Goode, a 6-1 outside hitter from Georgetown, Texas, is actually seeing playing time for the first time as an Aggie this season after having to sit out last year because of NCAA transfer regulations. Still she has made contributions to the team since first arriving in Las Cruces.
“Shelbi has been a great addition to the club,” Aggie head coach Mike Jordan said. “She redshirted last year but gave us a quality practice player. This year she ‘s battled thru some shoulder issues and has been a solid contributor. She’s a really fun person and is playing her best volleyball as the season winds down.”
To the coach’s point, Goode marked a career-high eight kills versus Seattle U on Thursday night while also adding four digs and three total blocks in a NM State four-set victory.
“It was fun (on Thursday), our game plan as attackers was just to come out and be aggressive. That’s what my mindset was coming into the match and it worked out for me.”
During her only season on the volleyball court Goode has a total of 46 kills, a 1.12 kills/set average, 18 digs and 22 total blocks, including four solo blocks and 18 block-assists. Still, Goode feels there is more to come on Saturday.
“It’s been so much fun here,” Goode said, “I really like the culture and the coaches are a lot of fun. The team also, it’s just a great group of girls. This year, I can honestly say, has been my favorite year to play volleyball. As for my favorite moment, I don’t think it has happened yet, I think Senior Day is the one that I’m really going to take with me.”
Walker, meanwhile, played her first season with NM State in 2012 after transferring from Colorado. She sat out the 2013 season with an injury but has come back strong this season to lead the Aggies in digs (272) and digs/set average (4.06) at the libero position.
This season’s 4.06 digs/set average is eighth best in NM State history for a season and her 3.31 digs/set career average is tied for fourth best in the Aggie record books.
“Hannah is the toughest competitor on the team,” Jordan said. “She’s been the clear leader on the team this year and expects a lot from herself and those around her. We need more players with her competitive drive. She’s done a great job at libero this year and been a great example of how hard work pays off.”
Walker, a native of Colorado Springs, Colo., made an immediate impact upon arriving in Las Cruces. She played in 31 matches and 114 sets during the 2012 season and finished with 327 digs, a 2.87 digs/set average, 62 assists and 22 service aces.
“When I first got here it was like coming in as a freshman again, getting used to playing with a new team again,” Walker said. “That was a tough adjustment, but overall the girls that were here were really welcoming. I loved the atmosphere here and the competitive drive that the coaches have has just grown in me over time.
“They’ve really helped me grow as a player and develop me into my full potential, which I am really grateful for. I really appreciate them and how much they push me and I know their standards for me are really high, some days that’s really tough, but it’s an honor to play for them.”
Aside from her digs numbers this season, Walker has also added 12 assists, and 15 service aces, which is tied for third-most on the Aggie squad. She also marked a career-high 25 digs versus Bakersfield on Sept. 27th in a thrilling five-set NM State victory inside the Pan American Center. The 25 digs are tied for most digs by an Aggie this season.
Although she has played less than two full years for NM State, Walker has amassed a total of 599 total digs in her career, a 3.31 digs/set average, 74 assists and 37 service aces in 50 total matches.
Unfortunately for Walker, injuries have once again caught up to her this season. She has missed the Aggies’ last four matches and will also not be on the court during Saturday’s final home match.
“Being injured right now is really tough, and not being able to play on my Senior Day is going to be really hard,” Walker said. “But I love this team, this team is really close, this is by far the closest team since I’ve been here. This year against Cal and BYU are probably my most memorable moments because we played so well and we were point for point with them and you could really feel us playing well together as a team. That’s something I’ll always cherish and carry with me.”
Game time between the Aggies and Wolverines on Saturday is set for 1 p.m. (MDT). Come out and join NM State in saying farewell to Goode and Walker. If you cannot make it to the Pan Am, the match will air live over the radio on KGRT AM 570.
“We’ll miss them both,” Jordan said, “but we take pride in knowing they will both go on and be successful in their endeavors.”