The No. 1 seed Long Beach State 49ers led the Big West Conference all season, and if they hold on for 20 more minutes they will punch their ticket to their first NCAA Tournament berth since 2007. The 49ers lead the No. 3 seed UC Santa Barabara Gauchos 36-34 at halftime Saturday night in the 2012 Big West Tournament Final at the Honda Center in Anaheim. The 49ers are looking for a bit of revenge as Long Beach State has lost each of the last two Big West Tournament finals to UCSB.
Casper Ware scored 14 points and had five assists in the first half to lead Long Beach State, who shot 44.8% (13 for 29) from the field, including eight for 19 (42.1%) from three-point range. Peter Pappageorge added eight points for the 49ers, who led by as many as nine points in the opening half.
Orlando Johnson scored nine points, had four rebounds and four assists for the Gauchos, who shot 53.3% (16 for 30). James Nunnally added nine points and four assists for UC Santa Barbara.
Long Beach State beat UCSB twice during the regular season.