The uniforms looked different. The result did not.
San Diego State beat UC Irvine 77-58 on Friday afternoon at Viejas Arena while wearing their annual NIKE N7 turquoise uniforms to support Native American Heritage Month.
Much like their season-opening win over UCLA the game was close for much of the first half before the SDSU defense went into lockdown mode. With 3:37 to play the Anteaters led 25-23.
Irvine didn't score again until after halftime.
The Aztecs forced four turnovers and finished the half on an 11-0 run to take a 34-25 lead at the break. Senior guard Trey Pulliam and senior forward Matt Mitchell both had five points during the run. For the game SDSU forced 25 turnovers.
Things didn't get much better for UCI after the break. The Aztecs opened with a 19-4 run keyed by Keshad Johnson. The sophomore scored 13 points over a 1:53 span to pump the lead up to 53-29. Johnson finished with a career-high 14 points to lead all scorers.
San Diego State starts the season 2-0 and has now won eight straight games against teams from California. They'll get a chance to make it 10 straight early next month.
Due to COVID-19 concerns with the Colorado State program the Rams will not come to Viejas Arena for their scheduled games on December 3 and December 5. The schools and Mountain West Conference are looking for dates to reschedule those games the Aztecs will host the University of St. Katherine on December 2 and San Diego Christian College on December 5.