The UTEP Miners defeated last year’s national runner up the Texas Tech Red Raiders, 70 to 60, on Saturday, Oct. 12 in a charity men’s basketball exhibition match.
This was not a regular season game and will not count towards the regular season records for either team, but it raised money from the $10 ticket sales, that will benefit the families impacted by the El Paso Walmart shooting on Aug. 3.
After the tipoff, Texas Tech scored first, and continued to lead UTEP 30-25 at the end of the first half, due to Tech capitalizing on the 13 UTEP turnovers.
Coming out of halftime, the Miners were looking a bit sloppy, even turning the ball over five times in the first six minutes. As well as struggling to score points against Tech’s defense.
Texas Tech was then leading UTEP by as much as eight points in the second half, the score being 41-33. Deeper into second half, Tech’s defense overwhelmed UTEP, for the better part of 30 minutes, and they forced the Miners into 21 turnovers before the midpoint of the second half.
With Tech leading 35-28, UTEP coach, Rodney Terry, made the decision to put in the last player that was added to his roster, the LSL transfer, Daryl Edwards. For his Miner debut, the graduate student, exploded on the court scoring UTEP 24 points in 28 minutes.
With this newfound energy and momentum shift UTEP point guard Jordan Lathon hit 3-pointers on back-to-back possessions around the 4:00 mark, making the game 55-53 and despite Tech being still being in close proximity on the scoreboard, the Miners pulled away down the stretch.
At the final buzzer, the unthinkable happened, the UTEP Miners had come out victorious.
“The tougher team pulled away in the second half and that was UTEP,” Texas Tech Coach Chris Beard said in a press conference after UTEP closed the game on a 42-28 run.
“We’ve got to get a lot more disciplined; we were fouling too many times when UTEP was in the bonus, that’s something our teams just don’t do and can’t do,” Beard said. “A lot of things were just not our kind of discipline tonight. We had a lot of young players, a lot of new players, that’s not an excuse, just the reality of a team trying to play a game after nine practices.”
By the end of the game the Red Raiders shot 32 percent from the floor, 28 percent from 3-point range and turned the ball over 15 times.
With Tech’s Kyler Edwards leading Tech with 13 points scored and Jahmi’us Ramsey right behind him with 12.
This match between Texas Tech and UTEP was about more than just a good game and Coach Beard put it best.
“We’re praying for all the victims of this ridiculous crime, this game felt different,” Beard said. “We took the responsibility to come here very seriously….This was about more than basketball.”