Miners drop second straight, lose to Marshall

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Miners drop second straight, lose to Marshall

UTEP Forward Daeshianna McCants attempts to evade a player for the basket.

UTEP Forward Daeshianna McCants attempts to evade a player for the basket.

Andres Martinez

UTEP Forward Daeshianna McCants attempts to evade a player for the basket.

Andres Martinez

Andres Martinez

UTEP Forward Daeshianna McCants attempts to evade a player for the basket.

Jason, Green

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Never has the cliché “a tale of two halves” been as true as it was for the UTEP women’s basketball team as it was today at the Don Haskins Center. The Miners lost another close one against the Marshall Thundering Herd by a final score of 76-72.

The first half saw the Miners shoot 40.6% including 7-14 from behind the three-point arc. After a tough loss to #24 Western Kentucky on Thursday, that included 24 Miner turnovers, it was clear that the team was making an effort to protect the ball better. The Miners led at the half in almost every statistical category.

“I just told the team that the first half, that might have been the best 20 minutes of basketball we played this year — the first half. But, it’s a 40 minute game,” said Adams.

The second half began with freshman guard Lulu McKinney turning the ball over – one of two turnovers on the day for her and 11 in the second half for the team. On top of the turnover difference in the second half, the Miners shooting percentage also dropped to 32% while Marshall’s percentage rose to an outstanding 54.2%. Instead of closing the game out in the second half, the Miners quickly saw their lead evaporate and spent the last 13 minutes of the half trying to catch up. After the game McKinney talked about her team’s inability to close out the game.

“I feel like the team kind of just relaxed, since we had a great first half – we let them come back and punch us instead of us coming out and ending the game there,” said McKinney, who finished with 16 points.

Junior guard Cameasha Turner took her usual spot at the top of the score sheet with 18 points to go along with 7 rebounds. Midway through the second half Turner left the game for about five minutes after taking a hit to the head. The entire team struggled going 0-8 with five turnovers before McKinney broke the streak with a jumper at the 11:50 mark.

Just as it looked like McKinney was going to take over the game after hitting a much need three-pointer, she committed her fifth foul and had to sit. Another costly turnover while the team was down one point with 43 seconds left to go sealed the Miners’ fate. Coach Adams spoke about her team’s inability to finish after the game.

“We competed, just didn’t close it out – just didn’t close it out,” Adams said.

 

Jason Green may be reached at [email protected]

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