#7 Aztecs Dominate Boise State At Viejas 83-65 To Stay Undefeated
Now 17-0 the Aztecs are on their best start since 2010-11 when they went 20-0, making the Sweet 16 and posting a SDSU-record 34-3.
“They just blitzkrieged us.” – Boise State coach Leon Rice
San Diego, CA- San Diego State (17-0, 6-0 MW) easily defeated the Boise State Broncos (11-7, 3-3 MW) in front of a sold-out Viejas Arena crowd of 12,414 on Saturday night.
The Aztecs had this match locked up by halftime.
Boise State, like Utah State, Fresno State and others entered Viejas on a mission to hand the Aztecs their first loss of the season. But, within the first five minutes of the game Leon Rice realized this Aztecs squad was playing on a whole different level as they went on a 23-9 opening run.
“They just blitzkrieged us,” said Rice.
“We tried to help on the post a little bit and Whack! Whack! Whack! Three (3-pointers). It all starts with Malachi though. He just gets going down hill, and he’s so shifty and smart with the ball. He’s a handful, and he’s the straw that stirs that drink.”
Worse yet: it wasn’t even Malachi Flynn, Yanni Wetzell or even Matt Mitchell who dominated.
It was KJ Feagin who made 16 of his season-high 23 points in the first half. Feagin was ON FIRE.
Rice then realized the Aztecs have more depth than a Chinese buffet.
Nonetheless, Wetzell did add 20, while Flynn deposited 19 and Mitchell put away 10 for the Aztecs.
Flynn dished out four of his six assists in the first half, making mincemeat of the Boise State defense with an agility that caught Leon Rice’s attention.
“One of those passes I was like, ‘Wow!’ The one where he wrapped it around our whole defense,” Rice said. “We were kind of in the right spot and it was like, ‘Wadda ya do?’ I mean, he threw it on the other side of our defenders and it was perfect. There’s not a lot of point guards that can do that.”
RJ Williams contributed 16 points for Boise State, despite the heavy SDSU defensive aggression
Feagin made consecutive shots to pull ahead 33-19; Jordan Schakel nailed a 3 and Wetzell had a layup. Flynn and Wetzell made sequential shots to push a 45-21 lead. Flynn then did a shake-and-bake, stepping back and pulling the trigger to sink a long- range 3.
Anybody not guarding Flynn out to 30 feet isn’t doing their job…
Feagin’s 16 first-half points helped SDSU take a 48-25 halftime lead.
In the second half, Boise State outscored San Diego State 40-35 with the help of a 5-for-11 effort from 3-point land. Redshirt freshman (and coach’s son) Max Rice and true freshman RayJ Dennis collectively sank four 3-pointers to finish with eight and 10 points, respectively.
Dennis made his second career start in place of senior Marcus Dickinson, who was sidelined with a strained quad.
Williams came a board short of his 7th career double-double. He led the team with his 16 points and nine rebounds in 26 minutes.
The non-recoverable lead was established in the first half, and despite a strong Broncos effort this was a near 20-point Aztecs victory.
Nobably, SDSU defense curtailed Boise State’s top two scorers — Derrick Alston Jr. (20.3 ppg) and Justinian Jessup (15.5 ppg) to a combined 16 points on 6-for-21 shooting.
RJ Williams said after the game, “It’s very frustrating, because we worked very hard the last three days on how to guard and what we’re supposed to do. We just didn’t execute it and when we don’t do that, things like this happen.”
Leon Rice had a clearer conclusion. “Give credit to San Diego State, they’re undefeated for a reason.”
SDSU plays at Fresno State on Tuesday, January 14th at 8 p.m. PST.
Boise State plays at Air Force on Wednesday, January 15th at 7 p.m. MST.