Chase Tapley scored 13 of his 24 points during a 24-3 run in the second half and No. 22 San Diego State overcame a scare to run past winless Chicago State 73-65 on Tuesday night.
Jamaal Franklin had seven of his 16 points during the big run for the Aztecs (14-2), who won their seventh straight game to continue the second-fastest start in school history. Franklin also had 10 rebounds.
Chicago State (0-16), which played to a 32-32 halftime tie, stunned the Aztecs with a 7-0 run to open the second half. Jeremy Robinson hit an inside bucket and a turnaround jumper, and a slam dunk by D'Jari Nelson had the Cougars celebrating and forced SDSU coach Steve Fisher to call timeout.
That woke up the Aztecs, who came racing back with a 10-1 run that gave them a 42-40 lead. Tapley started the run with a layup and two more baskets, and Tim Shelton and Franklin each made a layup as the Aztecs dominated inside.
Nelson scored off a rebound to tie it at 42, Chicago State's last bucket for nearly five minutes.
While the Cougars went cold, the Aztecs kept running. Tapley scored seven more points, including on a feed from Shelton off a missed 3-pointer by James Rahon, a three-point play and another layup that gave the Aztecs a 56-42 lead with 9:34 to go.
The Aztecs were tested for the first time in five games. They had cruised in their previous four games, beating UC Riverside by 25 points, Elon by 26, Redlands by 51 and San Diego Christian by 31.
San Diego State, which shared the Mountain West Conference title with BYU last season, opens league play Saturday at home against preseason favorite and No. 12 UNLV.
Matt Samuels scored 17 for the Cougars. Robinson had 14 and Nelson 11.
Chicago State is coached by Tracy Dildy, who played at San Diego State from 1985-87.
After the Cougars held early leads, San Diego State seemed to take control with a barrage of 3-pointers by Rahon and Tapley. Chicago State slowly reeled it in behind 12 points in the half by Samuels, including a 3-pointer that pulled it within four and a baseline jumper at the buzzer.