skye Gullatt added five kills each as well.
The Red Raiders were boosted by Aubree Piper’s eight kills in the middle as well as Breeann David and Mikia Mills, who both totaled seven kills each. Emily Ruetter ended the night with 19 assists to go along with three digs while Marguerite Grugg came off the bench in the second set to dish out seven assists.
Rachel Brummitt once again continued her strong play from the back row, totaling 17 digs on the night while Nicole Hragyil also added nine off the bench. New Mexico led the battle for digs, 52-45, thanks to a match-high 19 from Miquella Lovato.
The loss snapped a four-match winning streak for Tech over New Mexico as the Lobos scored their first victory in Lubbock since taking a 3-1 victory on Sept. 19, 1992.
The Red Raiders will look to get back on the winning path Saturday afternoon when Big 12 play resumes with a 1 p.m. first serve against Baylor.
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