Here’s How to Plan Your Trip to UTEP vs. NMSU Basketball on Wednesday
UTEP and NM State will have a chance to face each other in a highly-anticipated matchup on Wednesday night at the Pan American Center in Las Cruces, with a tip-off set for 7 p.m.
Fans can listen to the game on 600 ESPN El Paso and the game can be streamed on ESPN+. Voice of the Miners Jon Teicher and Steve Yellen will take the airwaves at 6:30, followed by MinerTalk.
For fans hoping to go to tomorrow's game, they are encouraged to purchase tickets in section 122 or 222, which is directly behind the Miner bench.
"It'll be our first home game in a long time," NMSU Director of Athletics Mario Moccia said on SportsTalk Monday. "We're happy for (the Battle of I-10). I'd encourage everyone to come out and watch this game in person. I think it's going to be a great game. Obviously the first game was decided by three points. I hope we get a tremendous crowd for Wednesday."
Moccia also confirmed that most of the lower bowl at the Pan Am Center is already sold out. Local businesses like 915 Tours are putting together a fan bus for those that want to go to the game, but don't want to make the drive to the game. They will be providing round trip travel to the game from El Paso to Las Cruces for $25 or $44 with the ticket included. 915 Tours will have two pickup locations, one on the east side at Cowtown Boots (5:15 p.m.) and the other on the west side at the Don Haskins Center (5:30 p.m.). After the game is over, they will drop guests off at both locations. People can reserve tickets by visiting their website or calling 915-922-7777.
About the Miners
UTEP (5-1) is currently on a five-game winning streak after sweeping three opponents in the Jim Forbes Classic last week. The Miners previously beat NM State, 67-64, on Nov. 12 at home, which they controlled much of the game against the Aggies. Currently, Tae Hardy leads the Miners with 11.8 points per game, followed by forward Ze'Rik Onyema (9.3 points, 6.3 rebounds).
The Aggies have had quite the last two weeks.
On the court, they spent Thanksgiving week in the Las Vegas Holiday Classic, where they topped San Diego (90-77) and lost to UC-Irvine (85-68). NM State has won at the Pan Am Center versus the Miners for the last 12 years. UTEP's last road win in the series came on Nov. 30, 2010. This could be the second of three matchups between the rivals, as NM State is a participant in the WestStar Don Haskins Sun Bowl Invitational (Dec. 21-22), which also featuring Kent State and NC A&T.
Off the court, a 19-year-old was killed and a 21-year-old was hospitalized following shooting on New Mexico's main campus in Albuquerque on Saturday, Nov. 19, per the New Mexico State Police (NMSP). It was later discovered that the 21-year-old was identified as Mike Peake, who was shot during the incident and transported to an area hospital. His condition is still unknown, police say.
New Mexico and NM State effectively suspended its rivalry series in men's basketball this year. That means UTEP-NM State will be the Aggies' only rivalry series this year.
"I think one of the biggest thing is the frustration between the media and the fans since there's an active investigation," Moccia said. "There's a lot of privacy rules from a health standpoint, a student standpoint, a discipline standpoint... so, it looks like side-stepping but you have people in your ears saying 'you can't say this, that.' At the end of the day, you have 400 young people and sometimes they make mistakes. Sometimes the mistakes are much bigger than others... While disappointed, we're also not going to leave them hanging in the wind. We were super disappointed. We had talks with the staff and the whole team...We thought it was best to get the season back on track and the Las Vegas tournament was a big step forward."