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UTEP Women's Basketball: Marshall starts fast, drops UTEP 79-64

The Miners drop their first game of 2016 in the first of a two game road swing.

It was just one of those nights in where nothing went right, and shots came up with nothing but iron in segments.

UTEP trailed 41-22 at the half, and shot 22.9 percent in the first half that put them in a hole that couldn't be dug out of Thursday night in Huntington, West Virginia.

In the end, UTEP shot 30 percent from the field, with a 2-of-16 mark from behind the three point line to drop their first C-USA game of the season.

Leah Scott led the Herd with 16 points, and eight rebounds, Marshall shot 45.7 percent in the game, and blocked six UTEP shots to even their conference record at 5-5.

Things were close in the opening five minutes of the game, before a Marshall run changed the fast paced, back-and-forth flow.

An 8-1 Marshall run would be capped off by a three from Scott to put the Herd ahead 16-8, then the lead would then swell to 22-10 Marshall in final minute of the quarter.

Marshall would out score UTEP 16-5 in the final minutes of the second quarter as UTEP went ice cold, and the Herd efficiently executed in transition.

The Herd raced out to a 46-22 lead in the first minute and a half of the third quarter, and despite and 8-0 UTEP run to counter the swelling margin, UTEP still trailed 49-30 at the 5:13 mark of the third quarter.

But this UTEP squad is too good to get rolled by more than 20.

UTEP would finish the quarter on a 16-4 run in the final 3:40 of the third quarter after trailing 49-30, to trim the Marshall lead to 53-46 at the end of the third.

The Miners crept within four, then five early in the fourth, but Marshall stretched their lead to 68-55 midway through the fourth, and out scored UTEP 26-18 in the fourth to secure a home win.

Sparkle Taylor led UTEP with 17 points, Jenzel Nash added 14 points, 12 rebounds, and five assists, while Lulu McKinney also reached double figures with 10 points.

An off night from both Starr Breedlove and Cameasha Turner who were a combined 5-of-20 from the field also couldn't help UTEP overcome the early hole.

A battle for first place is set for Saturday as UTEP will face WKU to break or set up a possible first place tie by the end of the weekend.