Shepard leads No. 24 Aztecs to 65-36 victory



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SAN DIEGO (AP) - Winston Shepard returned from a one-game suspension to score seven straight points during a 13-0 run midway through the second half that helped No. 24 San Diego State pull away from McNeese State for a 65-36 victory Saturday night.

Shepard finished with 14 points while Josh Davis had 12 points and 17 rebounds for SDSU (9-1), which won its eighth straight game. Aqeel Quinn had 12 points and Matt Shrigley 11.

Ledrick Eackles scored 13 points for McNeese State (2-9), which is in a stretch of nine games away from home in a span of 46 days.

Shepard sat out SDSU's 76-39 victory against Southern Utah on Wednesday night for what the school said were conduct issues. He didn't start Saturday night but entered the game about five minutes into the first half.

After leading just 21-18 at halftime, the Aztecs finally came to life in the second half.

With the Aztecs trailing 25-23, Aqeel Quinn hit a 3-pointer from the left corner, SDSU's first shot from beyond the arc in 14 tries, to start the 13-0 run with 14:56 to go. Shepard then scored the next seven points, on a free throw, a runner in the lane, a layup and two more free throws.

Xavier Thames ended the run with a 3-pointer for a 36-25 lead with 11:28 to go.

Shepard added a slam dunk off a missed shot with 8:47 left.

The Aztecs were lethargic in the first half, making only 7 of 29 shots and missing all 10 3-pointers. SDSU outrebounded the Cowboys just 23-22 in the first 20 minutes.

The Cowboys' last field goal of the first half was a jumper by Adrian Fields with 7:45 left that gave them an 18-17 lead. San Diego State was almost as cold, getting only a basket off a rebound by Davis and two free throws from Shepard the rest of the half.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Bernie Wilson

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