SAN DIEGO -- San Diego State came up with a new trick Wednesday in its magical season.
The Aztecs (18-0, 3-0 Mountain West) were outplayed for several stretches by UNLV, yet came away with a 55-49 win on their home court.
With Duke's loss Wedneday, SDSU now has the nation's longest active winning streak at 18 games. The No. 6 Aztecs are one of four unbeaten teams and have won six of their last seven games against UNLV (13-4, 1-2).
Usually the Aztecs can count on out-quicking their opponent on both ends of the court. But UNLV matched up on the perimeter and had no trouble creating open shots. However, the Rebels shot only 36.1 percent in the game, going a dreadful 1-of-18 on 3-pointers.
The game matched the scouting reports for each team.
UNLV's quick, physical guards hindered SDSU's guards Chase Tapley and D.J. Gay, who were 3-for-17 shooting in the game. Harried into bad angles, Tapley and Gay had only three combined assists.
SDSU's front line exploited its advantages in quickness, too. The Aztecs outrebounded UNLV 42-31. The 33 rebounds from Kawhi Leonard and Malcolm Thomas alone were more than UNLV's entire team.
The game overheated in the first half when Leonard was hit hard attempting to put in a layup. Two technical fouls were called on each team.
SDSU was led by forward Kawhi Leonard (15 points, 17 rebounds) and center Malcolm Thomas (14 points, 16 rebounds). Aztecs senior forward Billy White, who is from Las Vegas, hit two 3-pointers in the second half to keep SDSU in control.