SAN DIEGO (Ticker) -- Tony Bland converted a layup to force overtime and made a free throw to cap a 12-point outburst in the extra period as San Diego State posted a 67-62 first-round win over Santa Barbara in the National Invitation Tournament.
Bland scored 17 points for the Aztecs (16-13), who recorded their first Division I postseason victory in six attempts.
San Diego State will take on the Texas Tech in the second round.
San Diego State's leading scorer this season with 16.7 points per game, Bland went coast-to-coast to put home a layup with just a second remaining in regulation to knot the contest, 54-54. The guard then intercepted Santa Barbara's ensuing inbounds pass, but missed a potential game-winning jumper.
Mark Hull scored six of his 28 points in overtime for the Gauchos (18-14). The forward converted a three-point play and then made his fifth basket from beyond the arc with 2:54 left in the overtime as Santa Barbara grabbed a 60-54 advantage.
Mike Mackell contributed just three points in regulation. But the Aztecs center made a pair from the line and two jumpers, tying it at 60-60 with just under two minutes to play and igniting San Diego State's 12-0 run.
Tommy Johnson, who finished with 10 points, nailed a 3-pointer with 81 seconds left to break the deadlock and give San Diego State the lead for good.
Deandre Moore then added a pair from the stripe before Bland's free throw made it 66-60 with 10 seconds left and secured the victory.
The winner of the Big West Conference regular-season title, Santa Barbara fell to 33-51 in its all-time series with San Diego State.