EL PASO, Texas – The UTEP women’s basketball team concludes action in the Sunshine State on Saturday at Florida Atlantic.
 
Game time is slated for 12 p.m. MT/2 p.m. ET in Boca Raton.
 
The Miners (12-5, 5-3 C-USA) stormed back from a 17-point deficit in a tight 72-70 loss at FIU on Thursday, while the Owls (11-6, 4-4 C-USA) took care of business in an 81-66 handling of UTSA.
 
GAME COVERAGE
Fans can watch the game at Florida Atlantic on CUSA.tv. Live stats will be available on the Florida Atlantic SIDEARM Stats Portal.  
 
SCOUTING FLORIDA ATLANTIC
This is the second season for the program under the guidance of Jennifer Sullivan. Florida Atlantic has dramatically exceeded expectations and sits in a tie for fourth in the C-USA standings after being picked to finish last in the preseason poll by the coaches. Freshman Aniya Hubbard is the star of the show for the Owls, averaging 13.7 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.5 steals per game. Four other players contribute seven or more points a game, including Janeta Rozentale with 8.8 points and 6.0 rebounds per contest. FAU is a quality rebounding team, ranking 59th in the nation and second in C-USA with 40.4 per game. Additionally, the team defends the 3-point line well, limiting the opposition to 27.9 percent shooting from the arc, the best mark in the conference. The Owls have been arguably the most improved team in C-USA from a year ago when the team went 5-25 overall and 1-17 in conference.
 
ALL-TIME SERIES VS. FLORIDA ATLANTIC
UTEP leads the head-to-head series 10-5. Dating back to Jan. 18, 2018, UTEP has won six of the last eight games in the series, which is even at 3-3 when played on FAU’s home court. Last season, the Owls upended UTEP 54-52 on an Alexa Zeph game-winning shot with 43 seconds left.
 
FEELING 22
Guard Jazion Jackson scored eight of her career-high 22 points in the fourth quarter to spark the Miners large comeback effort at FIU on Thursday. Her previous high was 20 during her time at North Texas against Rice on March 4, 2021.
 
CLOSE TO HISTORY
If UTEP would have been able to pull off the comeback at FIU, the Miners would have tied the fourth-largest comeback in program history of 17 points set on Feb. 4, 2006 in a 59-58 win at Tulane. The largest comeback in program history was 23 against Southern Miss on Jan. 22, 2014.
 
PRESSURE DEFENSE
UTEP forced 23 turnovers on Thursday at FIU, marking the eighth time this season that the Miners have forced an opponent into 20 or more. UTEP is 7-1 in such games.
 
FIGHTING ON THE ROAD
With a 4-3 mark in true road games this season, UTEP is one of three teams in C-USA with winning records away from home, joining Middle Tennessee (7-1) and Rice (5-2).
 
RUNNING POINT
In the absence of N’Yah Boyd late at FIU, Jazion Jackson served as the primary option at the point for the Miners, scoring at will on the way to 22 points and dishing out five assists to her teammates.
 
JACKSON ON DEFENSE
Jazion Jackson is fourth in C-USA this season with 35 steals, averaging 2.1 per game. She is part of a UTEP backcourt that has regularly created difficulties for opposing guards this season.
 
CRASHING THE BOARDS IN C-USA
Jazion Jackson has been active on the glass during the seven conference games to this point, averaging 7.0 per contest to rank in a tie for second in the league in C-USA tilts.
 
VALKOVA IMPACTS THE GAME
Adela Valkova made a tremendous impact in getting UTEP back into the contest at FIU, scoring six points late in the first half as the Miners cut a 17-point deficit down to 10 at the break. Valkova also had two rebounds.
 
MAJOR MINUTES
Jazion Jackson and N’Yah Boyd are fourth and fifth in C-USA in minutes per game, with Jackson playing 34.4 and Boyd 33.8.
 
KNOW THE NAME
Adhel Tac has had her best college season to date this year, posting six double-figure scoring games, three contests with 10 or more rebounds and two double-doubles. Tac has taken full advantage of her opportunities, increasing her averages from 1.4 points and 1.3 rebounds in seven minutes per game last season to 8.0 points and 6.3 rebounds in 25.1 minutes per game this time around. Tac was a three-star prospect coming out of high school where she originally went to TCU.
 
TAC ON THE GLASS
The 6.3 rebounds per game for Adhel Tac ranks tied for sixth in C-USA. 
 
SABINE SHOOTING IT
Sabine Lipe has made at least one triple in six of the last seven games off the bench. Playing on her birthday, Lipe netted eight points on Thursday at FIU.
 
WHEN PLAYING AT THE FLORIDA SCHOOLS
UTEP is 8-6 overall in games played at FIU and Florida Atlantic. The Miners are 5-3 at FIU and 3-3 at Florida Atlantic.
 
NO REBOUNDS FOR YOU
UTEP has allowed opponents to only grab 30.1 rebounds per game since the beginning of C-USA play, the lowest mark in the conference over that stretch by 4.2 per game. Florida Atlantic and Rice are second at 34.3 per game.
 
ARIKE APPROACHING MILESTONES
In her third season in El Paso, Elina Arike has scored 463 points and grabbed 296 rebounds in 64 games with 60 starts.
 
CROUSE CAREER NUMBERS
Four-year starter Avery Crouse has scored 805 points with 366 rebounds, 176 assists and 103 steals in 99 games with 98 starts as a Miner. 
 
CROUSE NEARING 100 GAMES STARTED
Avery Crouse has started 98 games in her career as a Miner, ranking eighth in program history. Kelli Willingham has the all-time record with 117 starts from 2010-14. Only seven players have started over 100 games during their time with UTEP women’s basketball.
 
NOTHING NEW WITH THE STARTERS
The starting lineup of N’Yah BoydJazion JacksonAvery CrouseAdhel Tac and Elina Arike has taken the floor to begin 10 straight games.
 
STAPLES OF CONSISTENCY
Jazion Jackson and Avery Crouse are the lone two Miners who have started all 17 games this season.
 
STILL LIMITING TURNOVERS
With just 13.9 turnovers per game this season, the Miners are keeping possession of the basketball at one of the best clips in program history. The only UTEP team to average less turnovers per contest was the 2008-09 team at an average of 13.0 per game.  
 
FREE THROW UPDATE
UTEP averages 15.4 free throws made per game, ranking 25th nationally and third in C-USA. The Miners are averaging 22.3 attempts per game, ranking 21st nationally and second in the conference.
 
AVERY FROM DISTANCE
In her collegiate career, Avery Crouse has made 82 triples, ranking her 15th in UTEP program history. This season, she has connected on 21 from downtown as she looks to eclipse her season best of 23 set in 2019-20 and 2021-22.
 
WHAT’S NEXT
UTEP does not play until next Saturday, Jan. 28 at 1 p.m. in the Don against North Texas in the 915 game for the program.
 
HOME STRETCH UPCOMING
The Miners have three straight at home following the game at Florida Atlantic, hosting North Texas (Jan. 28), Middle Tennessee (Feb. 2) and WKU (Feb. 4).
 
HOME TICKET INFO
Tickets start at $8 for regular season games while groups of 10 can purchase tickets for $5 a piece. Fans can buy single-game tickets at the Eisenberg Family Ticket Office by calling (915) 747-UTEP, visiting UTEPMiners.com/tickets, by emailing tickets@utep.edu, or by stopping by in person at 500 W. University Ave., 79968 (Monday thru Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.).