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UH basketball team falls to UC Irvine in Big West tournament

By Brian McInnis

LAST UPDATED: 08:54 p.m. HST, Mar 14, 2013

ANAHEIM, CALIF. >> A massive first-half deficit was too much for Hawaii to overcome in its first Big West tournament game, as the fifth-seeded Rainbow Warriors fell 71-60 to fourth-seeded UC Irvine today. 

A split-allegiance crowd of about 2,000 at the Honda Center saw UH get to within 10 in the second half after facing a 22-point halftime deficit. That tied UH's largest amount down at the break this season.

Despite having several opportunities thanks to a stepped-up defensive effort in the period, UH (17-14) could not get the deficit back to single digits.

The loss likely spelled the end of the season for the Rainbow Warriors. UH athletic director Ben Jay said before the game that participation in the pay-for-play CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament was unlikely, but he would not rule it out.

"We were pretty much set on winning this thing," UH coach Gib Arnold said. "We haven't talked about anything else."


UH dropped its third straight game for the first time this season, and lost its eighth conference tournament game in its last nine going back to 2005.


UCI (19-14) improved to 2-1 against UH this season after the teams split two close meetings home-and-home. The Anteaters advanced to face top-seeded Long Beach State in Friday's semifinals.

Senior swingman Hauns Brereton fouled out with 18 points, nine rebounds and four assists. Senior center Vander Joaquim had 18 points ? 16 in the second half ? and six rebounds. Junior forward Christian Standhardinger added 11 points. All of senior point guard Jace Tavita's six assists came after halftime.

That was not enough to overcome six UCI players in double-figure scoring.

After getting hammered early and looking out of sorts, the 'Bows finally made a game of it to open the second half, going on an 11-0 run to cut the deficit in half.

UCI point guard Alex Young scored on a driving layup to end the run more than four minutes into the period.

UH got to within 10 on an elbow jumper by Joaquim. The Anteaters went back up by 15, but this time the 'Bows didn't fold, getting back within 10 on a hook shot by Joaquim.

Daman Starring hit a contested, leaning deep 3 at the end of the shot clock with five minutes left to extend the UCI lead to 14. The closest UH got from there was 11.

UH couldn't hit 3-pointers to catch up, going 4-for-18 (22.2 percent) for the game. It shot 34.9 percent overall to UCI's 40.4 percent.

Will Davis II, the Big West Defensive Player of the Year, frustrated Joaquim down low in the first half.

UCI shot 14-for-24 (58.3 percent) to UH's 9-for-34 (26.5 percent) in the first half to take a 44-22 lead at the break.

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Oahuan wrote:
Mr Jay, time to fire Gib!
on March 14,2013 | 08:19PM
64hoo wrote:
even though they loss I feel gib Arnold is still a good coach remember we have 8 freshman so it is a rebuilding in progress and with better players next year coming in I feel Hawaii will hit there peak so its not all Arnold faolt its the players too. so if commenters want to pick on gib Arnold be my guess but you still won't bother me with your stupid comment about Arnold because I feel he is a good coach no matter what all you nay sayers say.. GO warriors,
on March 14,2013 | 08:20PM
bleedgreen wrote:
Hawaii basketball teams men and women, no matter the coach, year, or players, have trouble in tournament play. Just one of those things.
on March 14,2013 | 09:08PM
BTO wrote:
Great season and solid coaching job for Hawaii's Men program. The future looks bright for this young squad. Work on game management. By the time tournament comes around, good teams adjust to your schemes and make adjustments and give you what they feel is not your stregnth. This team is deserving of another post season tournament. Let see how this plays out.
on March 14,2013 | 09:15PM
visitor wrote:
Just pack it up for this year. It was a decent season, but very disappointing towards the end. Instead or improving and peaking, well, we all saw what happened. (Don't use excuse that ONE player was hurt) Change the name and the teams strangely begin to squander. Hey, we got beat by "Anteaters." Go Bows!
on March 14,2013 | 11:14PM
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