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Lobos rout Aztecs, who drop 7th straight

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) -- New Mexico sophomore Dionne Marsh is a high maintenance scorer.

Marsh scored 18 points by hitting seven of eight shots Wednesday night
and opened up scoring opportunities for her teammates as New
Mexico (No. 17 ESPN/USA Today, No. 18 AP) beat San Diego State 76-45.

"Marsh always seems to need a double team," said San Diego
State coach Beth Burns. "She's a shooter's best friend."

With the Aztecs trying to stop Marsh's jumper, the rest of the
Lobos had plenty of open shots and they knocked in 9 3-pointers.
That tied their season high proficiency from behind the arc.

"I don't know of too many teams that can hit nine of 18 in
practice, much less in a game," Burns said. "They're so
unselfish. That's a part of New Mexico that you have to coach to
fully appreciate."

New Mexico (15-4, 5-1 MWC) used an 11-0 run in the first half to
break it open and hand the Aztecs (3-14, 0-7 MWC) their seventh
straight loss.

Most of Marsh's shots were in the paint, off short turnaround
jumpers.

Erin Jackson with 14 points and Michelle Strawberry with 13 led
San Diego State.

San Diego State hit four of its first six shots to take an 8-5
lead but fell behind for good by going scoreless for more than nine
minutes. The Aztecs missed 10 straight shots during that stretch.
The shooting slump ended with Shanna Demus' offensive rebound
basket with 3:18 left in the first half, and by then New Mexico had
a 26-14 lead.

New Mexico led 31-18 at halftime and three straight 3s -- one by
Katie Montgomery and two by Abbie Letz -- in the first three minutes
of the second half pushed the lead to 40-24 with 17:04 left.

"The early part of the second half they (Aztecs) kept it close,
and then we went on a run and they stopped making shots," said New
Mexico coach Don Flanagan.

Montgomery, the Lobos' point guard, had a solid game with 11
points and team highs of six assists and seven rebounds. She and
Letz, who finished with nine points, combined for six 3-pointers.

The Lobos held San Diego State to 34.5 percent shooting and the
Aztecs hit just 2 of 12 3s.

Still, Flanagan found some flaws.

"Defensively, I thought we could have done better," he said.

San Diego State lost starting center Desiree Johnson with 7:32
left in the game with a sprained left ankle. Johnson went down
under the New Mexico basket and had to be helped off the court by
teammates.

The win was the 13th straight for New Mexico over the Aztecs and
kept the Lobos within a game of Mountain West leader Brigham Young,
which won 67-64 at TCU.