Ryan Chartrand

ANAHEIM – The Cal Poly men’s basketball team saw its season come to an end Saturday night with a 94-83 loss in the championship game of the Big West Conference Tournament at the Anaheim Convention Center Arena.

The second-seeded Mustangs jumped out to leads of 13-7 and 25-18 before leading 35-30 at halftime in a game televised nationally on ESPN2, their first title game appearance since 2003.

But the top-seeded 49ers rallied with a barrage of second-half 3-pointers and alley-oop slam dunks and capitalized on a crowd of 4,130 that very much outnumbered Cal Poly’s contingent.

Cal Poly (19-11) had a historic season in which it had a winning record for the first time since 2002-03, its best Big West record ever (9-5), a 12-2 mark at home, its most wins overall since the 1991-92 season, a record for wins in a season since moving to the Division I level in 1994-95 and 13 victories in its final 16 games.

Big West Player of the Year Aaron Nixon, a senior guard, scored a team-high 29 points for Long Beach State (24-7), which goes to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1995.

Chaz Thomas led Cal Poly with 31 points.

For a complete recap of Saturday night’s game, visit www.mustangdaily.com Sunday or read the Mustang Daily print edition Monday.

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