San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

Men’s basketball’s second half uplifts Viejas Arena in 71-55 win over Colorado State

Jaedon LeDee shone, scoring 22 of his 27 points in the second half
Cameron Brossart
San Diego State forward Jaedon LeDee stretches for a scoop shot against Colorado State on Tuesday, Feb. 13 at Viejas Arena. The Aztecs outscored the Rams 44-11 in the second half of their 71-55 win.

The San Diego State men’s basketball team hosted Colorado State and won 71-55 on Tuesday, Feb. 13 at Viejas Arena.

Jaedon LeDee opened the game with a dunk, then the Rams took control with a 14-0 run that lasted three minutes.

LeDee spoke about the first half and what the coaches had to say at halftime.

“We just went in there (and) we got hit in the mouth in the first half,” LeDee said. “Any good fight you get hit and just keep fighting. The coach kind of dug into us a little bit, we rallied as a team, we knew it was a tale of two halves and we just came out more explosive in the second half.”

In the first half, it was all in favor of the Rams. Every time SDSU pulled closer, the Rams figured out a way to continue to expand their lead. By halftime, the Rams were leading 44-30.

Lamont Butler and head coach Brian Dutcher discussed what the team had to do to keep on track with Colorado State.

“(Dutcher) was telling us the only way we could get back into the game and change the outcome was our mentality,” Butler said. “Physically, it is what it is, but we couldn’t lose our mental side, and we have to believe we can win the game. We came out there, played real hard and got the job done.”

“At halftime, all I said was ‘there’s no X’s and O’s’,” Dutcher said. “You have to be mentally right where you believe that if we put everything into it, we’ve got enough time to come back and win the game.”

The Aztecs have won 34 home games after a loss in a row. They have won all 12 at home this season.

Butler mentioned that playing at home is where the Aztecs have to be in order to be in charge of the game.

“We want to protect home court,” Butler said. “Home is supposed to be controlling the game. Second half we made a big emphasis on protecting our home court, staying together and staying connected.”

It was a tale of two halves. LeDee had the hot hand and he ended up scoring 27 points. He outscored the Rams in the second half by himself with 22 points, while the Rams scored only 11.

“(Jaedon) was hard to guard in there, he fouled two of their bigs out and he’s just a dynamic offensive player,” Dutcher said. “We’re doing a better job finding him, we’re finding him in the paint and finding ways to get him the ball.”

With 9:48 remaining, Butler made one of two free throws to tie the game. Off the Butler miss, Jay Pal was  fouled by guard Josiah Strong. On the one-and-one, he made one and missed one and gave the Aztecs a 53-52 lead, their first since LeDee’s dunk to start the game.

Once that lead happened, it was showtime for the Aztecs. The Rams struggled defensively, fouling the Aztecs multiple times, plus CSU head coach Niko Medved was called for a technical foul.

The Aztecs stats at the end of the game were: field goal at 44.4%, 3-pointers at 29.4% and free throws at 72%

Their  top scorers of the night besides LeDee were Butler and Trammell, both scoring 11 points.

Aside from  what was happening on the court in the seats of Viejas Arena, the atmosphere was wild. Dutcher talked about the crowd at home and the crowd of other Mountain West teams.

“Mountain West is hard to win on the road and a lot of it’s because we have great fan bases,” Dutcher said. “You’re playing in front of full houses in this league. When you can get some momentum the home crowd gets behind you, it’s so loud that the team can’t hear their coaches… We played (with) better execution but we had (Colorado State) pressed a little bit in the second half and I think the crowd was a big part of it.”

The  Aztecs will host the New Mexico Lobos on Friday, Feb. 16 at 7 p.m.

About the Contributor
Abigail Segoviano, Staff Writer
Originally from Richmond, California, Abigail Segoviano is a second-year student, majoring in Journalism with a minor in Spanish. This is Abigail’s second year at the Daily Aztec where she got the opportunity to expand her writing skills as a journalist. As a staff writer last year she had the opportunity to mainly cover the entire season of women’s volleyball and also covered a couple of games for women’s basketball. This year her main focus is to branch out and write for different sports. Additionally to get involved in other sections such as Multimedia and Mundo Azteca. Abigail is the Vice President of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (SDSU Chapter). Abigail received an award from The Daily Aztec: “Consistent Contributor.” In her free time, she enjoys reading, watching sports, listening to music, and going on adventures with friends.