The Daily Aggie :: 03/14/13

The Aggie men's basketball team kicks off their quest to repeat as WAC Tournament champions today at 1:00 p.m. (MDT) when they take on Idaho. The Aggies swept the season series with Idaho but it wasn't easy. The Aggies won by the slimmest of margins in Moscow, 71-70, getting a last second free throw from Daniel Mullings to win the game and then 76-74 in Las Cruces again getting free throws from Daniel Mullings, this time with 14 seconds left, to win the game. Today's game could be another tight one.

The Aggies must find a way to neutralize WAC Player of the Year Kyle Barone who went for 18/10 in Moscow and 26/7 in Las Cruces. Equally important will be defending the three point arc. The Vandals have shot a combined 13-of-26 in the two games with Connor Hill hitting nearly half of those shots (12).

As far as the Aggies go, they'll likely be without Tyrone Watson according to the Las Cruces Sun-News' Jason Groves who spoke with Coach Menzies. Watson is still recovering from an ankle injury suffered in his first game back from suspension and he did not see any action in the Aggies' win against UT-Arlington on Senior Night last Saturday.

Today's game against Idaho is similar to last year's tournament game against Fresno State. The Aggies struggled against Fresno State in the regular season winning a pair of close games including needing to erase a 19-point deficit to defeat the Bulldogs. The Aggies cruised to victory over the Bulldogs in the WAC tourney game eventually winning the tournament. Could the same thing happen this year? We'll have to wait and see.

The Vandals have yet to win a WAC Tournament game under head coach Don Verlin and the Aggies will try to keep that streak going. This is an Aggie team that should be considered a favorite if not the favorite given the Aggies' history. New Mexico State has also never failed to make it to the semifinals of the tournament but they are also battling a bit of recent WAC history as no team has won back-to-back tourney titles in over a decade with Hawai'i the last team to do so back in the early 2000s.

Today's game is scheduled for a 1:00 p.m. (MDT) tip-off and can be heard on the Aggie Sports Network with streaming audio available via Aggie Access (subscription required).

The Aggie women's basketball team's season ended yesterday with a loss to Seattle in the WAC Quarterfinals. The Aggies gave the top seed a fight for the first 30 minutes of the game going up by 13 in the first half, leading by eight at halftime before running out of gas en route to a 77-53 loss.

It was the final game for Kelsie Rozendaal, Stephanie Gilbreath, Malia Magazzeni and Chrissy Fletcher. Gilbreath finished with 23 points on 8-of-20 shooting but it was Rozendaal who only took four shots and scored just three points after a career-night the day before.

Too often this season the Aggies ignored Rozendaal's presence inside and in particular on a night when the Aggies needed to counter Kacie Sowell's presence in the post, Rozendaal wasn't much a part of the Aggie game plan. Instead the Aggies' shot 28 three pointers hitting 29 percent of them.

It will be an interesting offseason for the Aggies as they'll return an incredibly young team next year. The Aggies desperately need to find a good post player to complement their array of shooters.