Irvine, CA (Sports Network) - Michael Wilder connected on a 3-pointer with 10 seconds to play to give the UC Irvine Anteaters a thrilling 62-60 win over the UC Santa Barbara Gauchos in Big West Conference action at the Bren Events Center.
Wilder finished with seven points, shooting just 1-of-5 beyond the arc in the outing for the Anteaters (12-11, 6-4 Big West) as the team won for the second time in as many games. Alex Young was responsible for 12 points and Chris McNealy 10 off the bench for the hosts.
The Gauchos (7-14, 3-7), losers of four in a row, were paced by Alan Williams who produced 22 points and eight rebounds before fouling out, while Kyle Boswell tacked on 15 points off the bench and Michael Bryson 12.
UCI shot an impressive 51.6 percent from the floor in the first half and even though the squad missed seven of nine chances behind the 3-point line, the Anteaters moved out to a 40-23 lead at the break.
In the second half it was UCSB that had the hot hand with 51.9 percent accuracy. Thanks to a jumper by Taran Brown with 21 seconds remaining, the Gauchos completed a late 9-0 run to take a 60-59 lead. However, Wilder was more than ready to finally break through from 3-point range shortly thereafter, giving Irvine the thrilling win.