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Aztecs win for absent Tony Gwynn, rallying around bobblehead to get to NCAA regionals

Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn isn't with his San Diego State Aztecs as they head to the NCAA regionals for the second straight season.

Then again, he is there.

For the better part of May, the Aztecs have rallied around a bobblehead of their coach, who is on a leave of absence while recovering from cancer treatment.

"Little Tony," as assistant coach Mark Martinez calls the bobblehead, goes to team meetings, is in the sprint line during warmups and has the perfect spot during games, right next to the bat rack.

Freshman infielder Ryan Alvarez is in charge of the bobblehead on road trips. The Aztecs, who rallied to win the Mountain West Conference tournament and an automatic postseason berth, face 2013 College World Series runner-up Mississippi State at Lafayette, Louisiana, on Friday.