#17 Nevada Routs SDSU 81-53 For Share Of Mountain West Title
Finally defeating SDSU, Nevada enters the Mountain West Championship Tournament as the #1 seed over Utah State.
With a Senior Night win against the Aztecs, the Wolf Pack tie Utah State for a share of the regular season Mountain West title
RENO, Nevada — Against San Diego State (19-12, 11-7 Mountain West) Nevada (28-3, 15-3) delivered a win on Senior Night- their final regular-season home game, and they did so with a bang while tying Utah State for the regular season Mountain West Title.
“Wonder Twins” Caleb and Cody Martin had a combined 39 points to lead No. 17 Nevada to an 81-53 crushing of San Diego State on Saturday night that helped them clinch a share of the Mountain West title with Utah State.
The Martin twins, both seniors, finished at 53.1 percent. Jordan Caroline, who refrained from breaking any glass after this match managed 16 points and Trey Porter had 13.
Nevada recognized seven basketball players (including six transfers) on Senior Night.
“I told them I loved them and thanked them for taking me and my family on this ride,” Nevada coach Eric Musselman said of his seniors.
What went wrong for the Aztecs? San Diego State managed as many personal fouls as rebounds (25) with one offensive rebound.
Nevada grabbed 42 boards and beat the Aztecs 26-12 in the paint. Nevada made 20 free throws to San Diego State’s uncharacteristic seven.
The Wolf Pack jumped out to a 16-5 lead in the first five minutes in front of 11,243, but San Diego State answered with a 10-0 run in the final two minutes of the first half and entered the break trailing 42-37.
Nevada never trailed in the game and dominated the second half, outscoring San Diego State 39-16.
Jeremy Hemsley led San Diego State with 16 points. Matt Mitchell and Devin Watson each made 14 for the Aztecs, who shot 34.6 percent as a team.
According to Hemsley: “Those seniors are relentless, especially the Martin twins and Caroline, I have a lot of respect for them and I think they have a lot of respect for me, too. It’s a great atmosphere. I wanted to cry just knowing it was my last night playing here. It’s something you’re going to miss, playing in front of fans like that, who know your name and are going to talk trash to you.”
The Aztecs finished the season tied with UNLV for fourth place in the Mountain West and will enter the MWC tournament as the fourth seed.
Nevada enters next week’s conference tournament as the first seed because it owns a tiebreaker with Utah State against third-place Fresno State.
The Wolf Pack avenged its 65-57 loss at San Diego State on February 20, and broke its three-game losing streak against the Aztecs.
Nevada finished the season 15-0 at Lawlor Events Center, and grabbed its 18th straight home victory, tying a school record.
The Aztecs play Thursday against UNLV in the Mountain West Tournament in Las Vegas. Nevada plays Thursday against the winner of the No. 8 vs. No. 9 play-in game in the Mountain West Tournament.