Josh Fox had 10 points and 10 rebounds for the Highlanders (5-13, 2-4 Big West).
Daman Starring scored 22 points for the Anteaters (10-10, 4-3), whose three-game winning streak ended.
Alex Young's 3-pointer got UC Irvine within 56-51 with 3:55 remaining, but UC Riverside responded from the free-throw line. The Highlanders made 9 of 12 shots from the stripe in a span of 2:27, with Fox's two shots making the score 65-52 with 1:10 remaining. During that stretch, the Anteaters missed three shots and turned the ball over four times.
UC Riverside has won six of the last seven meetings between the schools.