UTEP opens three game homestand vs. UTSA Saturday

After being idle for a week, the UTEP women’s basketball team (10-5, 3-1 C-USA) will return to action at home against UTSA (6-9, 2-2 C-USA) at 1 p.m. MT Saturday at the Don Haskins Center.

“They’re a lot better than they were last year. They’re running some things now they didn’t last year. They’re moving around more on offense so they’re harder to guard than they’ve been in the past. They’ve got some young players that can really score,” UTEP head coach Kevin Baker shared. “UTSA is a very dangerous team, very much like us. I expect a really good game, a really competitive game between two teams that are kind of on the rise a bit.”

Saturday’s contest will be the first of three straight at home for the Miners. The series between the Miners and the Roadrunners dates to the 1980’s when both squads were members of the Oil Country Athletic Conference. 

The Miners are 8-3 at home, including 2-0 in league play. The Roadrunners are 1-6 on the road, but that lone road victory did come during league action. UTEP is in second place in C-USA at 3-1 in the league. The Miners have scored at least 80 points in three straight games for the first time since the 2013-14 season; they’ve never strung together four consecutive such contests.

UTEP is coming off an 87-80 setback at LA Tech on Jan. 11. The Roadrunners fell, 82-65, at Southern Miss on Jan. 11.  

In 2018-19 the Miners were decimated by injuries and finished the year at 9-22. It is a much different story this year, with UTEP (10-4) having already surpassed its overall win total from a season ago. The Miners got off to their first 3-0 start in league play in three years and enter Saturday’s contest in second place in C-USA (3-1). Last year they began league play at 1-8 en route to finishing 5-11 in conference action.

UTSA leads the series with UTEP, 22-13, but it is even at 6-6 since the Roadrunners joined Conference USA. Last year the Miners posted their first season sweep in the series since the 2013-14 campaign, including a 77-73 home win on Feb. 23, 2019. The Miners have won three in a row against UTSA to regain momentum in the match-up. UTSA had peeled off six of seven before the current UTEP surge.

Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids, and may be purchased by calling (915) 747-5234. The game will be streamed on CUSA.TV (subscription based) and also through the 600 ESPN El Paso website with Duke Keith and Traci Miller on the call.