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Home | Tag Archives: utep volleyball

Tag Archives: utep volleyball

Twenty-Two UTEP Student-Athletes to Graduate This Week

Twenty-two past and present UTEP student-athletes will graduate from the university on Saturday, December 15.

The list includes 12 representatives from the football program, six from track & field, three from soccer and one from volleyball.

Highlighting the list of graduates are three-time first team All-American Jonah Koech and seven-time Conference USA champion Lilian Koech from track and field.

Of the 12 graduating football student athletes, 10 have made starts for the Miners (OL Jerrod Brooks, DT Sani Buckingham, RB/LB Treyvon Hughes, DB Alex JeanCharles, WR Terry Juniel, TE David Lucero, DB Nik Needham, WR Warren Redix, OL Tanner Stallings, TE Josh Weeks).

Juniel is ranked in the top-10 in school history in kickoff return yards (1,253) and Needham is UTEP’s career leader in pass breakups with 33.

Nine of the graduates have earned a spot on the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll during their careers for posting a grade point average of 3.0 or better.

 ***

Kylie Baumgartner (Volleyball)

Pleasant Hill, Calif.

Ranks third all-time for block assists (300) and fifth in total blocks (341) in program history … the only Miner to lead the team in block assists and total blocks for three consecutive seasons … participated in 105 matches and had 352 sets played throughout her career … two-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Biology major.

 

Ada Benjamin (Track & Field)

Lagos, Nigeria

Helped the women’s track and field team claim four Conference USA titles, including its first conference outdoor title … registered a personal best of 52.76 seconds in the 400m at the 2017 Conference USA Outdoor Championships, earning a spot at the NCAA West Preliminaries … one-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Entrepreneurship major.

 

Jerrod Brooks (Football)

Dallas, Texas

Offensive lineman who played in 37 games and started in 18 for the Orange and Blue … a four-time letter winner for the Miners … helped Aaron Jones gain a single-season program-record 1,773 yards in 2016 while becoming UTEP’s all-time leading rusher … double major in Communication and Criminal Justice.

 

Sani Buckingham (Football)

Tafuna, American Samoa

A two-time letterwinner … has seen playing time at tight end and in the defensive line while appearing in 17 games in the Orange and Blue … one-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Economics major.

 

Kennadie Chaudhary (Soccer)

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Played in 73 games and started 53 for the Miners … tallied 11 goals, seven assists and 29 points … scored three game-winning goals … helped the Miners to a 1-0 win over Rice at the 2016 C-USA Championships … four-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Forensic Science major.

 

Stephen Forester (Football)

Dallas, Texas

A three-year letter winner for the Miners … saw action in 18 games for UTEP … three-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Finance major.

 

Asa Guevara (Track & Field)

Chaguanas, Trinidad & Tobago

Took gold in the 400m at the 2018 Conference USA Outdoor Championships with a personal best time of 45.26 seconds … was ranked 26th nationally with a personal best of 20.51 seconds in the 200m, posted at the 2018 Desert Heat Classic … advanced to the NCAA West Preliminaries twice … Multidisciplinary Studies major.

 

Treyvon Hughes (Football)

Waxahachie, Texas

Played in 33 games and made eight starts for the Orange and Blue … rushed for 320 yards on 98 attempts … made six starts at linebacker and registered 40 tackles and two quarterback hurries during the 2017 season … Criminal Justice major.

 

Adrian Hynson (Football)

Corpus Christi, Texas

Played in 37 games on special teams and defense for UTEP … a three-year letter winner for the Miners … registered 28 tackles and a sack … Organizational & Corporate Communication major.

 

Alex JeanCharles (Football)

Winter Haven, Fla.

Played in 10 games and made one start for the Orange and Blue … a two-year letter winner for the Miners … Multidisciplinary Studies major.

 

Terry Juniel (Football)

Surprise, Ariz.

Tallied 2,209 all-purpose yards in his UTEP career …  ranked eighth in school history in kickoff return yards … finished the 2018 season ranked third in C-USA in punt return average … Multidisciplinary Studies major.

 

Jonah Koech (Track & Field)

Eldoret, Kenya

Made six NCAA Championship appearances … finished the 2018 outdoor season with a personal best of 1:46.23 seconds in the 800m, finishing sixth at the NCAA Championships … garnered first team All-American honors three times … helped the men’s cross country team claim two Conference USA titles … Management major.

 

Lilian Koech (Track & Field)

Eldoret, Kenya

Helped the UTEP women’s cross country team capture the first conference title in program history … also aided the women’s track and field squad to four Conference USA titles … earned seven Conference USA gold medals and advanced to the NCAA Championships once … Biological Sciences major.

 

David Lucero (Football)

Holtville, Calif.

Registered 20 catches for 322 yards in 2018, becoming only the sixth UTEP tight end to tally 300 yards in a campaign … played in 20 games for the Miners and made 12 starts … closed out his career with 37 receptions for 451 yards and three touchdowns … Multidisciplinary Studies major.

 

Rasmus Maukonen (Track & Field)

Palokka, Finland

Closed out the 2015 season with an NCAA Championship appearance in the javelin and finished 20th overall … launched the seventh-longest throw in program history of 73.64m in the javelin at the 2016 UTEP Springtime meet … three-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Mechanical Engineering major.

 

Nik Needham (Football)

Buena Park, Calif.

Started in 41 games for the Miners … registered a school record 33 pass breakups … concluded career with 213 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss and three interceptions … Organizational & Corporate Communication major.

 

Tyler Ragin (Track & Field)

Macon, Ga.

Helped the UTEP women’s track and field team claim four Conference USA titles, including its first conference outdoor crown … posted a personal best of 5.94m in the long jump at the Sun Angel Classic … three-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Organizational & Corporate Communication major.

 

Warren Redix (Football)

El Paso, Texas

Played in 46 games for UTEP and made 18 starts at wide receiver … registered 85 catches for 856 yards and five touchdowns … saw the field as a running back, receiver and returner … Multimedia Journalism major.

 

Sheridan Smith (Soccer)

Yuma, Ariz.

Appeared in 28 games for the Miners … logged 170 minutes in the Orange and Blue … two-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Multidisciplinary Studies major.

 

Tanner Stallings (Football)

Sterling, Kan.

Played in 17 games and made nine starts for the Orange and Blue … efforts in the offensive line helped the Miners average 185.5 rushing yards per game and 20 rushing touchdowns in 2016, while aiding Aaron Jones to a single-season program-record 1,773 rushing yards … Multidisciplinary Studies major.

 

Carmen Webster (Soccer)

Spring, Texas

Played in nine games for the Miners … assisted on the game-winning goal against Houston Baptist during her first year at UTEP … two-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll … Biology major.

 

Josh Weeks (Football)

Show Low, Ariz.

Played in 19 games and made two starts for the Miners … registered 14 catches for 221 yards and one touchdown in his career … Multidisciplinary Studies major.

Austin Named to All C-USA Second Team

IRVING, Texas – Junior outside hitter Macey Austin was named to the All-Conference USA Second Team, the league announced on Wednesday afternoon.

This is the second consecutive season that the junior has received all-conference USA second-team honors.

Austin started in all 26 matches and played in all 99 sets for the Miners this season. She set a season career high in kills with 366 (eighth in C-USA) and kills per set with 3.70 (fifth in C-USA).

The junior registered 22 double-digit kill outings, along with eight double-doubles. The outside hitter put on a show against Illinois-Chicago (8/31) when she recorded 23 kills and 14 digs in a five-set victory over the Flames. In the opening match of the season versus Incarnate Word, the outside hitter locked in 23 kills in the win which rates as the fourth-most kills in a four-set match by any C-USA player this season.

Austin became only the 10th player in program history to reach the 1,000-kill mark and rates fourth all-time in kills per set (3.25). She is the first player to lead the Orange and Blue in kills for three-consecutive seasons since Amy Sanders (2007-09).

Earlier this week the league announced the selection of Austin to the 2018 InTouch Credit Union C-USA All-Academic Team.

Macey Austin Selected to C-USA All-Academic Team

IRVING, Texas – Junior outside hitter Macey Austin was selected to the 2018 InTouch Credit Union C-USA All-Academic Team, the league announced on Tuesday afternoon.

Austin started in all 26 matches and played in all 99 sets for the Miners this season. She set a season career high in kills with 366 (eighth in C-USA) and kills per set with 3.70 (fifth in C-USA).

The junior registered 22 double-digit kill outings, along with eight double-doubles. Her best performance of the season came against Illinois-Chicago (8/31) when she recorded 23 kills and 14 digs in a five-set victory over the Flames.

The Keller, Texas, native boasts a 3.95 GPA majoring in kinesiology. She is a two-time C-USA Commissioner’s Academic Medal recipient (2017 & 2018) and C-USA Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll honoree (2017 & 2018).

Austin became only the 10th player in program history to reach the 1,000-kill mark, and rates fourth all-time in kills per set (3.25).

She is the first player to lead the Orange and Blue in kills for three-consecutive seasons (2016, 17 and 18) since Amy Sanders (2007, 08 and 09).

UTEP Volleyball Adds Coronado’s Sofia Sifuentes For 2019 Season

On Tuesday, the UTEP volleyball team announced the addition of defensive specialist/libero Sofia Sifuentes on Tuesday afternoon.

Sifuentes, a native of El Paso, Texas, played her high school career at Coronado High School. In her senior year she helped lead the T-Birds to a 36-7 record, earning a district championship and a Regional Semifinal appearance in the state playoffs.

She is a three-year letter winner at Coronado, and during her senior campaign the defensive specialist accumulated 271 digs, 2.4 digs per set and 21 aces. She produced six double-digit dig performances, and registered a career-high 16 digs in a four-set victory over Midland (9/15).

Sifuentes is the granddaughter of legendary volleyball head coach Norman Brandl, who produced the second most wins (355) in UTEP history by any head coach. Her mother, Chris Brandl, played at UTEP from 1988-1991, and recorded the most assists (4,210) and aces (148) by any player in program history.

“I chose UTEP to continue my volleyball career following in my mother’s footsteps. The location of the campus grants me the opportunity to study biology in depth, while remaining minutes away from my family at home.” Sifuentes said

Watts Out: UTEP Announces Change in Leadership With Volleyball Program

UTEP Director of Athletics Jim Senter announced on Monday that volleyball head coach Holly Watts will not return for the 2019 season.

“While the hard work and dedication is unquestioned, the results on the court did not meet expectations under Holly’s leadership,” Senter said.  “We thank her for her service to UTEP and wish her well in the future.”

Watts finishes her UTEP tenure with a record of 48-127, including a 24-64 mark in Conference USA play.

The Miners last posted double-digit victories (14) in her first season as head coach in 2013.

UTEP qualified for the Conference USA Tournament twice in her six seasons as head coach, in 2013 and 2016.  The Miners finished 5-21 in 2018 with a 2-12 C-USA record.

A native of Devine, Texas, Watts played at Texas from 1989-93 and was elected the team’s Most Valuable Player in 1993. Watts also played one season for the Texas basketball team (1993-94), averaging 15.4 minutes, 7.5 points, and 5.6 rebounds, with a .593 field goal percentage. Her efforts helped the Longhorns to an SWC title and top-25 ranking.

She began her coaching career at the University of Texas at Arlington (1994-96), while also founding and coaching the Texas Impact Volleyball Club team during that time. Watts moved on to Arkansas in 1996. The next 12 years (1996-2007) saw the Lady Razorbacks fashion a 272-129 mark, including 138-56 in the Southeastern Conference.

A national search will begin immediately to hire her successor.

UTEP Volleyball Drops Match at North Texas

The UTEP volleyball team (5-20, 2-11 C-USA) fell at North Texas (14-15, 10-3 C-USA) in four sets (16-25, 25-20, 9-25, 17-25), on Thursday evening.

Macey Austin was a standout in Thursday night’s match with 18 kills, hitting at a .325 clip and adding six digs. Austin produced a remarkable second set, tallying 10 kills to boost the Miners to the set victory.

Kristen Fritsche notched 32 assists and eight digs, while Briana Bustillos paced UTEP with 15 digs. Martine Kragholm helped the Orange and Blue out block the Mean Green with six total blocks on the night.

The Miners and Mean Green had back and forth action to begin the first set. With the score tied at 8-8, North Texas would string together a 7-1 run that gave it a 15-9 advantage on its home court. The run gave the Mean Green all of the cushion they needed to secure the set, 25-16.

Austin asserted her dominance in the second set with 10 kills, as her teammates could sense she was in the zone. Her effort helped the Miners claim the set, 25-20.

North Texas in the third set built up a large run that allowed it to control the entirety of the game, 25-9.

The Mean Green picked up where they left off in the third set, taking control early and throughout the fourth set. The Miners fought hard behind stellar and strong play from Austin, but ultimately fell,

Net Notes

  • Macey Austin recorded her 994th kill of her career, only needing six to reach the 1,000 kill plateau
  • The Miners will hit the road for the final match of the season against UTSA (18-7, 10-3 C-USA) on Saturday at 11 a.m. MT.

UTEP Volleyball Sweeps 49ers on Senior Day

The UTEP volleyball team (4-19, 1-10 C-USA) sweeps Charlotte (19-4, 10-0 C-USA) in five sets (25-21, 26-24, 25-15), on Sunday afternoon at Memorial Gym.

Macey Austin led the way for UTEP with a double-double (14 kills and 12 digs). Serena Patterson locked in nine kills and 13 digs, while Cheyenne Jones added nine kills and five total blocks.

In their final match of their careers in Memorial Gym seniors Maddie Morgan, Kylie Baumgartner and Ashley Grzebeniak produced winning performances. Morgan recorded seven kills and four total blocks and Baumgartner tallied four kills and two total blocks.

Grzebeniak had a crucial kill in the final stages of the deciding third set that secured the victory for the Miners. Setter Kristen Fritsche distributed 38 assists to her teammates and Briana Bustillos dug a team-high 17 balls.

The Miners came out firing on all cylinders in the first set, beginning with a 4-1 advantage, led by three kills from Austin and one from Baumgartner. The 49ers would respond tying up the set at 11-11.

An 8-2 run from Charlotte helped give it a 16-13 lead in the middle of the set. The Miners would immediately rectify the situation with a 6-0 run giving them a 19-16 cushion. UTEP would ride this momentum to a set victory, 25-21, behind Austin’s six kills and a blistering .455 hitting percentage.

In the second set, UTEP kept up the pace with a 9-4 lead that forced an early Charlotte timeout. The Miners were producing incredible offensive efficiency, registering a .323 hitting percentage that propelled them to an 18-11 advantage. The 49ers would rally cutting the UTEP edge to three, 21-18, which forced a timeout from the home squad.

Charlotte would maintain the pressure tying the set at 23-23. The Miners would hold off the Charlotte rally and take the set, 26-24, after a kill from Jones.

Once again, UTEP came out hot with a 6-2 run to begin the third set. The Miners would build on this to develop a 16-9 advantage that was highlighted by a block assist from Morgan and Jones. The Orange and Blue would never look back claiming the set, match and Senior Day, 25-15.

Net Notes

  •  Kylie Baumgartner is now fifth all-time in total blocks (341)
  •  First home victory and sweep of the season for the Miners
  • First home-sweep victory since Oct. 29, 2017, versus Middle Tennessee
  • The Miners will hit the road for the final two matches of the season against North Texas (12-15, 8-3 C-USA) on Thursday at 5 p.m. MT and UTSA (18-7, 10-3 C-USA) on Saturday at 11 p.m. MT.

UTEP Volleyball Prepares For Final Home Match Sunday

The UTEP volleyball team (4-19, 1-10 C-USA) will play Charlotte (15-12, 5-6 C-USA) on Sunday. The game, scheduled to start at 12 P.M. MT, will mark the final home match of the season for the Miners as they face the 49ers.

Three seniors will be honored (Kylie Baumgartner, Ashley Grzebeniak and Maddie Morgan) for their careers wearing the Orange and Blue.

UTEP and the 49ers have faced off five times since Charlotte joined C-USA in 2013. The Miners are behind in the all-time series, having taken one victory (10/7/2016).

Macey Austin led the way for UTEP in the sweep over the 49ers with 11 kills. Kylie Baumgartner added seven kills and a block assist, while Briana Arellano produced 13 digs in UTEP’s dominating performance.

Freshman setter Kristen Fritsche has been the model of consistency for the Miners this year. She has amassed a team-leading 760 assists (eighth C-USA) and 223 digs (second on squad). Fritsche has earned seven double-doubles this season. She had a career match against San Diego State (9/15), when she recorded 54 assists and 11 digs and led the Miners to a 3-2 victory.

The setter was an all-tournament selection for the Omaha Challenge and SDSU/USD Challenge. The freshman provided a veteran performance against C-USA front-runner Rice. She logged 46 assists and 15 digs as the Miners nearly upset the Owls in five sets.

Hayley Meshay has also logged valuable minutes at the setter position in the latter half of the season. The freshman’s breakout performance came against UTSA (9/30) when she recorded five kills and 15 assists in the five-set thriller.

Since then she has become a staple in the Miner offense as a solid passer and has shown an excellent feel for attacking from the setter spot with 19 kills since the UTSA contest.

Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids. For more information about the team day program call the UTEP marketing department at (915) 747-6065.

 Live Stats  |  Live Stream of Game

Gallery+Story: UTEP Falls to Rice in Five Sets

The UTEP volleyball team (4-19, 1-10 C-USA) fell to Rice (19-4, 10-0 C-USA) in five sets (25-23, 25-19, 17-25, 25-27, 10-15), on Sunday afternoon at Memorial Gym.

Macey Austin and Cheyenne Jones paced the Miners with 16 kills each. Serena Patterson added 11 kills to the effort. Setter Kristen Fritsche locked in a double-double (48 assists & 16 digs), along with Macey Austin who produced 18 digs, and Patterson with 12. Briana Bustillos led the squad with 21 digs from the libero position.

At the net, Jones dominated with six total blocks, and Mallory Yost notched four total blocks. Freshman Martine Kragholm produced seven kills and two total blocks.

UTEP started out on fire in the first set, scoring the first five points of the match, highlighted by a block assist from Jones and Yost. The Miners would build on the early momentum extending the lead to 14-7 and forcing an Owl timeout. Rice would battle back attempting to keep their 11-set winning streak alive by tying the score at 21-21.

Ultimately, Austin’s offensive prowess made the difference as she notched the set point off a kill into the Owl defense, 25-23. The Miners had a staggering .311 hitting percentage for the set, behind a combined 12 kills from Kragholm, Patterson and Jones and Fritsche’s 14 assists.

In the second set, with the score tied at 2-2, UTEP tallied a 3-0 run giving them confidence on their home court. The Owls would recover, tying the set at 9-9, but from that point on the Orange and Blue would never relinquish the lead again taking the set 25-19, and putting Rice’s undefeated-conference record on the line. Austin helped UTEP receive the set victory by registering a double-double (10 kills & 14 digs).

The Owls would respond to the 2-0 set deficit by registering a wire-to-wire victory over the Miners in the third set, 25-17.

The fourth set began with UTEP scoring the first three points, behind two kills from Austin. The Miners would maintain this lead all the way up until the Owls were forced to take a timeout while being down 21-17. The Orange and Blue forced set point, 24-22, pushing the Owls backs against the wall. Rice refused to cave in tying the set at 24-24, and ultimately besting UTEP 27-25, to force a deciding fifth set.

The Owls had only been taken to five sets four times all season, and had only dropped the first two sets of a match two times this year.

Rice’s will to keep its 13-match winning streak alive was prevalent as the Owls took the set, in decisive fashion, 15-10.

Net Notes

  • Macey Austin recorded her seventh double-double of the season
  • Kristen Fritsche registered her third 45 plus assists and 15 plus digs performance of her career
  • Fritsche locked in her 750th assist of her career
  • UTEP snapped the Owls 11-set winning streak

Up Next
The Miners will play under the lights of Memorial Gym on Senior Day against Charlotte (15-12, 6-4 C-USA) on Sunday at 12 p.m. MT. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids. For more information about the team day program call the UTEP marketing department at (915) 747-6065.

Gallery by Andres ‘Ace’ Acosta, Chief Photographer, El Paso Herald-Post

UTEP Volleyball Drops Home Match to WKU

The UTEP volleyball team (4-18, 1-9 C-USA) fell to WKU (15-9, 6-3 C-USA) in three sets (22-25, 14-25, 23-25), on Friday Evening at Memorial Gym.

Macey Austin led the Miners with 13 kills and two total blocks for the match. Serena Patterson was close behind, adding nine kills to the effort. Kristen Fritsche produced 24 assists, while Mallory Yost led the way at the net for UTEP with three total blocks.

With the score tied at 18-18, after seven ties in the first set, the Lady Toppers went on a 3-1 run that gave them the separation needed to take the set, 25-22.

WKU came out in the second set on fire, tallying an 11-3 run that gave it the early edge. UTEP would fail to recover the initial deficit dropping the set 25-14.

UTEP, with its back against the wall, registered a 5-1 run to begin the third set. WKU would come back, tying the set up at 8-8. The two teams battled until the score reached 23-23. The Lady Toppers would prevail scoring the final two points of the set to claim the match, 25-23.

Net Notes

Macey Austin recorded her 300th kill of the season as well as the 1,000th point of her career

Up Next
The Miners will play under the lights of Memorial Gym against Rice (18-4, 9-0 C-USA) on Sunday at 12 p.m. MT. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids. For more information about the team day program

UTEP Volleyball Hosts Two Matches at Memorial Gym

The UTEP volleyball team (4-17, 1-8 C-USA) will come back home for two matches to take on WKU (14-9, 5-3 C-USA) and Rice (17-4, 8-0 C-USA) on Friday and Sunday.

On Friday (6 p.m. MT) UTEP will be tested by the Lady Toppers. Sunday (12 p.m. MT) will bring on the challenge of competing against Rice.

Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids. For more information about the team day program call the UTEP marketing department at (915) 747-6065.

Live Stats – LIVE Stats   |    LIVE STREAM

WKU Scouting Report

Going into the weekend, WKU is coming off of its third loss in conference against North Texas. The Lady Toppers pace the league in team service aces (131), with 32 of those aces coming from the individual conference leader Hallie Shelton.

Rachel Anderson, who heads the squad in kills (293) and blocks (79), has a career 400 blocks for the Lady Toppers. Boosting the team’s defense is Payton Frederick with 297 digs and Taylor Bebout recording 665 assists.

WKU Series Info

WKU holds a (7-0) record against the Miners all-time. The Lady Toppers have been a premier squad at the top of Conference USA since it joined the league, and was ranked as high as 20th in the nation when it played the Orange and Blue.

Rice Scouting Report

Rice is on an 11-game winning streak and maintains an undefeated record in conference. The Owls rank nationally for assists per set (eighth), kills per set (ninth) and digs per set (9th). Rice sits atop of the league in team attacks per set (37.75), digs per set (18.23), opponent hitting percentage (0.157) and in winning percentage (0.810).

Lee Ann Cunningham, who leads the team in digs (376), was named C-USA Defensive Player of the Week (Oct. 15). Other team leaders include Carly Graham (477) assists and Nicole Lennon (314) kills.

Rice Series Info

The Owls added to their series victories over the Miners earlier this season when they defeated UTEP in a sweep (Oct. 12). This matchup will be the 46th meeting between the two squads.

 

UTEP Volleyball Team Stumbles Against Middle Tennessee

MURFREESBORO, Tn. – The UTEP volleyball team (4-17, 1-8 C-USA) fell to Middle Tennessee (7-15, 2-7 C-USA) in three sets (13-25, 25-27, 24-26), on Sunday afternoon in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

UTEP was paced in kills by Serena Patterson (10), who recorded her second-straight double-double with 12 digs. Cheyenne Jones and Mallory Yost both added eight kills to the effort, with Yost boasting a .417 hitting percentage.

Kristen Fritsche registered 27 assists, while Briana Bustillos locked in 19 digs for the Miners. The Orange and Blue outperformed Middle Tennessee in digs by 10 (53-43).

The Blue Raiders jumped all over the Miners early on the first set with a 5-0 run, forcing a UTEP timeout. The Orange and Blue would be unable to recover the first set deficit in large part because of seven service aces by Middle Tennessee, 25-13.

The second set was a back-and-forth affair until the Blue Raiders took a 23-20 lead. UTEP would storm back with a 4-0 run that threatened set point. Middle Tennessee would answer and ultimately take the set in dramatic fashion, 27-25.

In the middle of the third set UTEP mounted a 5-0 run giving it the edge, 14-13, forcing the Blue Raiders to use a timeout. The two teams traded blows for the rest of the set with the score knotted up at 24-24. Middle Tennessee would capture the next two points to claim the match, 26-24.

Up Next

The Miners will play under the lights of Memorial Gym against WKU (14-9, 5-3 C-USA) on Friday at 6 p.m. MT. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids. For more information about the team day program call the UTEP marketing department at (915) 747-6065.

UTEP Volleyball Claims First Conference Victory

RUSTON, La. – The UTEP volleyball team (4-16, 1-7) defeated LA Tech (6-17, 1-7) in four sets (16-25, 25-23, 25-22, 25-23), 3-1, on Friday night in Ruston, La.

The Miners were led by Macey Austin, who registered a double-double (16 kills & 19 digs). Cheyenne Jones was right behind her with 11 kills of her own and two total blocks. Martine Kragholm led the way at the net with five total blocks and nine kills. Kristen Fritsche recorded 35 assists, as well as seven digs.

UTEP would come out of the gate in the first set with a quick two kills from Serena Patterson and Mallory Yost, 2-0. As action progressed the score was knotted up at 10 points each and then the Lady Techsters went on a 4-0 run to force a Miner timeout. LA Tech would not let up, building on that run and creating a 20-12 advantage that helped give it a comfortable lead.

UTEP would be unable to recover, dropping the set, 25-16.

The Miners were lifted early in the second set by back-to-back blocks from Jones and Kragholm that helped build a 9-4 lead. Powerful kills from Jones and Austin would keep the Lady Techsters at bay, and allow the Miners to take a 21-18 lead in the final stages of the set. With the Lady Techsters forging a comeback facing set point, 24-23, Hayley Meshay recorded an incredible solo block to even up the set count, 1-1.

There were six ties to begin the pivotal third set. The Miners would be the ones to separate themselves when they took a 20-16 lead, forcing a LA Tech timeout. This breathing room was all UTEP needed, as it claimed the set, 25-22, after a Kragholm hammer into the LA Tech defense.

The Lady Techsters began the fourth set with purpose as they jumped out to a 6-2 lead, forcing a Miner timeout. UTEP would recover after the timeout and tie the set back up at 10-10. After that point there would be 11 ties, the last of which being, 23-23. Austin and Jones would collect the deciding next two kills that sealed the first conference victory of the season for UTEP.

Net Notes

  • Austin’s 19 digs establish a career high
  • This is the first victory for UTEP since Sept. 15 (San Diego State)
  • First C-USA road victory since Oct. 30, 2016, (at Middle Tennessee)

Watts’s Thoughts
“Tonight was a team win. We did a great job of supporting and playing for each other. Lots of defense with 84 digs including double-digits by Macey (Austin), Briana (Bustillos) and Serena (Patterson).”

Up Next
The Miners will travel to Middle Tennessee (5-15, 0-7) to play on Sunday at 11 a.m. MT.

UTEP Volleyball Falls to FIU in Five Sets

The UTEP volleyball team (3-16, 0-7) fell to FIU (13-7, 5-2) in five sets (25-17, 20-25, 25-19, 19-25, 11-15), 3-2, on Sunday afternoon at Memorial Gym.

Macey Austin led the way for the Miners with a match-high 19 kills, and she also recorded a double-double with 17 digs. Martine Kragholm dominated at the net with eight total blocks. Mallory Yost also added seven total blocks at the net.

Serena Patterson registered the first double-double of her career with 11 kills and 12 digs. Captain Briana Arellano produced 10 kills and nine digs as well for UTEP.

The early stages of set one were dominated by the Miners, as they jumped out to a 10-5 lead. UTEP added to its advantage, ballooning its lead to 21-12. The Orange and Blue polished off the set behind kills from Kragholm and Austin, 25-17.

FIU and UTEP saw 14 ties in the second set. With score tied, 18-18, the Panthers opened up a 7-2 run that sealed the set victory.

The third set saw much of the same with seven ties in the early parts of the set. With the score knotted up at 11-11, the Miners went on a 14-8 run that propelled them to victory in front of the home crowd, 25-19.

A kill by Arellano tied the fourth set at 16-16, forcing an FIU timeout. The timeout by the Panthers proved useful, as they went on a 9-3 run, tying up the match at two sets apiece, 25-19.

FIU gained early control of the deciding fifth set, forcing a Miner timeout, 8-4. That advantage proved to be too much for UTEP to overcome as it dropped the set, 15-11.

Watts’s Thoughts
“We did so many nice things tonight, and battled throughout the whole match. One of the things we have really been trying to work on is consistency. The people out there did a really good job of doing that, and we had really good support from the whole team. We are looking forward to the next opportunity to get in the gym and try it again.”

Up Next

The Miners will travel to LA Tech (6-16, 1-6) to play on Friday at 6 p.m. MT.

UTEP Volleyball Drops Home Conference Match

The UTEP volleyball team (3-15, 0-6), fell to Florida Atlantic (15-4, 5-1) in three sets (25-21,7-25,23-25), 3-0, on Friday evening at Memorial Gym.

Kristen Fritsche led the squad with 16 assists, seven digs and a team-high four total blocks. Martine Kragholm and Mallory Yost both added three total blocks each.

Florida Atlantic began the match with a 4-1 run that helped seize control of the first set. UTEP would battle back and tie the set off of back-to-back kills from Macey Austin and Cheyenne Jones, 12-12. The Miners were battling in the latter stages, trailing by one point, 21-20. The Owls went on a 4-1 run, capturing the set, 25-21.

FAU tallied an 11-1 run to start the second set, and never looked back. It took the set, 25-7, and held control of the match.

The Miners came out with purpose in the third set, doubling up the Owls efforts, 14-7. FAU stormed back with a 10-0 run of its own, taking the lead, 19-17. From there both teams traded punches, but Florida Atlantic bested the Miners for the set and match, 25-23.

Up Next

The Miners will play host to FIU (12-6, 4-1) on Sunday at 12 p.m. MT at Memorial Gym. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids. For more information about the team day program call the UTEP marketing department at (915) 747-6065

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