Defense powers UC Irvine past Cal Poly 55-48
IRVINE, Calif. (AP) Alex Young scored 12 points and UC Irvine maintained sole possession of first place in the Big West Conference by topping Cal Poly 55-48 on Saturday night.
Mamadou Ndiaye finished with 10 points and three blocks for UCI (20-10, 11-3), which improved to 18-0 this season when holding its opponent under 40 percent shooting from the field.
Cal Poly (10-18, 6-9) made just 17 of 50 field goals (34 percent) and 2 of 14 3-point shots (14.3 percent) against an Anteater defense that came into the game ranked 7th nationally in field goal percentage defense (.381). Irvine blocked six Cal Poly shots.
Despite its defensive effort, Irvine wouldn’t shake the Mustangs until the game’s last minute.
Brian Bennett’s jumper with 46 seconds to play pulled Cal Poly within three, but a Will Davis II three-point play 29 seconds later sealed the victory.
Chris Eversley led Cal Poly with 10 points.