Aztecs Advance to Mtn. West Conference Championship Game

SDSU dominates #22 Nevada to get within 1 win of NCAA Tournament

For the first three-quarters of the season the Aztecs men’s basketball team was … aside from a win over Gonzaga … underwhelming. But they finished the regular season on a 6-game winning streak and beat Fresno State (the only team to beat them twice in the regular season) in the Mountain West Conference Tournament.

That was an appetizer for what they did to Nevada on Friday night.

San Diego State ripped the Wolfpack 90-73 in a game that really was not as close as the final score may indicate. At one point the Aztecs had a 33-point lead. The win puts SDSU in the conference championship game against New Mexico.

The winner of that game earns an automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament, a place that a month ago seemed like an impossible dream for the Aztecs.

SDSU had a monster first half, making a blistering 61.3% of their shots, to build a 55-25 lead at the break.

The Aztecs took a 66-33 lead midway through the 2nd half when Devin Watson hit a pair of free throws. Watson scored 20 points while freshman forward Jalen McDaniels had 17 points and 12 rebounds. All five SDSU starters scored in double-figures and they might have reached the century mark if head coach Brian Dutcher had not emptied his bench late in the 2nd half.

The Wolfpack getting knocked out might be a good thing for the conference. Nevada is a virtual lock to earn at at-large bid in the 68-team championship field so this very likely means the Mountain West will have two teams playing in March Madness.

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