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Story and photos by Liz Alper

February 8, 2017 (San Diego) - Aztecs women’s basketball has suffered four straight losses in Mountain West conference play  Tonight they had another chance to redeem themselves at home against San Jose State, who they lost a close 81-80 overtime game to in January.

SDSU fell victim to the Spartans’ hard-hitting offense early and in addition, the Spartans showed why they're the conference leader in three pointers.  But the Aztecs started to work the three ball themselves at the end of the first quarter, specifically who always leads it, junior guard Lexy Thorderson, who quickly racked up 11 points.  But the highlight of the first quarter was junior guard Geena Gomez’s buzzer-beating three that catapulted the Aztecs to a 31-23 lead after one quarter.

In the second quarter, the Spartans cut into and eventually tied the Aztecs at 40, but that didn't scare Kymberly Ellison.  The senior guard stepped up when the Aztecs needed her, hitting a big three and driving to the hoop for two.  Those baskets plus junior guard McKynzie Fort’s last minute two put the Aztecs up by five at the half, 47-42.  Ellison finished the first half with 13 points.

In the third, the Spartans tried again to tie the game and succeeded--twice--but were thwarted yet again by the unstoppable three force of Thorderson and three point plays by senior guard Ariell Bostick and freshman forward Baylee Vanderdoes.  SJSU threatened with the three again, but the Aztecs stayed out in front to end the third quarter up 73-71.

But their streak of luck ended when the Spartans took their first lead since the first quarter early in the fourth.  It snowballed and SDSU, who had an answer for SJSU’s attack all game, had no answer for what the Spartans were doing now; now that they had killed SDSU with the three, SJSU was driving to the hoop for easy twos and SDSU couldn't slow them down.  The Aztecs lost 99-90 in a game they led for 90% of the time for and should have won.  The Aztecs couldn't slow down senior point guard Dezz Ramos, who finished the game with a whopping 27 points.  A bright spot in this game:  Thorderson finished with 17 points.

“We started and played three quarters really well and then fizzled at the end,” head coach Stacie Terry said. “What we’re struggling to do as a team, as a unit, is to put 40 minutes together in a complete game and that’s our problem is we’re playing 33 minutes and leaving seven minutes out there.  We can’t take possessions off, we can’t have droughts where we’re not scoring and we just didn’t play well for 40 minutes tonight...we’ve got to find a way to finish at the rim.”

The lady Aztecs hit the road again on Saturday to face Nevada on Saturday. Tipoff is at 4:00 p.m.

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