The UC Irvine Anteaters clinched the Big West Conference regular-season title and the top seed for the conference tournament next week in Anaheim and the UC Davis Aggies closed out a disappointing season with their third straight loss and seventh in their last eight games as the Anteaters hammered the Aggies 74-46 Saturday at the Bren Events Center in Irvine.
The Aggies (9-22, 4-12 Big West) hung around for awhile, getting as close as one late in the first half on Clint Bozner’s dunk, but the Anteaters (22-10, 13-3) scored the final six points of the half to go up 35-28 at the break.
As it turns out, they were just getting started.
After Georgi Funtarov scored to get the deficit back to seven early in the second half, UC Irvine ran off 13 straight points to go up by 20 and never looked back, holding the Aggies to 18 second-half points and 26.4 percent shooting for the game.
No one scored in double figures for the Aggies. Funtarov and Corey Hawkins led the way with nine points each, with Hawkins also grabbing five rebounds.
UC Davis was 14-for-53 overall, 4-for-19 (21.1 percent) from 3-point range and 14-for-20 (70 percent) at the line. UC Irvine was 28-for-60 (46.7 percent), 5-for-12 (41.7 percent) and 13-for-17 (76.5 percent).
The Anteaters also routed the Aggies on the glass by a 48-26 margin. UC Davis turned the ball over nine times, compared to 10 for the Anteaters.
The Aggies finished 10th in the 10-team Big West and did not qualify for the conference tournament, which only takes the top eight finishers.