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El Paso, TX — The UTEP women's basketball team will square off with St. Mary’s (TX) its lone exhibition game this year at the Don Haskins Centers at 4:30 p.m. MT Saturday. The contest is part of a double header, with the UTEP men's basketball team locking up with Southeastern Oklahoma State at 7 p.m.
Fans can attend both games of the doubleheader for one price. Upper reserved tickets are $8 and all other seats are $10. All Miner women's basketball season-ticket floor holders, or individuals with Pete's Passes, will still be able to receive free admission. Pete’s Pass holders will need to pick up a ticket to the games on Saturday at the University Ticket Center.
“St. Mary’s is always well prepared, they execute and play hard,” UTEP head coach Keitha Adams said. “We are excited about the game & excited about getting this season started. It will show us some things for how we can get better and are approaching this game like it is the real deal.”
The 2013-14 season, which officially tips off with a six-game homestand starting with a contest against Division II member UTPB on Nov. 8, will mark the 40th in program history. The Miners will be vying for their school-record eighth straight year with at least 16 wins. UTEP has not experienced a losing season since 2005-06.
It is coming off its fourth 20+ win season in the past seven years. UTEP finished 22-10 & advanced to the 2013 Conference USA Semifinals in spite of having lost three key players to torn ACLs. Two of those ACL victims (redshirt-sophomore guard Jenzel Nash and redshirt-senior forward Kristine Vitola) are back in the fold.
UTEP returns four starters & seven letterwinners overall from the squad while adding seven newcomers.
Sophomore Irene Gari (5.5 ppg, 3.0 rpg), junior Chrishauna Parker (9.0 ppg, 9.2 rpg & 3.9 apg) senior Kayla Thornton (15.3 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 61 steals) & senior Kelli Willingham (9.7 ppg, 2.9 apg & 2.8 rpg) return as starters from 2012-13 and sophomore Cameasha Turner (3.1 ppg, 2.0 rpg & 1.0 apg) also earned a letter last year.
Reinforcements are also on the way for the 2013-14 campaign in the form of a seven-member recruiting class. Sophomore Agata Dobrowolska (member of the junior national team in Poland), sophomore Anete Kirsteine (2012 All-Jayhawk West second team & WBCA All-America honorable-mention), freshman Anzhelika Moiseychenko (20.6 ppg, 12.6 rpg as a senior), junior Marta Oledzka (61 blocked shots as a sophomore), freshman Sparkle Taylor (2012 & 2013 Associated Press Class B All-State team), junior & El Paso Stacie Telles (2013 Western Junior College Athletic Conference Second Team, 2013 All-Region 5 team & 2012 WJCAC honorable-mention) & junior Johnishia Welles (2013 All-Arizona Community College Athletic Conference Second Team, 2013 All-Region Second Team) should provide quality depth.
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