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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, March 14, 2010

New Mexico State wins title


Associated Press

RENO, Nev. Jamhar Young spent the afternoon in front of the television watching other teams earn NCAA tournament berths.

He was determined to do the same for New Mexico State.

The 6-foot-5 junior point guard and tourney MVP scored 19 points to help New Mexico State snap top-seeded Utah State's 17-game winning streak with a 69-63 upset in the Western Athletic Conference title game last night.

"I was watching TV today and seeing all those teams saying, 'We're going dancing. We're going dancing,' " Young said. "So I just visualized it for us, and it is an amazing feeling."

Young scored consecutive baskets to spark a 14-4 run late in the game that turned a 51-46 deficit into a 60-55 lead for New Mexico State.

The night before, he hit a basket with 3.8 seconds left in the semifinals to knock off second-seeded Nevada, 80-79.

"I love to make big shots," Young said. "It's what I do. Coach calls my number and I love to be in the spotlight."

Troy Gillenwater added 15 points and Jonathan Gibson 14 for the Aggies (22-11), who had only five turnovers in a physical game to Utah State's nine.

Jared Quayle had 25 points, Nate Bendall 16 and Tai Wesley 13 for Utah State (27-7), which trailed 28-26 at the half en route to its first loss since Jan. 4.

"It's a tough loss," Utah State coach Stew Morrill said. "We knew we were in for a tough game. They just kept answering everything we did. That's a good team. They can do something in the NCAA tournament."

Morrill expects his team to be there, too, with an at-large bid, but knows there is no guarantee given the WAC's mid-major status.

"We won 17 games in a row, we won our league by three games, we got to the finals in this tournament," he said. "Our RPI is good and our strength of schedule is better than a lot of teams they are talking about."

WOMEN

LOUISIANA TECH 68, FRESNO STATE 66

Senior Shanavia Dowdell had 20 points and 19 rebounds and Jasmine Bendolph hit an 18-footer with 33 seconds left to help Louisiana Tech snap top-seeded Fresno State's 19-game winning streak with a 68-66 upset yesterday in the WAC title game.

Whitney Jones added 13 points and Tarkeisha Wysinger and Adrienne Johnson 10 each for the Lady Techsters (23-8), who had been to 25 consecutive NCAA tournaments until the streak ended in the 2006-07 season. They won the national championship in 1988 and were the runner-up in 1983, 1987, 1994 and 1998.

Hayley Munro had 15 points and Jaleesa Ross 14 for Fresno State (27-6), which shot only 34 percent from the field and was out-rebounded 49-35, but should still receive an at-large bid to the NCAA tourney.

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