Colorado State’s disappointing season came to an end Thursday in thrilling fashion.

The Rams — who defeated the Fresno State Bulldogs 67-65 yesterday — played their hearts out against the Mountain West top seeded, No. 20 San Diego State Aztecs today.

CSU led for most of the first half and frustrated SDSU, and the two teams went back and forth in a slugfest, but the Aztecs ultimately won 64-61.

Ironically, star point guard Isaiah Stevens was ice cold in the first half, going 0-6. But his lack of offense was made up for by fellow senior John Tonje, who scored 13 for the Rams before the break. And the story of that half was all about defense: San Diego State led by merely two, 27-25 at halftime.

That’s when the game really got going.

After an Aztec turnover, Patrick Cartier tied the game up at 31, knocking down two free throws with 16:33 to play. And for the rest of the second half, it was a back-and-forth battle. In the game, there were nine ties and 11 lead changes.

Stevens went wild for Colorado State, scoring all 16 of his points in that sensational second half. But Matt Bradley of SDSU was also hot, scoring 10 of his own in the second period.

With 2:37 to play, the Aztecs extended their lead to five points and the Rams could have folded. Instead, Jalen Lake hit a crucial 3-pointer. Then, Stevens followed with a 3 of his own, giving Colorado State the 59-58 lead with 1:42 to go.

San Diego State was able to convert four straight free throws and push their lead back to three points with only 16 seconds to play.

The Rams answered with a quick score by Stevens, a layup to find themselves down by one. After a quick foul, Nathan Mensah of SDSU went 1-2 from the free throw line.

That gave CSU another chance, down 63-61 and without a timeout, they had to do something on the fly.

Stevens pushed the ball to the front court, got himself open and shot a fadeaway jumper, but it bounced out. Cartier snagged the rebound but lost the ball as he tried to shoot.

Stevens had one more shot; down three, with 0.7 seconds on the clock, he chest-shot a 60-footer which bounced off the front of the rim.

The Rams — who finished their season 15-18 — were oh-so-close to beating the No. 20 SDSU Aztecs, a team which has never lost in the quarterfinals of the Mountain West Tournament. It was a near-perfect game from Colorado State and a truly tough way to finish their season.

It was about as perfect a game the Rams could have hoped for. They held the Aztecs to a mere 38% from the floor and both teams finished with 30 points in the paint a piece.

See highlights from the game here: