Another Miner win against FIU Panthers


Annabella Mireles

Guard Tae Hardy tries to make a basket against Florida Internation University player.

Nicolas Maes, Contributor

The UTEP Miners (11-8, C-USA 4-4) have done it again with their win against Florida International University (FIU) (8-11, C-USA 2-6), Jan. 19. This win brings the UTEP men’s basketball team to a 4-4 conference standing and its second consecutive conference win. This also marks the 600th UTEP win in the Don Haskins Center; which was built in 1977. 

Miners’ junior forward Calvin Solomon and FIU Panthers’ sophomore forward Mohamed Sanogo tipped the ball, with the Miners taking first possession. Following an overturn to FIU, junior guard Tae Hardy stole the ball back, and sophomore forward Otis Frazier III completed the shot. 

FIU briefly had the lead over the Miners during the first half, but the Miners were able to tighten up the score and make a recovery. During this first half, the Miners scored steadily and pulled away from FIU’s reach, making it almost impossible for a comeback in the second half.  

In an attempt to slow down the Miners during the first half, FIU implemented a full-court press, but the effort did little to change the outcome of the game. Sophomore guard Carlos Lemus shot a three-pointer from the corner, but FIU sophomore guard Denver Jones responded with his own corner shot. 

Throughout the remainder of the first half, UTEP widened its lead against FIU, rebounding shots, making layups and three-pointers on the Miners side of the court. Senior guard Shamar Givance was fouled on and made both of his shots. By the end of the first half, the Miners held a 12-point lead against FIU, with a 40-28 score. 

Navigate Left
Navigate Right
  • Forward Jon Dos Anjos holds a number one with his hand after the Miners won.

  • Guard Tae Hardy tries to shoot a basket against Florida Internation University player.

  • Guard Mario McKinney Jr. looks for one of his teammates to pass the ball to.

  • Forward Jamari Sibley dunks a ball during the fourth quarter.

  • Coaches and players from the sideline celebrate after Tae Hardy dunks a ball.

Navigate Left
Navigate Right

FIU held the first possession of the second half, with Jones making a three. A timeout was called following the shot, and Solomon scored from under the hoop. FIU continued to struggle against the Miners offense, even with their continued full-court press. Solomon was able to score again and sophomore forward Ze’Rik Onyema scored for the Miners after the Miners stole the ball from FIU, bringing the score to 48-31. 

Following a pump fake, Hardy was fouled on by FIU junior center Seth Pinkney but missed both his shots. He was able to get redemption soon after, receiving the ball and dunking it, increasing UTEP’s score by six after a two-pointer scored by Solomon. The Miners continued to steal the ball and rebound from FIU, making it difficult for the Panthers to even get a shot in.  

During a FIU possession, freshman guard Dashon Gittens fouled, turning the ball over to the Miners, who ran the ball and scored once more. FIU junior guard Javaunte Hawkins response with a three-pointer, and sophomore forward Jamari Sibley scored a two-pointer from the side. 

FIU had a short-lived comeback, scoring twice against the Miners. Being unable to receive Miners rebounds. The Miners continued to dominate, with Givance scoring a three from the top of the key, bringing the score to 61-47. Otis Frazier was fouled soon after and made both of his shots. FIU took possession of the ball and sophomore guard Peter Krivokapic scored. Frazier fouled him as he went up for the shot, and Krivokapic made his one free throw. 

In the last ten minutes of the game, the Miners clearly begin to kill the game clock, keeping FIU from unnecessary possessions. Sibley dunked the ball twice close to the end of the game. The first dunk was made as the shot clock expired and it was counted. Miners proceeded to waste the last ten seconds of the game with a final score of 81-61, UTEP.  

Nicholas Maes is a contributor may be reached at [email protected]