No. 5 San Diego State fell behind again on Friday night in the Mountain West Tournament semifinals. But as has become custom for the Aztecs, they rallied for an 81-68 win over Boise State and advanced to Saturday’s championship game.
The No. 1 seeded Aztecs (30-1) will face No. 2 seed Utah State (25-8) at 5:30 p.m. for the MWC title. The Aggies defeated No. 11 seed Wyoming 89-82 to end the Cowboys’ surprising run after they won their first two games in Las Vegas.
The No. 1 seed Aztecs trailed Boise State by 16 in the first half a day after they trailed Air Force by eight in the second half of a quarterfinal game. San Diego State also trailed at halftime in its last two regular season games before rallying to win both.
San Diego State is a projected No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, according to CBS Sports Bracketology Expert Jerry Palm. But a loss on Friday would have dropped them to a No. 2 seed, according to Palm. Utah State is a projected No. 11 seed in the most recent Bracketology update, but is on the bubble, according to Palm.
Malachi Flynn, KJ Feagin and Matt Mitchell made sure the Aztecs rallied again, though. The trio combined for 60 points to bring San Diego State to a 40-40 tie at halftime against the No. 5 seed Broncos. Boise State beat No. 4 seed UNLV on Thursday but ran out of firepower after its hot start against SDSU.
“We got it tied at halftime,” Feagin told CBS Sports. “We went into halftime with the momentum, and I knew we were going to win after that.”
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The Aztecs are now 30-1. They also reached 30 wins in 2011 and 2014. Both of those seasons ended in the Sweet 16.
Saturday’s championship game, which will decide the first automatic bid into the 2020 NCAA Tournamenmt, will be televised on CBS.
Below is the full schedule for the 2020 Mountain West Conference Tournament.
2020 Mountain West Tournament schedule, scores
Location: Thomas & Mack Center — Las VegasFollow live: CBS Sports App
All times Eastern
First round — Wednesday, March 4
Quarterfinals — Thursday, March 5
Game 4: No. 1 San Diego State 73, No. 9 Air Force 60Game 5: No. 5 Boise State 67, No. 4 UNLV 61 Game 6: No. 2 Utah State 75, No. 7 New Mexico 70Game 7: No. 11 Wyoming 74, No. 3 Nevada 71
Semifinals — Friday, March 6
Game 8: No. 1 San Diego State 81, No. 5 Boise State 68 Game 9: No. 2 Utah State 89, No. 11 Wyoming 82
Championship — Saturday, March 7