bleedCrimson.net Men's Basketball WAC Tournament Semifinals Preview

The quarterfinals of the WAC tournament saw form hold as all four top seeds advanced to the semifinal round. The only team that had any trouble with their opponent was Louisiana Tech. After jumping out to an early 17-4 lead, the Bulldogs were only up by one at halftime at 33-32. Fresno State actually took a lead on La. Tech with 13:37 left to play but in the end Louisiana Tech was just too much for Fresno State.

The other three quarterfinal matchups had no suspense as each higher seed won by at least 17 points. Utah State blew away Boise State 84-60 after a competitive first half which saw the Broncos only down by five. The host team Nevada made quick work of Idaho. The Pack led by 13 at the break and stretched their lead to as many as 21 points before settling for the 16-point 87-71 win. New Mexico State also had a competitive first half with San Jose State but a 10-0 run in the latter stages of the first half sent the Aggies into halftime with an eight point lead which would quickly swell to over 17 points. The Aggies would go on to win by 21 points, 80-69, and held the league's second best three point shooting team to a paltry 29.4 percent from beyond the arc.

Semifinals

Game 5 - #1 Utah State vs. #4 Louisiana Tech - 6:00 p.m. PT (WAC.tv)
The Aggies and Bulldogs will tangle for the third time this season. The two teams split the regular season meetings with La. Tech thumping the Aggies 82-60, coincidentally Utah State's last loss all the way back on January 4th. In the return game the Aggies squeaked by Utah State 67-61 and had it not been for one bad pass by Jamel Guyton with 1:04 left in the game La. Tech may have come away with the victory. That six point loss by La. Tech was the closest any WAC team came to beating Utah State in Logan this season. The Bulldogs believe they can win even with their leader Kyle Gibson hobbling on an injured ankle. Louisiana Tech will pull the shocker over Utah State and the streak of a team not winning back-to-back WAC tournament titles since Hawai'i will continue leaving Utah State to sweat out an at-large bid on Selection Sunday.

Game 5 - #2 Nevada vs. #3 New Mexico State - 9:00 p.m. PT (ESPN2)
The Aggies and Wolf Pack will saddle up for their third meeting and second in Reno in the past eight days. New Mexico State did not fare well against the Wolf Pack in either meeting falling 77-67 at home in Las Cruces and 100-92 last week in Reno. Both the Aggies and Wolf Pack shot lights out from the field in their quarterfinals, each hitting over 50 percent from the field. However, the adage that it's hard to beat a team three times will ring true this time as New Mexico State will knock off the host Wolf Pack in another high scoring affair.