The San Diego State women's basketball team played its finest half of the season Friday night to take a 42-14 halftime lead, and then withstood a furious New Mexico State rally in the second half to win its Kangaroo-Coors Shootout first round game, 65-56, in Peterson Gym.
The Aztecs (5-5) will meet Temple in today's championship game at 5 in the San Diego Sports Arena. Temple (5-1) surprised previously-unbeaten Idaho, 63-56, in Friday night's first game.
San Diego State shot 56% from the field in the first half and limited New Mexico State to an 18% (5-for-27) shooting performance in the first 20 minutes. The Aztecs had outrebound New Mexico State, 32-14, at halftime.
The Aztecs' leading scorer, freshman forward Jessica Haynes, scored 12 of her game-high 19 points in the first half and finished with 13 rebounds. Freshman center Brooke Meadows scored 12 points and Shelda Arceneaux added 11 points and 15 rebounds.
After taking a 28-point lead, San Diego State got sloppy in the second half and committed 19 turnovers in the final 20 minutes. New Mexico State, led by Jill Spaschack, who came off the bench to score 11 points, never got closer than the final score.
In Friday's first game, Temple opened a 30-24 halftime lead and hung on to defeat Idaho (10-1). Teresa Govens scored 22 points and grabbed 13 points to lead the Owls into today's championship game. Addie Jackson added 17 points for the winners.
San Diego State is 5-5. New Mexico State is 6-3.
Idaho, which finished 28-2 a year ago, was led by Mary Westerwelle's 23 points and 10 rebounds. The taller Vandals, however, were outrebounded, 53-34. Idaho will meet New Mexico State (6-3) in the consolation game today at 1 in Peterson Gym.
The Aztecs' game against Temple in the Sports Arena will precede the San Diego State men's contest against Colorado State. Last year, in the first-ever Shootout, San Diego State lost in overtime to Northeast Louisiana, 89-87.