Miners split games at the Holiday Beach Classic

UTEP+beat+San+Jose+State+with+a+final+score+of+67-54+but+fell+to+Sacramento+State+63-50.+Photo+Courtesy+of+UTEP+Athletics.+

UTEP beat San Jose State with a final score of 67-54 but fell to Sacramento State 63-50. Photo Courtesy of UTEP Athletics.

Katrina Villarreal, Staff Reporter

UTEP women’s basketball (5-1) traveled to San Luis Obispo, California for the Holiday Beach Classic series during the Thanksgiving break. The UTEP Miners met the San Jose State (2-4) Spartans, Nov. 25 and the Sacramento State Hornets (5-1), Nov. 26. UTEP won the game against San Jose State with a final score of 67-54 but fell to Sacramento State with a score of 63-50.  

San Jose State 

In the win against San Jose State, San Jose led the Miners in an 11-0 start. Senior guard Jada Holland led the Spartans with 20 points. Nearing the end of the first half, the Miners were able to take the lead for the first time in the game after a layup by senior guard Avery Crouse. UTEP kept the momentum going with a 7-0 run. At halftime the score was 29-26. 

In the second half the Miners were able to keep the score close, 31-28, but after a free throw by sophomore forward Adhel Tac and a rebound by Crouse, the Miners were able to take the lead back, 42-39. San Jose regained the lead by going on a 10-0 run in the third quarter. With seven minutes to go in the fourth quarter UTEP finished with a 16-0 run to close out the game. The final score was 67-54.  

After missing the last three games, sophomore forward Elina Arike recorded 13 points and five rebounds. Junior guard N’Yah Boyd finished with 12 points, while Crouse finished with 10 points. Junior guard Jazion Jackson secured a season-high 18 points, she also had seven rebounds and three steals. The win against San Jose State marked the 200th win for Head Coach Kevin Baker in his collegiate career. 

“Today we learned to play through adversity, and I’m very proud of our team for that,” said Baker in a post-game interview. “We got off to a bad start and had to fight back for 40 minutes. Finally, we hit some key shots and made some big plays to get some separation late in the fourth. I’m glad we made the trip. This is just what our team needed.” 

Sacramento State  

In the first quarter, both teams were able to put points on the board with an 8-7 lead by Sacramento State. UTEP and Sacramento State went for a combined 0-11, UTEP was able to end the scoring drought with a two-pointer by Boyd to bring the score to 15-9. With 3:50 left in the second quarter, Sacramento State extended its lead to 27-14. At the half, the Miners were able to close the gap to 27-24 after scoring 10 straight points. 

During the second half, both teams continued to exchange points with UTEP staying within five points of Sacramento State. The fourth quarter was all Sacramento State as the Hornets outscored the Miners 20-12 after shooting 50 percent from the floor.  

“We played a great game today and I am so proud of our team,” Baker said. “We did some things on the floor that really impressed me, but we had some tough breaks, and a few things didn’t go our way today. We have played poorly and won. Today we played great and lost.” 

The Miners will be back home to take on New Mexico State University for the Battle of I-10 at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 30 at the Don Haskins Center.  

All stats and quotes courtesy of UTEP Athletics, utepminers.com. 

Katrina Villarreal is staff reporter and may be reached at [email protected].