EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – UTEP women’s basketball star Katia Gallegos entered the NCAA Transfer Portal on Friday, multiple sources told KTSM.

Gallegos later confirmed the news herself on social media, saying that entering the Portal was, “by far the toughest decision,” she’s ever had to make.

“What I have decided is not easy but I am excited for what is to come and looking forward to exploring all opportunities for my basketball career,” Gallegos wrote in a post on Twitter.

A hometown hero who starred in high school at Franklin, Gallegos’ spent the last three seasons as the face of Kevin Baker’s women’s basketball program. As a COVID-year sophomore in 2021-22, Gallegos was named to the All-Conference USA second team, after averaging 11.5 points and a team-best 3.8 assists per game. She was also the only Miner to start all 29 games.

Gallegos is the third UTEP women’s basketball player to enter the Portal after what was a difficult season in 2021-22. Not only is the fan-favorite Gallegos in the Portal; leading scorer Destiny Thurman (13 ppg) and Brenda Fontana also entered last month.

The Miners entered the year with high hopes and began the season 9-2. However, UTEP went into a tailspin once C-USA play began and finished the year with a 14-15 record.

UTEP has dealt with transfers each year since Baker arrived, but Gallegos’ departure is by far the most eye-popping given her stature on the team and as a hometown favorite of the UTEP fanbase.

In 84 career games at UTEP, Gallegos averaged 11.5 points and 4.6 assists per game. Gallegos will likely be highly sought after by bigger programs around the nation, including some Power 5 programs.

Wherever she ends up, Gallegos will have two years of collegiate eligibility remaining.