March 4, 2013
SAN DIEGO -
San Diego State (20-8; 8-6 Mountain West) will honor six student-athletes, including three scholarship players, who will be suiting up for their final scheduled appearance at Viejas Arena on Wednesday when it welcomes Air Force (16-11; 7-7 MW) to campus. Game time is set for 8:30 p.m. PT and fans are encouraged to arrive early for the pregame senior ceremonies. The game will be televised by Time Warner Cable SportsNet, with radio coverage on KOGO AM 600 and 101 KGB.
SDSU will honor Chase Tapley (4-year starter, 1,441 points - 5th all-time, 287 assists - 11th all-time), James Rahon (3-year letterwinner, 1,085 points, 123 three-point field goals), Deshawn Stephens (2-year letterwinner, 62 games, 31 starts, 60.0 percent FG shooter), Narbeh Ebrahimian (2 years in the program, 15 games), Jeremy Castleberry (listed as a junior but will graduate this Spring, 4th year in the program), and Aaron Douglas (2 years in the program, 7 games).
The group has been part of a historic run at San Diego State that has seen the program win 20 or more games eight consecutive seasons, advance to postseason play seven consecutive years (not including 2012-13) and inclusion in a program best three-straight NCAA tournaments. Tapley has a chance to become the only player in school history to play in NCAA tournaments in four different seasons. SDSU, meanwhile, has won seven straight Senior Day games.
Last Wednesday, San Diego State had a two-game win streak snapped with a 70-60 loss at No. 14/14 New Mexico. The Aztecs trailed most of the game, but cut the deficit to five points with 4:34 to play, but was unable to get any closer. In the final six minutes, SDSU cut the deficit to six on four occasions (not including the five-point deficit), but could not draw within a single possession.
Despite the loss, SDSU has still been formidable over the past month. Since Jan. 23, the Aztecs are 6-4, with four victories by at least 21 points, a fifth win by 13, and a three-point loss at Air Force (without Xavier Thames (lower back strain) and Tapley playing with a restrictive wrist brace on his shooting hand), a six-point loss at CSU (Aztecs led with less than 90 seconds), a two-point loss at UNLV (played the final 37 minutes without Rahon (right shoulder sprain)) and the loss at UNM.