All good things must come to an end.
The 13th-ranked Colorado State volleyball team found that out the hard way Thursday night, in a three-set loss to New Mexico. The win marked the Lobos’ first defeat of the Rams in five years and was only their second win in their past 31 meetings.
CSU led by as many as seven in the first set, but New Mexico came back and didnâ€™t trail again until the decisive third set.
New Mexico senior outside hitter Lisa Meeter, a Colorado native, torched the Rams for a double-double with 15 kills and 15 digs.
â€œWe handled every other player except for (Meeter),â€ coach Tom Hilbert said. â€œThat was the best match sheâ€™s ever had against us in four years.â€
No Ram notched double-digit kills for the first time since the teamâ€™s win at Northern Colorado earlier this season. CSUâ€™s defense played well despite the loss, only allowing the Lobos to hit .137 in the match.
â€œWe actually held them to pretty good numbers,â€ Hilbert said.
Middle blocker Megan Plourde returned to the lineup after missing the last two games with an ankle injury and led CSU with eight kills and five blocks.
â€œI felt like we were in the swing of things,â€ she said. â€œIt wasnâ€™t any different.â€
The loss was the Ramsâ€™ first since Sept. 17 at home against Long Beach State, and their first road defeat since a 3-1 setback at Florida more than two months ago. In addition, Thursday marked the first time CSU failed to win a set this season.
â€œWe play sports and people lose in sports,â€ junior setter Evan Sanders said. â€œWhat we can do is turn it into a learning experience and play better next time.â€
The Rams next play Saturday in Fort Worth, Texas. against TCU. The Horned Frogs (13-12, 4-7 MWC) defeated CSU last season when the two sides met in Fort Worth.
â€œThis is a difficult road trip,â€ Hilbert said. â€œThese are hard opponents.â€
CSU is now 11-1 in the Mountain West Conference, while the Lobos moved within two games of the Rams with four matches left in the regular season for both teams.
â€œWe need to respond after a loss,â€ Hilbert said. â€œWe need to be better after a loss.â€
Volleyball beat reporter Kyle Grabowski can be reached at email@example.com.