Miners Battle Until End in 67-65 Defeat at North Texas

DENTON, Texas – North Texas withstood a pair of UTEP attempts to tie or take the lead late to hold on for a 67-65 win on Saturday night in The Super Pit. 

Trailing by one with the ball and 14.4 seconds on the clock, the Miners (17-8, 10-6 C-USA) had Jazion Jackson take a 3-point try from in front of the visiting bench. A tremendous effort on the closeout by Jordyn Carter resulted in the attempt being partially blocked.

After grabbing the rebound, Quincy Noble then split a pair of free throws for the Mean Green (10-16, 7-9 C-USA), with Erin Wilson grabbing the missed back-end try to give UTEP the ball with 1.3 seconds remaining. 

Following a timeout, the Miners drew up a final look for Jackson, who received the inbounds pass from Avery Crouse. A fadeaway jumper over Carter rimmed off the back iron as North Texas was able to hold on. 

A back-and-forth final quarter saw the game within two points or less for all but 27 seconds of the action.

“We played great tonight and I’m proud of our team,” UTEP Head Coach Kevin Baker said. “We controlled the game until the fourth quarter, and still gave ourselves a chance to win. Tonight, we were not victims of our circumstance. We played well enough to win. In the end, we couldn’t keep them off the offensive boards.”

In her return to the school she once called home, Jackson had a strong effort with 16 points, four rebounds, two assists and two steals.

Elina Arike joined Jackson with 16 points in addition to eight rebounds and four assists.

Former Mean Green guard N’Yah Boyd netted 13 points with five assists and three boards.

Crouse had a hot start from the floor, piling up nine of her 11 in the first 6:38 of the game. She also played a key factor in the contest on the glass, hauling down a team-high nine rebounds. 

Both Crouse and Adhel Tac battled foul trouble at points on Saturday, resulting in the Miners playing significant minutes without the two starters on the floor.

UTEP was 21-of-54 (39 percent) overall from the floor and 8-of-23 (35 percent) on 3-pointers.

North Texas shot 25-of-58 (43 percent) from the field and 4-of-10 (40 percent) from distance. 

The Mean Green outrebounded the Miners 40-33 on the night, including 15-11 on the offensive boards. 

UTEP led for nearly 30 minutes of action, while neither team held a double-digit advantage at any point.

For North Texas, the duo of Noble and Tommisha Lampkin combined for 49 of the 67 points. Lampkin led the charge with 29 points and 18 rebounds in a monster effort for the double-double. Noble generated 20 points with six boards. 

Saturday marked the second game of a back-to-back for the Miners, who blew by UAB 88-61 yesterday in Birmingham before flying to Dallas to play tonight.

Next up for UTEP is a return to the Don Haskins Center next Thursday night at 7 p.m. MT to host FIU.