Utah State vs San Diego State

Thames scores 15, San Diego State rolls in MWC


LAS VEGAS (AP) Xavier Thames and San Diego State put on a clinic to welcome Utah State to its first Mountain West tournament.

Conference player of the year Thames had 15 points and seven assists to lead No. 8 San Diego State to a 73-39 victory over the Aggies in the quarterfinals.

''We played really, really good basketball, keyed by how we defended them,'' San Diego State coach Steve Fisher said. ''We dictated the pace. That's hard to do - harder to do than it looked. They're a hard team to guard. They run around and they screen.''

The top-seeded Aztecs shot 52.5 percent from the field, including 7 of 17 from 3-point range. San Diego State also outrebounded the Aggies 35-27 and outscored Utah State in the paint, 40-14.

Winston Shepard added 13 points for the Aztecs, while Josh Davis had eight points and 13 rebounds.

Jarred Shaw led Utah State with 14 points and Utah State shot 12 of 41 from the floor.

''San Diego State just takes you out of everything you're trying to do,'' Utah State coach Stew Morrill said. ''At least they took us out of everything we were trying to do. They're able to switch almost every screen. Their quickness, their athleticism can be overwhelming, and it was today.''

The Aggies' 12 field goals tied the record for fewest made field goals in a Mountain West tournament game, while their one made 3-pointer tied for the fewest.

''We had a lot of shots, open shots, that we often make, and we couldn't get them to go,'' Morrill said. ''I thought, you know, there wasn't enough open shots because their defense was just so outstanding.''

San Diego State, which swept the regular-season series against first-year member Utah State, will face the winner of the UNLV-Wyoming game.

The Aztecs opened the second half with the first six points, and a 23-10 run to go up 59-25 at the 12:41 mark.

''We wanted to come in and play a good defensive game,'' Thames said. ''Offensively we wanted to come and play well as well. I think we did both of those things. That's why we got a big win today.''

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Utah State (18-14)152439
San Diego State #8 (28-3) «363773

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Mountain West
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
Boise St.6-116-331
Fresno St.4-314-6120
New Mexico4-39-11164
San Diego St3-311-6101
Colorado St.3-410-10142
Utah St.3-410-10160
Air Force2-48-10238
San Jose St.0-73-15307
Other games
SETON 64 Final
KSU 85 Final
HOU 68 Final
SMU 64
PUR 61 Final
UTAH 39 Final
OKST 70 Final
KAN 77
RUT 31 Final
LOU 92
BAYL 78 Final
DEP 62 Final
UCF 58 Final
FRESNO 77 Final
UCONN 72 Final