POSTED: Tuesday, December 20, 2011 - 5:57pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, December 20, 2011 - 11:43pm
The UTEP women’s basketball team has received a pair of votes in the most-recent ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ top-25 poll, which was released Tuesday afternoon. The Miners (10-0) are tied for 32nd nationally according to the poll, sharing the spot with Michigan, Oklahoma and South Carolina.
It marks the earliest point in a season that UTEP has garnered votes in either of the top-25 polls, with the prior mark coming during the 2007-08 campaign. That year the Miners first received attention in the coaches’ poll with one vote on Jan. 9, 2008. Their initial vote in the AP poll that year was on Jan. 21, 2008, when they secured 18.
There have now been two campaigns (2007-08 & 2011-2) where the Miners have grabbed a vote in a top-25 poll, with both coming during the Keitha Adams era.
UTEP is off to the best start in program history, besting the prior standard out of the gates (7-0) during the 1996-97 season. The Miners are the first Conference USA school since 2004-05 and fifth overall to open up the campaign with 10 straight wins.
The 10-game winning streak rates tied as the second-longest active streak nationally, and UTEP is one of nine undefeated squads in NCAA Division I women’s basketball.
The poll, which started in 1986, is comprised of 31 head coaches at Division I institutions. All are members of the Women's Basketball Coaches Association.
The Miners will try to preserve their unbeaten record when they lock up with UC Santa Barbara inside the Don Haskins Center at 7:05 p.m. MST Wednesday. Tickets are just $5 for adults & $3 for kids, and may be purchased by calling (915) 747-5234.
The Gauchos (4-6) shook off a 0-2 start to the year to go 3-2 in their next five games. They are 1-2 since but the setbacks were by a combined three points (46-44 at UNLV, 12/10/11 & at NM State, 52-51, 12/19/11).