HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The University of Hawaii men’s basketball team nearly strung together their third straight comeback win, before being falling to UC Santa Barbara, 76-66, Thursday night at the Thunderdome.
The road loss snapped the Rainbow Warriors (14-7, 5-2 Big West) season-long four-game win steak.
Coupled with UC Irvine’s win versus UC Davis, the 'Bows dropped 1.5 games behind the Anteaters for the Big West lead.
However, UH still remains in sole possession of second place in the conference standings.
UCSB (15-8, 4-4 BW) led from nearly wire-to-wire and by as many as 12 points in the first half, as the Rainbow Warriors continued to stay in striking distance leading briefly in the second half, before the Gauchos ultimately pulled away.
Gaucho big man Amadou Sow was unstoppable from opening tip scoring a game-high 30 points on 12-of-13 shooting. The sophomore center led a UCSB charge that scored 48 points in the paint and out-rebounded UH, 33-23
Justin Hemsley, came off the bench to notch a team-high 13 points and five rebounds for the 'Bows. Center Dawson Carper tallied 11 points, while point guard Drew Buggs handed out eight assists.
Buggs moved passed Anthony “AC” Carter for second on the UH all-time list and with 409 career assists is now is just four assists from surpassing all-time leader Troy Bowe.
The Rainbow Warriors will now head up the coast for a meeting with Cal Poly on Saturday, Feb. 8. Tipoff for the game is at 7:00 p.m. PT/5:00 p.m. HT.