Southern Miss falls on the road to UTEP
EL PASO, Texas -- UTEP utilized Senior Night to its advantage in a 73-44 win over Southern Miss Thursday night in the Don Haskins Center.
It was the eighth consecutive game in the head-to-head series in which the home team won.
"Just a few weeks ago, we were taking Middle Tennessee and Old Dominion down to the wire and playing for a chance to win," head coach Doc Sadler said. "Since that time, we've seemed out of gas. The first 10 minutes at UTSA on Thursday were bad, but the final 30 minutes were some of our best. We had a lot of energy at shootaround and practice on this trip, but just haven't put it together."
Dominic Magee's driving dunk put Southern Miss within 10-7 at the 14:11 mark, but the Miners responded with an 18-5 run through the final three minutes of the half.
The Golden Eagles trailed 36-15 at the half, then scored the first five points of the second. UTEP got its lead back up into the 20s on two free-throws after the first media timeout and held it the rest of the way.
"We shot 15 three-pointers in the first half, and that's not us," Sadler said. "You're going to make and miss some shots, so you need to play defense. With eight minutes to go tonight, we were down 16-10, and the game took off and we couldn't get back in transition. You shoot three-pointers and they get long rebounds out of them."
Southern Miss (13-17, 6-11 C-USA) will hold its Senior Day (D'Angelo Richardson will be the lone honoree) on Saturday against LA Tech. Tip-off is at 4:30 p.m.
-Tyree Griffin led the way with 20 points, the eighth time this season he's had that many (team is 5-3 in those contests).
-Cortez Edwards (10 rebounds) was one point shy of his sixth double-double of the year.
-Edwards also had his ninth, double-figure rebounding game as a Golden Eagle.