UTEP Upsets Harlem Globetrotters 89-88
The UTEP men's basketball team ended the Harlem Globetrotters' 288-game winning streak with an 89-88 victory on Saturday at the Don Haskins Center.
The Globetrotters finished 7-1 on their eight-game 2003 college tour. Earlier in the tour they defeated Michigan State (97-83), Massachusetts (77-68) and defending national champion Syracuse (83-70).
The Globetrotters' last loss came in November, 2002 at Ohio State. Their year-long schedule includes matchups with the NABC College All-Stars at the Final Four and the New York Nationals, as well as overseas games.
"It was a lot of fun," said UTEP coach Billy Gillispie. "Our guys really came to play. We knew they were undefeated. We're going to respect everybody and not fear anybody."
The Miners fell behind 14-4 early and trailed 35-26 with 6:05 to go in the first half, but rallied to pull within two points (48-46) at the break.
UTEP took its first lead of the game at 72-71 with 9:09 remaining on a basket by Roy Smallwood.
The Miners didn't trail again, although the Globetrotters did tie the game at 73 on a pair of free throws by Cedric Ceballos with 8:05 to play.
UTEP built its largest lead of seven points on three occasions, the last at 84-77 with 5:26 left on a jumper by Filiberto Rivera.
However, the Globetrotters used an 11-5 run to cut the gap to one point (89-88) with 1:06 to go on two foul shots by Darrick Martin.
Following a pair of missed shots by the Miners, Martin misfired on a three-pointer at the buzzer while being defended by UTEP's Jason Williams.
"I think Jason can guard anybody," Gillispie said. "It's possible he can guard a center before it's all over."
Williams scored 19 points and snagged eight rebounds to lead the Miners. Rivera and Omar Thomas added 16 points each, while Smallwood and Giovanni St. Amant had 13 and 11, respectively.
Martin scored 25 points, Ron Rollerson 19 and Ceballos 15 for the Globetrotters.
UTEP shot 48 percent from the field. The Globetrotters shot 41.3 percent, including 35.3 percent in the second half.
The Miners will be home for their first three regular season games starting on Nov. 22 versus Texas Permian Basin (7:05 PM MT).