UTEP women's basketball was able to showcase their talents against Western New Mexico in their first of two exhibition games of the season, and took home a win, 66-45, over the Mustangs on Saturday afternoon.

“I thought it was a really good scrimmage for us,” UTEP head coach Kevin Baker said. “We were able to work on some things, and I’m excited about getting better. I really liked the way our team played. There are so many things that we need to clean up, fix and do better. We’ll certainly do that.”

Baker and his squad were able to go through different lineups and rotations and dip through their bench to give all their newcomers a shot at playing against another foe. They started off with forward Jordan Alexander, guard Neidy Ocuane, forward Zuzanna Puc, forward Ariona Gill and forward Katarina Zec.

In the first quarter, the Miners simply just dipped through their bench to see what lineups worked and which rotations looked to be potential ones for the regular season. They rotated guard Jordan Jenkins and Alexa Hoy at the guard spot and both showed some stride in their play. Combo guard/forward Jade Rochelle proved to be a formidable off-the-bench prospect for the team as well.

The second quarter featured far more defensive pursuits by the Miners. Ocuane and Jordan Alexander showed some strong defensive poise, being able to draw a pair of charges before the half ended.

At the half, the Miners led 36-17, while Alexander led the way for the Miners with 10 points and Puc had seven in the first half.

Throughout the second half, Gill started to catch her stride and hit some clutch jumpers. She was versatile on the floor and stretched her game beyond the arc too. She finished the day with 14 points.

UTEP closed out the second half outscoring the Mustangs 30-28 and hung onto the win. UTEP will play host to Division II St. Mary’s (Texas) in its final exhibition game of the year on Nov. 4 at 1 p.m. Admission is free.

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