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Colorado State holds off upset-minded New Mexico State

Dec 28, 2014 - 4:41 AM Las Cruces, NM (SportsNetwork.com) - J.J. Avila scored 19 points with nine rebounds and 24th-ranked Colorado State continued the best start in school history with a 58-57 overtime win over New Mexico State on Saturday.

Stanton Kidd chipped in 13 points for the Rams (13-0), who finished off their non-conference slate with a perfect record heading into a duel with Boise State to open Mountain West play on New Year's Eve.

Remi Barry deposited 14 points, Pascal Siakam had 13 points and 13 rebounds and Ian Baker added 12 points for the Aggies (5-9), losers in four of their last five.

Siakam netted a three-point play with 1:20 remaining in the extra session before John Gillon made a layup to cut the Rams' deficit to 57-56. Avila then came up with a big offensive rebound and putback after a Daniel Bejarano miss to give Colorado State the lead.

New Mexico State received a pair of offensive rebounds at the other end, but Siakam missed two at the line. Avila came down with the rebound and returned the favor by missing a pair of free throws with 2.1 seconds left.

Out of a timeout, the Aggies' last effort was denied as the inbound pass was thrown out of bounds and the Rams held on.

Johnathon Wilkins made back-to-back shots as part of a 10-2 run to open the second half for New Mexico State, which built a 30-24 lead in the process.

The Rams slowly chipped away at the small deficit, and Kidd's layup with under seven minutes to play tied the game at 42-42. Avila then gave the visitors the lead with a layup over a minute later.

It was tied at 48-48 with over a minute left when DK Eldridge picked up a steal at midcourt, was fouled but missed both attempts from the line. Gillon then converted 1-of-2 from the stripe at the other end to put the Rams in front.

Barry missed a jumper on the Aggies' ensuing possession and Colorado State gained possession after scrum for the ball on the floor. Gillon proceeded to knock down both free throws with 9.8 seconds left, then Baker got a friendly roll on a 3-point attempt to tie the game at 51-51 and send it to overtime.

Colorado State shot 32 percent from the floor, while New Mexico State made 30 percent of its shots, and the Rams brought a 22-20 lead into the locker room at half.

Game Notes

The Rams shot 35 percent from the floor for the game, while the Aggies made 38 percent of their shots ... Bejarano went 0-for-10 from the floor but had a team-high five assists in the win ... There were 11 ties and seven lead changes.