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UTEP women's basketball: Second half rally helps UTEP hold off North Texas

In conference play it doesn't have to be pretty, just play defense, rebound, survive and move on.

UTEP used a second half run to grab a lead, and withstood a last ditch effort in the final minutes to escape with conference win number one thanks to a 60-58 triumph against visiting North Texas.

A rough offensive first half for the Miners saw the Orange and Blue go on a field goal drought in the final 3:41 of the first half, and trailed the Mean Green 30-25 at halftime.

Cameasha Turner who finished with 13 points on the evening led a second half charge that gave UTEP momentum, and eventually their first conference win of the season.

The Mean Green outscored UTEP 8-2 in the first 2:46 of the second half via a pair of three pointers from BreAnna Dawkins, and Candice Adams, and continued to push the issue over the next few trips.

Trailing 40-32 with under 16 minutes left, Turner knocked down a jumper to spark a 13-3 UTEP run capped off by a three pointer from Turner that gave UTEP a 45-43 lead with 9:04 to play.

UTEP sophomore Sparkle Taylor scored a game high 18 points, though North Texas answered with a 5-0 swing almost five minutes later after Terra Ellison tied the game at 53 with a jumper at the 4:28 mark of the second half.

Turner would score on back-to-back trips to put UTEP ahead 57-53 with 2:05 left, though North Texas hit a late three to pull within one, but UTEP managed hit two free throws in the final seven seconds to seal the win.

UTEP won the battle of the boards with a 36-29 advantage, and got a much needed performance from JUCO transfer Rudiane Eduardo who finished with 9 points, and five rebounds including a clutch bucket during the second half run.

Lawana Kennedy also had five rebounds, and scored 6 points, Irene Gari had 8 points and three rebounds for the Miners.

The Miners shot 46.3 percent from the field, though were 8/16 from the free throw line, and forced 19 turnovers.

Ellison led the Mean Green with 14 points, and Briesha Winn did a little bit of everything adding 11 points, seven rebounds, three assists, and four steals for the Mean Green who drop to 1-11 on the season.

Despite going 2/11 from deep, UTEP rebounded and defended their way for conference win number one, improving to 6-4 on the season, and will now host Rice Sunday 2:00 p.m. in the Don.