The UTEP women's basketball team overcame an average shooting performance and sluggish start to defeat Weber State 70-51, moving to 7-1 on the season.  The Miners shot 34.4 percent from the field for the game, including a rough first quarter where they shot 23.5 percent, making only 5 of their first 24 attempts.

The team also struggled from downtown by hitting 4 of 16 attempts, (25%) and made 24 of 39 free throws, (61.5%).  One big spark for the Miners was the return of senior and leading rebounder Ariona Gill, who was out the previous game verses Georgia State with an ankle injury.  Gill had a career-high 14 rebounds in the contest.

Senior Jade Rochelle had the game of her life coming off the the bench by setting career highs in points, 15 and added six steals.  Katarina Zec rebounded after a dismal shooting performance to conclude the Thanksgiving Classic by tallying 15 points and Katia Gallegos came up big again by contributing 12 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists.

UTEP won the boards 42-35, and had another solid defensive performance by forcing 31 turnovers, the most by an opponent in four years..  Weber State got out to an early 6-3 lead before the Miners scored six straight points to grab a 9-6 advantage with 1:38 to play in the opening quarter.  The Wildcats wrapped a 12-4 run around the quarter break to take an 18-13 lead with 6:44 left in the half.

UTEP responded by finishing strong prior to halftime on a 16-4 push, including scoring seven straight at one point, to head into the locker room with a 29-22 edge.  The Miners shot much more efficiently in the second half en route to their fourth consecutive win.  UTEP will host No. 20 Arizona on Saturday at 1 p.m.  The Wildcats, (8-0) are the highest ranked women's team to ever play at the Don Haskins Center.

You can listen to the game streaming on ESPN2 with the Iceman Brandon Cohn.



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