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Aggies to take on San Diego State in NCAA tournament

By: Melissa Gundersen
LAS CRUCES, N.M. -- For the third year in a row, the New Mexico State Aggies are heading to Spokane, Wash., to compete in the NCAA tournament.

On Sunday, the Aggies team members sat around television screens and learned they will play as the 13th seed nthe NCAA tournament this Thursday, taking on fourth-seeded San Diego State.

It was all cheers and optimism at the Aggies' watch party as the cheerleading team shouted, "Aggies, oh Aggies, we'll win the game and know the reason why."

"I really think we have a great chance of winning this game we just got to go out there, do what the coaches tells us and I know for a fact we'll come home with a win," said MVP Sim Bhullar.

Coming off a big win in the Western Athletic Conference against Idaho, 77 to 55, the second-seeded Aggies are the first ever school to win the WAC tournament three straight years and earn a spot on the NCAA tournament.

Since the Aggies lost their last two NCAA tournaments, however, coach Marvin Menzies said he will be looking back at last year's practice schedule and change up their strategy.

"San Diego State is a very high pressure team. Very, very good defensive team so we're going to have our job cut out for us," said Menzies. "I think it would do wonders for our program, wonders for our brand and the university and the community at large so it would be big."

Menzies said he believes the Aggies do have a good chance of winning since it's a venue they've played at before and there are team members who have NCAA experience.

"Last year was kind of like my first step toward it, just getting the feel for everything. But this year I think I'll be ready to go out and come out harder the first game," said Bhullar.

Bhullar said he doesn't want to stop at one win.

"Winning a game in the tournament is a big thing, but winning two that would be an even bigger thing for us," said Bhullar.

Menzies said the goal is to be a top 25 team. The team will rest and then hit the court hard Monday because they only have a few days to practice until game day.