UTEP to Host C-USA Leader Southern Miss on Wednesday

Michael Perez

Feb. 20, 2012

UTEP plays a second straight game versus a first-place team in Conference USA on Wednesday when Southern Miss (22-5, 9-3 C-USA) comes to the Don Haskins Center. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. MT. The Golden Eagles and Memphis are tied for the top spot in the league standings. The Miners handed the Tigers their first C-USA home loss of the season -- while winning at the FedExForum for a second straight time -- with a 60-58 triumph on Saturday.

Wednesday is "Military Night" and the first 3,500 fans will receive patriotic UTEP flags courtesy of AT&T.

The Miners have tied their longest winning streak of the season at three games. UTEP has only two home games remaining, including on Feb. 29 versus Rice.

Sophomore guard Neil Watson is averaging a team-leading 12.2 points per game to lead Southern Miss. Junior guard LaShay Page (12.1 ppg), senior guard Darnell Dodson (11.3 ppg) and senior guard Maurice Bolden (10.1 ppg) are also averaging double figures.

The Golden Eagles top C-USA in free throw percentage (.757) and turnover margin (+2.9) and rate second in scoring margin (+8.6 ppg). Watson is first in the league in foul shooting (133-for-153, 86.9 percent) and assist/turnover ratio (2.4), and Page has been on the floor for an average of 36.6 minutes per game to lead all C-USA players.

The Miners will honor past great Kevin Hamilton at halftime of the Southern Miss game. Hamilton was a four-year letterman from 1982-86 and a member of three NCAA Tournament teams. He led the Miners to 95 wins and four Western Athletic Conference titles.

Hamilton averaged 8.9 points as a freshman and 8.6 points as a sophomore. He led the team in rebounding as a sophomore (5.3 avg.). Hamilton posted five double-doubles during his career. "Hambone" came to UTEP from the legendary Crenshaw High School program in Los Angeles.

Tickets are available by calling (915) 747-5234.



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