bids farewell to fans with a victory over San Jose State
By Craig Morris
March 8, 2009 | The Aggies led by as many as 20 points
early on senior night against San Jose State University
and everything seemed to be going their way until Gary
Wilkinson left the court in agony midway through the
The injury looked to be devastating as he ran with
the trainer back to the locker room to have his thumb
looked at. Wilkinson returned to action shortly after
having it set back in place and taped.
Meanwhile, the Spartans climbed back and made things
interesting. Behind strong play from Adrian Oliver with
20 points and Robert Owens with 18, San Jose State pulled
to within four points.
"We couldn't stop them defensively, so we flat
out had to outscore them tonight," said Wilkinson.
Although not a senior, Pooh Williams made some noise
of his own with 17 points and six assists. Jared Quayle
led all scorers with 21 points and added five assists
and six rebounds. Quayle had eight big points in the
final four minutes of the game. With only a four-point
lead, he hit a 15 foot jumper and then a three-pointer
to put the game out of reach.
Tai Wesley, Wilkinson and Tyler Newbold each had 13
points, putting all five starters in double figures
in the Aggies' 89-77 victory. Wilkinson also grabbed
five rebounds in his final home game as an Aggie. He
left the game to a standing ovation and finished with
an overall home record of 34-0 as an Aggie.
"I've been so blessed with my teammates, with
the coaches, with the fans and the community,"
said Wilkinson. "It means a lot to have the opportunity
and to win that many games for the community."
Coach Stew Morrill gave his praise to Wilkinson after
"Without Gary, it wouldn't have happened. He was
critical to us," Morrill said.
He added, "His inside presence, his leadership
and all of those things have been so important to us
winning back-to-back WAC Championships."
Utah State heads to Reno now where it will face the
winner of the Hawaii-Fresno State game. Although the
Ags locked up the No. 1seed, it looks as if they will
have to beat both Boise State and Nevada in order to
win the tournament.