UTEP Trounces Texas State, 81-58
Dec. 31, 2011
EL PASO, TEXAS - Kayla Thornton poured in a career-high 20 points, Gloria Brown notched her second straight double-double (10 points, 13 rebounds) and Baibe Eglite provided a spark off the bench with a season-high 11 points to help UTEP rout Texas State, 81-58, at the Don Haskins Center Saturday afternoon.
The Miners (11-2) trailed 12-8 with 10:36 to play in the first half before going on a 17-5 run on the way to taking control of the contest. Eglite fueled the sequence with a trio of three pointers, and the Bobcats (7-5)- who had won three in a row- never recovered.
UTEP carried a 41-29 lead into the lockeroom and eventually extended the cushion out to as many as 30 (72-42) before cruising down the stretch.
The overall effort allows the Miners to conclude the non-conference portion of their schedule at a dazzling 11-2. The11 triumphs rates tied as the most wins heading into the start of league action in program history, matching the effort by the 2006-07 squad (11-1).
The Miners connected on 42.0 percent (29-of-69) from the floor, including a stout 51.5 percent (17-of-33) during the first half. UTEP also knocked down its free throws, making 17-of-19. Erika Warren buoyed the efforts of Brown, Eglite and Thornton with eight points, while Whitney Houston tallied five points in her first extensive action with the Orange and Blue.
UTEP simply outworked and outhustled Texas State, which was no more evident than the 50-24 advantage in the rebounding department. The Miners racked up 22 offensive boards, and enjoyed an advantage of 26-0 in second-chance points.
Another factor was one that has been constant throughout the campaign, with UTEP receiving a huge night from the bench. The Miners' reserves tallied a season-best 55 points, nearly matching the effort by the entire TSU team.
At the other end of the court, it was another solid showing for the Miners. UTEP limited the Bobcats to 37.8 percent from the floor (17-of-45) while forcing 17 turnovers. Those miscues led to 21 UTEP points.
Jasmine Baugus scored 13 points to lead the way for the visitors. She was joined in double figures by Diamond Ford, Demi Clinch and Kelsey Krupa, who each had 11 points but no other Bobcat managed more than eight points.
UTEP will be back in action when it tips off its16-game Conference USA slate by playing at traditional rival SMU at 6 p.m. MST on Thursday, Jan. 5. The game will air on 1150 AM in El Paso, and fans can also get updates on it by following the Miners on Twitter (@UTEPWBB).