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Kayla Thornton Shines As UTEP Drops Belmont

The UTEP women's basketball team split their Puetro Rico trip, by dismantling the Belmont Bruins 88-74

For the third straight year, Keith Adams and the UTEP women's basketball teams starts a season 10-1, as the Miners rebounded from last night's drubbing by Georgia Tech to defeat Belmont 88-74.

The Miners would start fast jumping out to a 10-0 lead, that would grow to 17-5 at the 13:54 mark.

23 first half points from Kayla Thornton would give UTEP a 49-26 halftime lead, as Thornton put home a put-back rebound of her own miss right as time expired in the first frame,  finishing off a dominating half.

Thornton finished with career highs in 36 points, 16 rebounds, 4 blocks, while shooting 13/20 from the field and a perfect 10 out of 10 from the free throw line.

Molly Ernest rallied the Bruins in the second half, pouring in 17 of her 19 points in the second, including 5 treys.

Ernest would finish a 10-2 Belmont run with a three-point dagger, cutting the Miner lead to just seven at 74-67 with a little under three minutes left to play.

Though the Miners would ice the game away with some huge rebounds, owning the advantage 44-39, while shooting 26/38 from the free throw line, six in a row coming in the last minute of the game.

For the second straight game, Stacie Telles stated the Miners off with a 3-pointer for this first lead of the game, she would finish with 12 points on 3/6 shooting from the three.

Jordan Luffman had 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Bruins who put up a good fight in the second half, but the day belonged to Kayla Thornton's as her stellar senior year continues.

UTEP will enjoy the Christmas holiday with a week free of games, before returning the floor December 29th against Texas Southern at 2 PM MDT in the Don Haskins Center.