LAHAINA, MAUI — After arriving on Maui Saturday afternoon and enjoying a spirited practice session at the Lahaina Civic Center on Sunday, the #17-19 San Diego State Aztecs are primed to face the Ohio State Buckeyes in each team’s opening game of the 2022 Maui Jim Maui to compete invitation on Monday at 4:00 p.m. HT/6:00 p.m. PT. This is the first Maui Invitational to be held in Lahaina since the coronavirus pandemic forced the event to be held on the mainland for the past two years.
OFF THE TEE
After opening the 2022-23 season with three straight wins, the No. 17-19 San Diego State Aztecs open the 2022 Maui Jim Maui Invitational against the Ohio on Monday, November 21 at the Lahaina Civic Center in Lahaina, Maui State.
The Aztecs and Buckeyes meet for the fourth time in school history and the first since SDSU won 83-61 in the quarterfinals of the 2003 Maui Invitational. San Diego State has a 2-1 lead in the all-time series after winning had emerged victorious in the last two duels.
The state of San Diego jumped two places in the Associated Press’s top 25 poll last week, from 19th to 17th. The Aztecs, now ranked nationally for the second straight year, are fourth 17th position in a row in program history.
San Diego State enjoyed its 90th appearance in the AP Top 25 poll last week (all since the beginning of the 2010-11 campaign). Since the start of the 10/11 season, SDSU’s 90 weeks in the top 25 is the 18th most common nationwide.
SDSU has a 5-4 record in its three previous appearances at the Maui Invitational, finishing second, third, and sixth in those contests.
San Diego State, who reached the Mountain West championship game for the fifth time as head coach in 2021-22 Brian Hollander‘s five seasons seeks his unprecedented 15th Mountain West men’s basketball title. As the 2022-23 season begins, San Diego State, the most successful program in conference history, has won eight regular season and six Mountain West tournament titles.
For the fourth time since the start of the 2010-11 season, San Diego State participated in a season ranked in the preseason AP Top 25 poll. The Aztecs ranking of No. 19 in the first poll is the second-highest in program history, behind only the 2014-15 preseason poll in which it was No. 16. Since the beginning of 2010-11 and the conclusion of last week’s promotion , SDSU had appeared in the AP poll for 89 weeks, more than any other program in the state of California; ahead of UCLA (68 weeks), Saint Mary’s (44 weeks), Southern California (35 weeks), and California (11 weeks).
San Diego State owns a 78-16 record (83.0 percent) since the start of the 2019-20 campaign. That’s the nation’s third-best tally, behind Gonzaga (91-7) and Baylor (81-13).
San Diego State made its first trip outside of the Viejas Arena last Tuesday, defeating the Stanford Cardinal 74-62 at the Maples Pavilion. It was the Aztecs’ first win over Stanford in five attempts. Senior Guard Matt Bradley knocked over the first bucket of the game, a 3-pointer, and SDSU has never looked back. San Diego State shot 51.0 percent (26 of 51) and hit a season-high with eight triples.
Senior Handover Jaedon LeDee led the Aztecs by 14 points, his third double-digit scoring game in as many attempts this year. He was 6 of 8 off the floor and shooting 54.5 percent (18 of 33) for the year; three of his 11 career double-digit scoring games came in his first three games as the Aztecs.
Senior Keshad Johnson achieved a double-digit score for the first time this season, 11 points and the 13th time of his Aztec career. In games where the Oakland, California native is in double digits, San Diego State has yet to suffer a loss. He has conceded a turnover, but in the game if he has one or less handling errors, the Aztecs are 52-11 in 63 of 77 career games.
junior guard Lamont Butler recorded his second double-digit goalscoring of the season, 11 points and 13th of his Aztec career. He also had his second game in three games with six assists. And he didn’t make any sales against the cardinal. For the year, he has 16 assists and five turnovers (3.1:1 assists-to-turnover ratio).
Brian Hollander is now in his sixth season as San Diego State head coach and in his 24th season on the Aztec sidelines. In his five-plus seasons as head coach, he has led the Aztecs to four conference titles, five appearances in Mountain West championship games, an overall record of 122-40, and was named national coach of the year and twice Mountain West Conference coach of the year.
SAN DIEGO STATE IN MAUI INVITATION
In 2022, the state of San Diego will participate in the Maui Invitational for the fourth time.
The Aztecs have finished 5-4 overall in their last three trips to Maui, finishing second, third and sixth.
In 2003, the team went into game one 2-1, defeated Ohio State 83-61 and then lost to Dayton 76-71 before beating hosts Chaminade 75-67 in the third-place game of the tournament.
At the 2014 edition, #15 SDSU also tied a 2-1 record. The team opened with a double overtime win over Brigham Young (92-87) and followed that up with a 74-57 win over Pittsburgh. In the championship game, the #3 Arizona Wildcats defeated Scarlet and Black 61-59.