UC Irvine figured it finally had found a way to stop San Jose State forward Olivier Saint-Jean, who picked up two fouls in the first 52 seconds and had only two first-half points.
But Saint-Jean scored 24 points in the second half as the Spartans rallied from an 11-point halftime deficit to upset the Anteaters, 71-67, Saturday night in a Big West tournament semifinal game at the Lawlor Events Center.
San Jose State (12-16) meets Utah State (18-14) in the tournament championship today at noon (ESPN, delayed, 2 p.m.).
The Anteaters, who had their best conference season in a decade with an 11-7 second-place finish, end their season at 15-12.
Big West player of the year Raimonds Miglinieks scored 19 points and Paul Foster 17 for Irvine.