ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — David Nwaba and Chris Eversley each scored 14 points Friday night as Cal Poly beat top-seeded UC Irvine 61-58 and advance to Saturday’s Big West Conference tournament finals.
Brian Bennett added 12 for the seventh-seeded Mustangs (12-19).
Cal Poly opened with three quick baskets, but UC Irvine (23-11) took a 12-11 lead on a trey by Alex Young, then pulled away on a 10-2 run. Cal Poly rallied with a 9-1 run, and Eversley’s jumper gave them a 31-29 halftime lead.
Cal Poly led 41-31 in the second after a 10-2 run, but Will Davis pulled the Anteaters to within a point, 56-55, on a layup. Kyle Odister boosted Cal Poly’s lead with a trey, then Nwaba added two free throws for a 61-55 edge. Young hit a trey, but the Anteaters missed three shots in the final 37 seconds.
Davis finished with 18 for UC Irvine and Young 11.