Cal Poly tops UC Irvine 61-58 in Big West semis

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- 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.

The Mustangs will face fifth-seeded Cal State Northridge in the title game after the Matadors downed No. 3 seed Long Beach State 82-77 to advance

Brian Bennett scored 12 points for the seventh-seeded Mustangs (12-19) against UC Irvine.

Cal Poly opened with three quick baskets, but the Anteaters (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.