El Paso, TX — UTEP (25-7) will play its second straight WNIT home game when it challenges Saint Mary’s (23-9) at 7 p.m. MDT at the Don Haskins Center Monday.
- Tickets are $4 for students, $6 for general admission & $8 for floor seats & may be bought on site or by calling 915-747-5234. Fans are encouraged to arrive early with the GA-style seating.
- The victor will face Colorado (19-14) in the WNIT Sweet 16.
- The Miners, who received an at-large bid to the event, are making their first appearance in the WNIT. UTEP declined a bid in 2013 due a depleted roster as result of injuries.
- It marks the second time in the past three seasons and fourth third occasion overall that the Miners will play postseason basketball.
- Appeared in 2008 & 2012 NCAA Tournaments.
- Earned at-large bid as #7 seed in 2008.
- Beat #10 seed Western Kentucky, 92-60 (3/22/08) in the first round of ‘08 “Big Dance.”
- Bowed out with 88-54 loss at two-seed & #4 nationally Stanford (3/24/08). Stanford ultimately lost in the NCAA title game.
- Awarded a #13 seed at 2012 NCAA Tournament, in spite of 29-3 record & winning both the C-USA regular-season & tournament title.
- Faced #4 seed & #12 in polls Penn State in the 2012 NCAA First Round. Tied at the half (39-39) before eventually falling, 85-77, (3/18/12).
- Fans can stay-up-date by following the Miners on twitter (@UTEPWBB) or listening live on 1150 AM with Mark Brunner and Traci Miller.
- This will be the third straight & the ninth game in program history that both the Miners & opponent have 20+ wins. UTEP is 5-3 all time in the situation.
THIRD-BEST IN TEXAS SINCE 06-07
- The Miners have the third-most wins among all DI programs in Texas since 2006-07.
- Recent national champions Baylor (244-40) & Texas A&M (213-65) lead the way.
- UTEP has a firm grip on third (176-75).
- Lamar (159-95, 4th), Texas (153-107-5th), TCU (151-103-6th), SMU (148-100-7th), Prairie View A&M (148-111-8th), Texas Tech (136-122-9th) and Stephen F. Austin (135-111) wrap the top-10.
QUITE A RUN
- UTEP is 76-21 since the start of the 2011-12 season, including 25-7 this year.
- Have registered 54 double-digit wins in stretch.
- Only five double-digit losses in time frame.
- Aiding record were 10 winning streaks of at least three games. The breakdown is as follows:
15 game (12/31/11 through 2/23/12)
10 game (11/12/11 through 12/17/11)
9 game (12/1/12 through 1/13/13)
9 game (11/8/13 through 12/15/13)
7 game (1/22/14 through 2/15/14)
5 game (11/0/12 through 11/23/12)
4 game (3/1/12 through 3/10/12)
3 game (1/24/13 through 1/27/13)
3 game (3/8/13 through 3/14/13)
3 game (2/22/14 through 3/1/14)
- Contrast that with one three-game losing skid.
INSIDE THE SERIES
- First meeting between the programs.
- Senior Kayla Thornton secured First-Team All-Conference USA honors while also earning placement on the five-member All-Defensive squad, the league office revealed on March 9.
- Thornton, a second-team honoree in 2012 and 2013, becomes the second Miner in program history to garner at least three all-conference accolades (Jareica Hughes, four, 2007-10).
- Thornton also joins Hughes as the lone players in school history to be a two-time member of the All-Defensive squad. Thornton was also tabbed to the team last year & Hughes was in ‘07 & ‘08.
- UTEP has now been recognized on an all-conference squad for eight straight years.
- Redshirt-sophomore guard Jenzel Nash was named the 2014 Conference USA Women’s Basketball Sixth Player of the Year, the league office revealed March 10.
- It marks the third time in the past four years that the Miners have secured the award, with former standout Gloria Brown being so recognized in 2011 and 2012.
- Thornton was also tabbed to the C-USA All Tournament team, marking her second such selection during her four-year career.
LAST TIME OUT
UTEP 74, Arkansas State 64 (WNIT Round One)
- Senior Kayla Thornton poured in the second-most points (28) by a Miner in a postseason game to help UTEP advance to the second round of the WNIT with a 74-64 win against Sun Belt Conference champion Arkansas State in front of 4,500 fans at the Haskins Center March 21.
- The game was tied (33-33) at the break and the margin was one (38-37) with 18:16 to play in the contest before UTEP found another level. Spurred on by the enthusiastic crowd, the Miners peeled off 11 straight points in a span of less than five minutes.
- The Red Wolves were stunned by the surge, and never got closer than six the rest of the way out. The cushion was 10+ points over the final 10 minutes of the game, and it swelled to as many as 16.
- Chrishauna Parker buoyed Thornton with a double-double (12 points, 11 boards) while Sparkle Taylor (12 points) and Kristine Vitola (11 points) also hit double figures in scoring.
- UTEP nailed 46.7 percent (28-of-60) of its attempts & won rebounding battle, 40-35.
GETTING TO KNOW SAINT MARY’S
(23-9, 12-4 home, 8-6 away & 1-1 neutral )
- Eighth postseason appearance since 2000 & ninth in program history.
- Fifth straight time for playing in WNIT.
- High-octane attack that produces 77.1 ppg (31st nation). Aiding it is hitting 79.0% from the free-throw line (4th nation) and nailing 36.9% on threes (19th) and making
- Four players in double figures for scoring in the form of Jackie Nared (21.9), Danielle Mauldin (17.3), Kate Gaze (12.6) & Lauren Nicholson (12.4).
- Great rebounding team (+7.5-25th nation), with Mauldin (13.3) & Nared (7.5) leading the way.
- RPI of 48 & has wins at Pac-12 champions USC (34), BYU (38), San Diego twice (53), Alabama (78) and Washington (88).
- Notable alumni include the late Harry Hooper (Baseball Hall of Fame member & only man to play on four Red Sox World Championship teams), the late Tony Martin (Hollywood Walf of Fame) and Dr. Carl Wu (distinguished cancer researcher).