Western Athletic Conference Tournament Recaps
(Thursday, March 14th)
Final Score: New Mexico State 65, Idaho 49
Las Vegas, NV (Sports Network) - Daniel Mullings produced a game-high 23 points as the New Mexico State Aggies posted a 65-49 win over the Idaho Vandals in the quarterfinals of the Western Athletic Conference Tournament at Orleans Arena.
Mullings converted 10-of-14 shots from the floor and made three steals for the third-seeded Aggies (22-10), followed by Bandja Sy with 14 points and seven rebounds as the team now prepares to meet up with Texas State in the semifinals on Friday night.
Pacing the sixth-seeded Vandals (12-18) was Kyle Barone with 19 points and five rebounds, while Connor Hill contributed 14 points in the losing cause.
Idaho led by a basket early on in the meeting, but the team ended up shooting just 1-of-7 from behind the 3-point line in the first half, eventually falling behind at the break by four points, 32-28. NMSU made good on an impressive 59.1 percent from the floor through the first 20 minutes of action.
The hot shooting continued for the Aggies in the second half as the team converted 60.9 percent, while limiting Idaho to just 2-of-12 beyond the arc and 35.0 percent from the floor overall, en route to the 16-point decision.
In addition to shooting just 3-of-19 on the perimeter, the Vandals also turned the ball over 16 times which were then traded in for 25 points by New Mexico State.
Final Score: Texas State 72, Denver 68
Las Vegas, NV (Sports Network) - Joel Wright erupted for a game-high 32 points and pulled down seven rebounds as the Texas State Bobcats upset the Denver Pioneers, 72-68, in the quarterfinals of the Western Athletic Conference Tournament at Orleans Arena.
Wright shot a near-perfect 9-of-10 from the floor and 14-of-16 at the free- throw line for the seventh-seeded Bobcats (12-21), while Phil Hawkins pitched in with another 13 points for a squad that now moves to the semifinals on Friday to take on third-seeded New Mexico State.
The second-seeded Pioneers (21-9) were paced by Brett Olson with 19 points, followed by Jalen Love and Chris Udofia with 17 and 12 points, respectively. Royce O'Neale logged eight points and eight rebounds, but shot only 1-of-7 from the field.
Denver fell behind right out of the gate and never fully recovered, shooting just 37.5 percent from the floor in the first half, compared to 65.0 percent for the Bobcats who led 37-32 at the break.
In the second half Texas State again shot the ball very well (66.7 percent), adding 14-of-16 at the free-throw line, but still the Bobcats had to hold on for the four-point win.
Denver turned the ball over a mere four times, but could not slow down the Bobcats who finished the evening at 65.7 percent from the floor.
Final Score: Texas-San Antonio 73, Louisiana Tech 67
Las Vegas, NV (Sports Network) - Kannon Burrage led the way 26 points and 13 rebounds as the No. 9 seed Texas-San Antonio Roadrunners upset the No. 1 seed Louisiana Tech Bulldogs, 73-67, in a Western Athletic Conference Tournament quarterfinal battle at Orleans Arena.
For the Roadrunners (10-21), Michael Hale III added 17 points and Jeromie Hill chipped in with 11 points. They'll move on to the semifinals to face Texas- Arlington.
Kenneth Smith led the Bulldogs (26-6) with 16 points, while Raheem Appleby finished with 12 points.
Louisiana Tech shot just 35.3 percent from the field in the first half, including 3-of-15 from 3-point range, but it was still able to take a 31-29 lead into intermission. UTSA was held to 39.3 percent from the field, including 3-of-11 from 3-point range.
After the break, the Roadrunners connected on 53.8 percent from the field, including 5-of-9 from 3-point range. The Bulldogs struggled after halftime, making just 30 percent of their field goal tries, including 5-of-18 from beyond the 3-point arc. With the game tied at 41-41 early in the second half, UTSA ran off six straight points and led the rest of the way, possibly spoiling Louisiana Tech's NCAA Tournament hopes in the process.
UTSA dominated the boards, outrebounding Louisiana Tech 48-35.
Final Score: Texas-Arlington 83, Utah State 78
Las Vegas, NV (Sports Network) - Led by a 23-point effort from Kevin Butler, the fourth-seeded Texas-Arlington Mavericks outlasted the fifth-seeded Utah State Aggies, 83-78, in the quarterfinals of the Western Athletic Conference Tournament at Orleans Arena.
Karol Gruszecki added 12 points for UTA (18-12), which will play Texas-San Antonio in Friday's semifinals. Jordan Reves and Cameron Catlett netted 12 points apiece, with Catlett also handing out seven assists.
For USU (21-10), Jared Shaw tallied 20 points and nine rebounds, while Spencer Butterfield poured in 19 points. Ben Clifford and TeNale Roland each scored 16 points but the two also combined for 10 turnovers.
Although both teams shot greater than 53 percent from the field in the first half, UTA took a 40-29 advantage into intermission by taking 12 more field goal attempts than USU.
The Aggies climbed all the way back to take a 70-69 lead with just over three minutes left in the game, but the Mavericks answered immediately with six straight points to regain the advantage. USU got within one possession in the final minute, but Butler sealed the win for UTA with a 1-of-2 trip to the foul line and a layup down the stretch.
UTA earned extra possessions by winning the turnover battle, 14-6.
03/15 02:25:52 ET