SAN DIEGO — Jeremy Hemsley scored 18 points and Trey Kell had 15, including 10 in a decisive second-half run that carried San Diego State to a 70-55 victory against Utah State on Saturday, the Aztecs’ seventh straight victory to open Mountain West Conference play.
Angelo Chol added 12 for the Aztecs (14-6, 7-0 MWC), who are alone atop the conference standings.
The Aztecs led by double digits less than eight minutes into the game before the Aggies (11-8, 3-5) outscored them 20-12 the final nine minutes of the half to trail just 37-32 at halftime.
Utah State opened the second half with a 7-0 run to take the lead at 39-37, getting a 3-pointer and a jumper from Darius Perkins and a shot from the key by Julion Pearre.
With the Aggies leading 41-39, Kell scored 10 points during a 12-0 run that gave SDSU control at 51-41.
Kell, coming off a career-high 27 points in an overtime win against Fresno State, made a 3-pointer to give the Aztecs a 42-41 lead. He added a three-point play, two free throws and a layup in the run.
Shane Rector scored 15 for Utah State while Perkins had 13 and Jalen Moore 11.
San Diego took control in the game’s opening minutes with a 9-0 run that included an slam dunk by Zylan Cheatham on an alley-oop pass by Winston Shepard, and a three-point play by Angelo Chol.
The Aztecs took a 23-10 lead on a slam dunk and free throw by Dakarai Allen with 11:06 before halftime.
The Aggies outscored the Aztecs 20-12 the rest of the half. Rector scored eight points for the Aggies in that stretch, including a 3-pointer. Elston Jones had seven points, including a jump-hook, and Lew Evans hit a 3-pointer.
Skylar Spencer had four of SDSU’s six blocked shots.
Utah St.: The Aggies lost the season series to SDSU. They lost to the Aztecs at home on Jan. 2, 70-67.
San Diego St.: Forward Matt Shrigley made his season debut for the Aztecs. He tore his right ACL on July 20.
Utah State hosts Nevada next Saturday night.
San Diego State is at Nevada on Tuesday night.