Miners Snap Losing Streak With 70-67 Win Over Tulsa
Despite a tense final three seconds and a missed 3-pointer by Kara Pongonis, UTEP held off Tulsa for a 70-67 win at the Don Haskins Center Thursday night.
Marta Dydek led four Miners in double figures as she scored a game-high 19 points, pulled down five rebounds and blocked three shots. Charnette Phelps had eight rebounds to go along with 16 points her most in six games.
UTEP (9-11, 4-6 WAC) snapped a four-game losing streak and defeated Tulsa for just the fifth time in 14 meetings.
The Miners shot 42.6 percent from the floor including 52 percent in the second half.
Tulsa (14-6, 6-4 WAC) was led by Emily Jaskowiak's 17 points on 6-of-6 shooting and Jillian Robbins' 16 points and nine rebounds.
Tulsa scored the game's first six points before Dydek got the Miners on the board with consecutive baskets to make it 6-4.
After the teams traded buckets for the next nine minutes, UTEP took the lead for good at 16-15 on a jumper by Jonna Launiainen. The Miners led by as many as six twice before taking a 29-24 lead into the locker room.
UTEP led throughout the second half and was ahead by 10 with 5:57 remaining and eight with 36 seconds left.
Then Tulsa made its final run.
Robbins and Pongonis each made a pair of free throws with a UTEP turnover in between. Dydek made one of two free throws to push the lead back to five, 70-65, with 11 seconds to play.
LeAnn Upshaw drew a foul on Phelps and made both free throws with six tics left. Pongonis then stole the ball from Launianen at half court, dribbled to the right wing and put up the eventual game-tying shot, only to see it hit off the front of the rim.
UTEP point guard Shalana Taylor dished out seven assists and added a career-high 12 points. Kasia Krezel played 37 minutes off the bench and chipped in 13 points and a career-high eight rebounds.
UTEP will return to action on Saturday when it plays host to Rice (13-8, 6-4) at 7:05 p.m. at the Haskins Center.