The game was a conference home opener for the Aztecs (9-6, 1-1 Mountain West), which handed the Cowboys their worst loss since 2011, which was also at the hands of Aztecs. Wyoming (4-12, 0-3 MW) was down to only seven scholarship players this time around.
Jalen McDaniels had a big night with 22 points and 12 rebounds, his third double-double this season and 12 of his career. Not to be outdone, Matt Michell scored 20 points for the Aztecs, his fourth 20-point game this season and sixth in his career.
Jorden Schakel also scored in the double digits with 14 points, followed by Devin Watson with 12 and eight assists.
SDSU’s coach Brian Dutcher said the team stepped up Tuesday after the 24-point loss to Boise State. After they got back from Boise, the Aztecs were on the court an hour later and practice hard to regroup, he said.
“They have to defend harder for longer, they have to make multiple efforts and I thought tonight they did that,” Dutcher said. “Were they perfect? No, they were nowhere near perfect, but it was a step in the right direction.”
Even though Wyoming came in with four wins under its belt and a two-game losing streak, the Aztecs couldn’t afford to take the Cowboys (or any other teams) lightly because of how they’ve been playing so far, Dutcher said.
After making only three of its 21 3-point attempts at Boise State, SDSU made its first five treys and made 9 of 15 for a 48-25 lead at halftime. The Aztecs shot 50 percent behind the arc for the night.
“We definitely did have a bad taste, anytime you lose to one of your rivals like that,” Schakel said. “It’s not completely out from this game. We need to build on this game and keep taking steps in the right direction. It’s all about our effort and our energy and what we can control. It was a good game.”
Up next, San Diego State travels to Colorado Springs to face off against Air Force at 1 p.m. Saturday.