Aztecs take down Lobos, win third straight

by Eli Baldrige

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Junior center Kelena Tutt recorded a career-high nine rebounds and added six points on Tuesday night. Peter Kluch / Senior Staff Photographer

Junior center Kelena Tutt recorded a career-high nine rebounds and added six points on Tuesday night. Peter Kluch / Senior Staff Photographer

For the third time in as many years, the San Diego State women’s basketball team won at one of the loudest and highest arenas in the Mountain West Conference: The Pit.

And for the third time in as many games, SDSU won a conference game.
The season looked bleak for the Aztecs just days ago, but after a 50-44 win against New Mexico on Tuesday night, SDSU is back on a winning track. The Aztecs’ three straight wins have come in less than a week, and two were on the road at elevation.

“We’re all exhausted,” head coach Beth Burns said. “But at the end of the day, we won another game.”

The Lobos took command early, but the Aztecs battled back in a joint effort. SDSU got help early off the bench, as nine players scored in the first half and they went into the break with a 27-19 lead. Junior center Kalena Tutt was a key contributor and grabbed a career-high nine rebounds for the Aztecs.

“We started all discombobulated,” Burns said. “But (Tutt) was the difference maker in the half.”
Neither the Lobos nor SDSU shot the ball well. The Aztecs shot just less than 30 percent and were 1-13 from 3-point range. But New Mexico shot even worse, making only 14 out of 62 shots.

The Lobos chipped away at SDSU’s lead in the second half, cutting it to just one point with eight minutes to play. But that was the closest New Mexico got, as the Aztecs went on a 10-0 run to lead 47-36.  A late Lobos run was stopped when junior guard Sajoyia Griffin hit two clutch free throws to secure the win with less than a minute to play.

“We didn’t have our ‘A’ game; we didn’t even have our ‘B’ game,” Burns said. “But to be able to just hang in there shows it was a total team win.”

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