IRVINE, Calif. — The Weber State men's basketball team improved its record to 3-0 with an 80-72 win at UC Irvine on Saturday night in the Wildcats' first road game of the young season.
The 'Cats are now 3-0 for the first time in five years.
The Anteaters jumped out to an early 7-2 lead, but Weber State responded with a 15-3 run and wound up with a 37-32 lead at halftime.
In the second half, UC Irvine rallied back and held a two-point lead at 59-57 with under six minutes to play. That was when the Wildcats went on another run, this time an 11-1 spurt over the next three minutes, and never looked back.
"This was a hard-fought game but we got some stops when we needed, made some big shots and found a way to win," said WSU head coach Randy Rahe. "That's what you have to do on the road.
"Irvine is a very aggressive team and played very hard, but we didn't panic and made plays when we needed to."
Damian Lillard led four Wildcats in double figures, finishing with a season-high 27 points. The junior point guard also four assists and was a perfect 8-for-8 from the free-throw line.
Scott Bamforth continued his great week by chipping in with 18 points for Weber State on 4-of-5 shooting, including a pair of 3-pointers.
Senior forward Kyle Bullinger had a double-double, the fourth of his career, finishing with 11 points and a career-high 16 rebounds for WSU. Sophomore big man Kyle Tresnak finished with 10 points, and Frank Otis added seven points and seven rebounds for the Wildcats.
The Wildcats will now have a week off before playing at the St. Mary's Shamrock Office Solutions tournament at Moraga, Calif. They will face Jacksonville State on Nov. 27 and then will play either tourney host St. Mary's or San Francisco State on Nov. 28.