RIVERSIDE, Calif. -- Phil Martin scored 27 points and Robert Smith had five of his 11 points in overtime to lead UC Riverside to a 72-69 victory against UC Irvine on Saturday night.
Kareem Nitoto had 13 points and nine rebounds for the Highlanders (14-16, 7-9 Big West), who will be the No. 5 seed in next week's conference tournament. UC Riverside opens against fourth-seeded Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo in Thursday's first round.Chris McNealy scored 19 points and Derick Flowers 15 for the Anteaters (11-19, 6-10), who are the No. 7 seed and face second-seeded Cal State Fullerton on Thursday.Flowers' 3-pointer with two minutes left in overtime cut UC Riverside's lead to 69-66, but that was the last score until Martin's free throw with sox seconds left. Flowers drained a 3-pointer with two seconds remaining to make the score 70-69, but Martin added two more free throws.Travis Souza's 3-pointer for UC Irvine with six seconds left in regulation forced the extra period.