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Poor 1st half, lack of size for Texas Southern leads to 74-62 loss to No. 17 SDSU

The Texas Southern Tigers fell behind No. 17 San Diego State by 18 points at halftime.

Hardly a surprise, considering they have two starters who are only 5-foot-9 and another who's 6-0.

"I thought the first half was a disaster," coach Mike Davis said after the Tigers played better in the second half of a 74-62 loss Monday night. "I had a lot to do with that because our guys were so uncomfortable with their size. I thought we became aggressive the second half."

Jamaal Franklin had 18 points and 15 rebounds and Chase Tapley scored 16 points to lead San Diego State.

DeShawn Stephens added 13 points and Dwayne Polee had 10 for the Aztecs (6-1), who won their sixth straight game since losing the season opener to Syracuse on the flight deck of the USS Midway. In their previous two games, they beat Southern California 66-60 in Los Angeles and UCLA 78-69 in the John R. Wooden Classic in Anaheim, SDSU's first victory over the Bruins since 1940.

It was Franklin's fourth double-double this season. He made the Aztecs' final two baskets, including a reverse slam on an alley-oop, both passes from Tapley.

Texas Southern (1-7) was coming off an 85-80 double-overtime loss at then-No. 19 Colorado on Wednesday. Omar Strong, who scored a career-high 39 points against Colorado, including nine 3-pointers, had 15 points against the Aztecs. Fred Sturdivant added 14 points.

"We came out flat in the first half," Sturdivant said. "In the second half, we just picked the energy up. The difference was we weren't taking bad shots. We were playing together, we were running in transition and doing everything we were supposed to do. We were running our system. When we do that, good things happen to us."

San Diego State jumped to a 9-0 lead, with Tapley scoring five points. The Aztecs led 16-3 on James Rahon's 3-pointer before the Tigers made their first field goal of the game, by Aaron Clayborn, nearly 10 minutes in.

San Diego State led 34-16 at halftime. Texas Southern was just 5 for 27 (18.5 percent) from the field in the first half.

The Tigers went on a 9-0 run early in the second half, with Sturdivant scoring four points, to pull within 36-27.

Raymond Penn made a 3-pointer with 10:30 left to get the Tigers within 49-41. The Aztecs ran it back out to double digits, and went up 60-45 on a layup by Tapley with 7:09 to play.