Free Admission As UTEP Challenges Rice In Nationally-Televised Contest

Thursday, February 28, 2013 - 1:11am

UTEP will have a chance to shine on national TV (CBS Sports Network) when it plays host to Rice at 7 p.m. MST Thursday.

- Free admission as part of National Girls & Women In Sports Day.
- Brent Stover (PXP) & Amy Lawrence (Color) will have the call.
- The Owls (12-14, 4-9 C-USA) went 2-0 (both home) last week.
- The Miners (19-7, 7-6 C-USA) were 1-1 last week.
- Downed Houston, 73-55, at home & fell at Memphis, 77-71.
- On cusp of 2nd straight & 4th overall 20-win season.
- 2006-07 (22-8), 2007-08 (28-4) & 2011-12 (29-4) all did so.
- In 3-way tie for 4th in C-USA. Top-4 teams get bye at tourney.
- 18+ wins for the 5th time in the past 7 seasons.
- Happened once (18-12, 1992-93) in 1st 32 years of program.
- Posted a winning percentage of .500 or better at the halfway point in league play (5-3, now 7-5) for the 7th straight year.
- Achieved 3 times in 15 campaigns before streak started.
- 10th straight season with least six league victories.
- 4 such years out of 20 before Adams (no league for 7 years).

DEALING WITH ADVERSITY
- Projected starter Jenzel Nash tore her ACL in exh. game (11/3).
- Starting C Kristine Vitola tore her ACL 3rd game of year (11/18).
- Miners adjusted & rolled to 17-3 record, including 5-2 in C-USA.
- 6th player Saidah Zuberi Allen tore her ACL at Tulane (2/7).
- She led reserves in minutes (14.1), points (3.6) & boards (5.0).
- Zuberi Allen injury left 11 healthy players (10 scholarship).
- 2-4 since that point, with fatigue for several players a factor.
Player MPG Before MPG After Diff
Cameasha Turner* 10.9 19.2 +8.3
Anete Steinberga* 27.1 34.5 +7.4
Kayla Thornton* 28.7 34.8 +6.1
Kelli Willingham* 31.4 37.2 +5.8
Chrishauna Parker* 27.8 32.8 +5.0
Irene Gari 25.1 23.3 -1.7
*Denotes starter
(Turner started past 2 games for Gari, who is battling ankle injury).

ACCOMPLISHMENTS, HONORS & MORE
- Best overall win% (66.9) of C-USA teams since joining in 2005-06.
- 162-80 overall record, including 19-7 this year, in timeframe.
- 3-0 on year vs. teams from power-league conferences.
- Most league wins & best win% of each team since 2005-06.
- 78-47 (62.9), including 7-6 on year, in C-USA only action.
- Tied for most years (4) with 10+ C-USA wins since 2005-06.
- Votes in both top-25 polls for 8 straight weeks before falling out.
- Four C-USA weekly award recipients.
-  Kristine Vitola (11/12), Kayla Thornton (12/17) & Anete Steinberga (1/14) were the player of the week while Irene Gari (12/10) was the freshman of the week.

QUITE A RUN
- 48-11 since start of the 2011-12 season, including 19-8 on year.
- 31 wins, including 8 this year, by 10+ points.
- 22-7 in C-USA games since 2011-12, including 7-6 this season.
- 64-25 overall since the start of 2010-11 campaign.
- 22 of 25 losses in that timeframe by single digits.
- One this year (at Marshall, 47-59, 2/14)
- Others were: (@UCSB,50-68, 12/11/10 & @ Houston, 61-77, 2/20/11).

UTEP & THE STAT RANKINGS
- Top-4 ranking in 8 of 14 major stat categories (chart, pg. 1).
- Pace C-USA in 2 categories (FG% def & RB margin
- 10th in NCAA in FG% def., 26th in RB margin & 46 W/L%.
- Best overall (2,479) & league-only attendance (3,381).
- Kayla Thornton is 1 of 2 players in C-USA with top-10 ranking for both scoring (15.7-6th) & rebounding (8.5.-6th).
- Anete Steinberga is 8th in scoring (14.7), 8th FT% (73.7), 9th in field-goal percentage (43.5), & 13th in rebounding (7.0).
- Chrishauna Parker is 2nd in rebounding (9.2), 3rd in field-goal percentage (50.3), 4th in assists (4.1), 9th in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.2)  & 26th in scoring (9.2 ppg).
- Kelli Willingham is 9th in three-point % (32.9), 13th in assists (3.0) & 28th in scoring (9.0).

INSIDE THE SERIES
- Rice leads the overall series, 24-13.
- Miners won at Rice, 49-48, in first meeting of year (1/24/13).
- Last 3 games in series decided by a combined 9 points.
- UTEP is 11-5 vs. Owls since start of 2006-07 season.
- 1st match-up in series occurred in 1988-89 campaign.
GOING BACK IN TIME
at Memphis 77, UTEP 71 (2/24/13)
- Kayla Thornton poured in a career-high 32 points, including 22 in the second half, but UTEP’s comeback bid fell short in a 77-71 setback against Memphis in the FedEx Forum Feb. 24.
- Memphis used barrage of triples to build 25-point lead (55-30) with 13:17 to play in the contest.
- UTEP didn’t quit, using 16-2 run to give legs to rally efforts.
- Miners got it down to 9 (69-60, 2:50) before 7-0 Memphis run.
- UTEP scored 11 of game’s final 12 points but time ran out.
- Anete Steinberga buoyed Thornton with 16 points while Kelli Willingham and Cameasha Turner each pitched in seven.
- The seven points establish a career high for Turner, who made her second straight start.
- Chrishauna Parker was held to four points but she did pace team in rebounds (10) & assists (6).
- Game wrapped up stretch of playing 3 of 4 & 4 of 6 on the road.

GETTING TO KNOW RICE
- Rice is 12-14 overall, 4-9 C-USA (11-4 home & 1-10 on the road).
- 2-4 start before winning six straight games to move to 8-4
- 4-10 since that point but is coming off consecutive home wins.
- Two players in double figures for scoring.
- Jessica Kuster (16.3/10.1) leads team in scoring/boards.
- 3 Owls with +6.0 rebounds per game.
- 10-3 when keeping opponents to less than 60 points.
- Nine postseason bids in program history.
- Went 0-1 in the WBI last year.
- Played in WNIT in 2011.
- School opened in 1912
- Notable alumni include Lance Berkman (former MLB All Star), Thomas Cruikshank (former chairman & CEO at Haliburton), Howard Hughes (once richest man in world) John Kline (US Congressman) and Peggy Whitson (U.S. Astronaut.)

 

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