UAB Basketball Recap: Miners' defense suffocates Blazers
CUSA-fans.com has a new staff of team correspondents this season to help bring you, the fan, more detailed Conference USA sports coverage. Today, our new UAB Correspondent Joe Schillaci, Jr. brings the latest update on the UAB Blazers basketball team.
UTEP (9-6, 1-0 C-USA) came out with a suffocating defensive effort as they raced out to a 13-2 lead. UAB was limited offensively by the first half suspension of Wen Mukubu for academic problems.
UAB went on a run in the second half to cut the lead 38-32 with 17:38 remaining; however, mounting a comeback on the road against a team the caliber of UTEP is a difficult task. The Miners always seemed to have an answer for everything the Blazers did. The Miners turned up the defensive heat, produced some transition points and raced back out to a comfortable lead to win the game, 76-63.
Paul Delaney, III, led UAB with 17 points, which was followed by Jeremy Mayfield with 14 and Lawrence Kinnard with 13 points. Malik Alvin led UTEP with 18 points. Stephon Jackson and Maurice Thomas finished with 16 and 13 points, respectively, for the Miners.
UTEP coach Tony Barbee credited the win to a defensive drill called “he perfect stop”. The Miners’ practice paid off as they frustrated UAB all night.
UAB coach Mike Davis was very unhappy after the loss. Davis called the game “embarrassing” and said this game was “five steps backward for the Blazers”. Davis questioned his players’ desire to win and effort.
It will be interesting to see how the Blazers react to this defeat when they return to Bartow Arena against UCF Wednesday night.