EL PASO, Texas (WDAM) _ The University of Texas-El Paso made 34-of-37 free throws, hitting its first 24 shots from the foul line, to put away the University of Southern Mississippi 76-64 Thursday at the Don Haskins Center.
The 34 makes were the second-most by an opponent against USM, topped only by 37 free throws by Tulsa University in 2011.
USM (4-12, 0-3 Conference USA) stayed with the Miners for the first 32 minutes, leading 52-51 on a 3-pointer by sophomore guard Gabe Watson with 8:21 to play.
But the Miners (10-6, 2-1) ran off a 12-1 run to grab a double-digit lead.
Watson tied a career high with 20 points and senior forward Leonard Harper-Baker scored in double digits for the first time since Dec. 7, going for 14 points and grabbing eight rebounds.
Junior wing LaDavious Draine scored 13 points, including nine on a trio of 3-pointers. The three treys tied Jimmie Floyd at No. 4 on USM’s career 3-pointer list at 143.
UTEP got 26 points from sophomore guard Souley Boum, who went 14-of-14 from the foul line. Junior forward Bryson Williams added 20 points and nine rebounds and junior forward Eric Villa scored five points and snared 11 rebounds.
The Golden Eagles will travel to San Antonio, Texas, for a 3 p.m. tipoff Saturday with the University of Texas-San Antonio.
The Roadrunners (7-9, 1-2), behind 37 points from junior guard Jhivvan Jackson, ran away from visiting Louisiana Tech University 89-73 Thursday night. Jackson, the nation’s second-leading scorer at 26 points per game, set a school record with eight 3-pointers.