Aztecs Survive (Barely) And Advance (Gladly)

SDSU Needs Overtime To Beat New Mexico State, 73-69

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    SPOKANE, WA - MARCH 20: Head coach Steve Fisher of the San Diego State Aztecs yells at his team during the game against the New Mexico State Aggies in the second round of the 2014 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena on March 20, 2014 in Spokane, Washington. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)

    Two of San Diego State's four losses this season came to the University of New Mexico. SDSU nearly made it a trio of losses to the Land of Enchantment in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament.

    The 4th-seeded Aztecs beat number New Mexico State, the 13-seed in the West, 73-69 in overtime in their opening game in Spokane on Thursday night.

    Mountain West Conference Player of the Year Xavier Thames scored a game-high 23 points, and as usual most of them came when the Aztecs looked like they were in trouble. A 12-point halftime lead was whittled to two, and Thames scored six straight points to keep the Aztecs in control.

    The Aztecs reached 30 wins for the second time in program history and won for the fourth time in the NCAA Tournament (all of them coming in the last four years). SDSU will face 12th-seeded North Dakota State in the second round.

    The Bison also won in overtime, knocking off 5th-seeded Oklahoma 80-75. The Aztecs and Bison tip off at 3:00 San Diego time on Saturday.