The 2012 Big West Tournament semifinals were held on Friday at the Honda Center in Anaheim. In the nightcap, the Cal Poly-SLO Mustangs (18-15, 8-8 Big West) squared off against the UC Santa Barbara Gauchos (20-9, 12-4 Big West). The Mustangs put up a good fight, but the Gauchos prevailed, 64-52.
Through much of the first half, Cal Poly held a lead and was likely entertaining visions of pulling off the upset and, perhaps, the Big West title. But UCSB went ahead 32-31 before the half and only added to their lead following the break. Gauchos guard Orlando Johnson led all scorers with 20 points in the game, also picking up four rebounds and two assists.
As expected, UCSB is once again on a collision course with No. 1 seed Long Beach St. 49ers. The teams will be competing for a berth to the 2012 NCAA Tournament.
The finals of the Big West tournament will take place on Saturday at 7 p.m. on ESPN2. Which Southern California team will be NCAA Tournament-bound?
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