Keitha Adams ends impressive year with Hall of Fame induction


Michaela Roman

Coach Keitha Adams talks about her successful coaching carer.

Edwin Delgado, Sports Editor

It’s amazing, I’m extremely honored, it’s something that I’m very thankful for, it means a lot.”

— Keitha Adams

Without a doubt the 2013-14 season for the women’s basketball season was a memorable one. The Don Haskins Center and the fans got to witness records all year long.

For head coach Keitha Adams it was a fun year, one of her best experiences and she got the icing on the cake after being inducted into the El Paso Athletic Hall of Fame for her success the past thirteen years.

“It’s amazing, I’m extremely honored it’s something that I’m very thankful for, it means a lot,” Adams said. “This is a reflection of my players, my coaching staff, UTEP and our administration. I had tremendous support to build the program, It’s an honor.”

Adams, a native of Oxford, Kansas, came to UTEP in 2001 to lead a program that was  struggling and in her first year, the team finished with a 3-25 record. She steadily manage to create a winning tradition for the program.

In her seventh season in charge, the Miners finished undefeated in conference and earned their first berth at the NCAA tournament for UTEP and defeated Western Kentucky in the first round.

In her 13 years, she has compiled a 213-155 record and led the Miners to play Rutgers at the WNIT Championship game and drawing back-to-back sellouts in their final two games.

“It was so much fun, it was electrifying,” Adams said. “There was so much energy and enthusiasm, the energy in the Haskins Center was amazing.

Kayla set records for most career points, rebounds and double-doubles, Kelli Willlingham became the Miner with the most made three-pointers and the team obtained the first and third biggest win in school history against Northern Arizona and Kansas State respectively.

“Our players really fed off the fans and I think there was a connection between our fans and our players,” Adams said. “People were leaving the arena so happy for being part of the game and helping us and I think there was a unique connection.”

Adams said that the success from this year will enable them to recruit even better and the WNIT will definitely have a positive impact for the program moving forward.

“When we bring recruits in, we are going to be able to show them footage and video and pictures and tell them how El Paso is a very passionate community that can really get on fire and be very, very loud and supportive,” Adams said.

Her accomplishments earned her the respect of the community and is now among the greatest after being inducted in the 59th class of the El Paso Hall of Fame, but despite having a great season, she know she and her players can still accomplish a lot more in the future and knows the fan base will be there to support them.

“I was the lucky one that got to be a part of that (fan support in WNIT) and witness it,” Adams said. “It’s something that I will always treasure for ever, it was a great experience.

Edwin Delgado may be reached at [email protected]