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February 1, 2009EL PASO - After losing two of their last conference home games, the UTEP basketball team won their first (87-75) Saturday night against Southern Miss at the Don Haskins Center.
On a historic night UTEP (13-8, 4-3 Conference USA) emulated a team with one goal in mind, to win.
UTEP senior guard, Stefon Jackson became Conference USA's leading scorer with 2,035 career points, a record previously held by University of Southern Florida player Altron Jackson with 2,017 points.
"It's definitely a relief it's finally over and I'm happy," Jackson said.
Jackson led the Miners with 29 points and shot 91 percent from the free throw line, making 17 of his 18 attempts. "We knew what kind of defensive and intensity we had to play with to win this game."
UTEP's front court of Arnett Moultrie, Claude Britten and Kareem Cooper came up big for the Miners, contributing 28 points and 18 rebounds.
"This is the time of the year where you want to play your best basketball," head coach Tony Barbee said.
With the win the Miners went from 6th place to 4th in conference USA. UTEP will get their first bye in conference play and receive two days off from practice. After the rest, the team will prepare for a Feb. 7 road game against Tulsa.
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Christopher Stephen Silva is a staff writer for MinerDigs.net. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.