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SMU upsets No. 24 UTEP in Conference USA final

Mar 10, 2008 - 2:04 AM ORLANDO, Florida (Ticker) -- Brittany Gilliam scored 20 points to lead Southern Methodist to a 73-57 upset of No. 24 Texas-El Paso in the Conference USA tournament championship game on Sunday.

Sharee Shepherd scored 17 points, including a 12-for-12 effort from the free-throw line, as the Mustangs (24-8) avenged a pair of regular-season losses to the top-seeded Miners (27-3). The loss snapped UTEP's 23-game winning streak.

Katy Cobb scored 11 points, while Janielle Dodds added 10 and 11 rebounds for SMU.

The Mustangs led, 30-20, early in the second half when the Miners scored 18 consecutive points. SMU then responded with a 17-0 run over a span of 6:01 to take a 47-38 lead with 6:53 to play.

The Mustangs were 22-of-23 on free throws in the last five minutes, including 10-of-10 in the closing 60 seconds.

Izabela Piekarska, a 6-5 center, finished with 21 points and 10 rebounds for UTEP. Jareica Hughes had 19 points and Natasha Lacy chipped in 15 and seven rebounds for the Miners, who had only one other player score with Timika Williams adding two points.

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