Xavier Thames and San Diego State nearly coughed up the season after giving up a 9-2 run in the final minute of regulation to New Mexico State, forcing overtime.
But Thames and the fourth-seeded Aztecs took care of business in the extra session Thursday night to hold off the 13th-seeded Aggies 73-69 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
It was the fourth overtime game of the day -- a first for the tournament.
Thames finished with a game-high 23 points despite committing a crucial turnover at the end of regulation that kept the door open for New Mexico State.
Dwayne Polee II scored 15 points and Josh Davis netted 10 points with a game- high 14 rebounds for the Aztecs (30-4), who will face No. 12 seed North Dakota State in the third round after the Bison upset Oklahoma in overtime.
Daniel Mullings led the Aggies (26-10) with 18 points, while 7-foot-5 Sim Bhullar added 14 points with seven rebounds in the loss.