IRVINE — With five teams tied for third place in the Big West Conference entering Thursday night's men's basketball action, balance might be a descriptive word associated with the nine-team league.
But off-balance may be a more fitting assessment of the play of UC Irvine, which continued its schizophrenic tendencies in a 66-62 conference setback to visiting Cal State Northridge in front of a library-like 1,115 at the Bren Events Center.
The Anteaters (10-11, 3-4 in conference), who had been among the aforementioned five-team logjam, fell into a tie for sixth place with the loss, their first in four games. The winning streak had been extended with an upset home win over first-place Long Beach State on Saturday. But any momentum that might have created was truncated by a woeful UCI shooting performance Thursday.
The 'Eaters shot 32.3% from the field (20 for 62) and made just seven of 31 three-point attempts (22.6%). Though veteran starters Eric Wise (20 points and 12 rebounds), Darren Moore (21 points and eight boards) and Patrick Rembert (14 points and four assists), combined to make half of their 36 field-goal tries, the other six who played for the hosts were a combined two for 26 from the field (7.7%).