Branduinn Fullove came back from a first-half knee injury to score 11 points and help UC Santa Barbara rout Long Beach State, 70-46, Thursday night in a Big West Conference game at Santa Barbara.
The Gauchos (14-12, 11-4) ended a two-game losing streak and stayed a half-game behind UC Irvine for first place. Santa Barbara plays host to Irvine on Saturday night.
"We came out tonight and had a little fire in us," said Fullove, who had to leave the game with 14:11 left in the first half after bruising his left knee in a collision with Long Beach's Darnell Thompson.
The junior forward returned several minutes later and scored six points to help Santa Barbara take a 40-24 halftime lead.
Long Beach (5-20, 4-12), falling to 0-12 in road games, was eliminated from contention for eighth place and the final berth in the conference tournament.
-- Rob Fernas
Cal State Northridge 78, UC Riverside 70 -- Senior guard Curtis Slaughter scored seven of his 21 points in overtime as the Matadors (12-13, 6-9) clinched a berth in the Big West Conference tournament with the victory in front of 1,084 at home.
Slaughter's shot from the free-throw line gave Northridge a 71-66 lead and Joseph Frazier followed with a three-point basket that finished off the Highlanders (6-15, 5-10).
Riverside's Nate Carter sent the game into overtime with a three-pointer with 0.2 seconds left.
Northridge held the Highlanders to one field goal over a 10-minute span in the second half to build a 60-51 lead. Riverside took advantage of three Matador turnovers to erase a six-point deficit in the final 46 seconds.
Carter had 22 points and eight rebounds.
"I still believe any of these eight teams can win this tournament, but you want to be playing well," Northridge Coach Bobby Braswell said.
UC Irvine 68, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo 62 -- Jordan Harris scored 18 points to lead four Irvine players in double figures at San Luis Obispo (12-12, 8-7 Big West). Irvine is 18-7, 12-4.
Cal State Fullerton 55, Pacific 52 -- Guard Fedi Holm-Hadulla made five three-point baskets to finish with 15 points and Fullerton (9-16, 7-8 Big West) won at Stockton, Calif., for the first time in 14 years. Pacific is 11-13, 6-9.