A successful three-point attempt with three seconds remaining by junior guard Alarie Mayze was all that was needed for the Southern Miss Lady Eagles (15-11, 7-6 C-USA) to come away with a 64-63 road win on Saturday against UTEP.
Southern Miss jumped out to a quick 8-3 lead in the first quarter, as redshirt junior Amber Landing, juniors Respect Leaphart and Shonte Hailes and Mayze accounted for those first points. However, UTEP took the lead at the 1:25 mark in the quarter and finished the period with a 5-2 run.
In the second quarter, the Miners outscored the Lady Eagles 12-7 to come away with a 30-23 halftime lead. Southern Miss converted just 1-of-5 three-point attempts in the first half, compared to a 5-for-9 mark for UTEP in that category. Hailes led Southern Miss with seven first-half points.
The third quarter was a different story for Southern Miss. A 10-0 run to start the quarter allowed the Lady Eagles to take a slim lead 34-30 lead. The lead changed twice during the period, but Southern Miss held on for a 44-42 lead at the end of the quarter.
The score between the two teams remained close for the duration of the fourth quarter. UTEP regained the lead once again following two free throws with 3:21 remaining and led 62-59 with 19 seconds remaining.
A subsequent jump shot by redshirt freshman Kelsey Jones cut UTEP’s lead to 62-61, but the Miners responded with a free throw with eight seconds left to make it a 63-61 game. Mayze’s three-pointer with three seconds left was not only the game-winning shot, but it was also just her third successful three-point shot of the season.
Hailes, Landing and Leaphart each finished with 11 points each on the day. Landing also had a team-high seven rebounds for the Lady Eagles. Mayze finished the game with nine points on 4-of-9 shooting.
Defensively, Southern Miss took advantage of 10 steals and 22 UTEP turnovers.
Southern Miss returns to Reed Green Coliseum for a matchup against Louisiana Tech on Feb. 23 at 4 p.m. The Lady Techsters defeated the Lady Eagles 106-85 in Ruston, Louisiana on Feb. 9.