The Charlotte 49ers men’s basketball team capped off their regular season play on Saturday night, falling 74-67 to UTEP. The 49ers (13-16, 7-11 C-USA) had three players in double figures, however it wasn’t enough to give the Niners the victory.
Andrien White lead the Charlotte team with 15 points from the bench, marking his fourth straight game in double digits from the bench and his 18th game this season collecting 15 points. Austin Ajukwa collected 13 points, all of which were scored in the second half. Benas Griciunas also came off the bench to claim 10 points for the Niners. Anthony Vanhook lead the squad with nine rebounds. Jon Davis had a well-rounded performance with seven points, seven rebounds and six assists.
The Miners (14-16, 12-6 C-USA) jumped out to an early 14-5 lead. Two shots from behind the arc brought the 49ers within three, 16-13 with just under nine minutes in the first half. Another three, this time from Hudson Price, cut the UTEP lead down to two, 18-16. The Miners then went on a 6-0 run to create a 24-16 game with 4:47 left in the half.
Headlined by another 3 from White, Charlotte cut the Miner lead down to 27-24 with 2:27 left in the half. UTEP put up two more points and the Niners put up one more to create a 29-25 game at the end of the first frame.
After the first five minutes of the second half UTEP extended their lead to nine points, 40-31. Charlotte responded by going on an 11-3 run, bringing the Niners within one point of the Miners. UTEP came up with an 11-1 run of their own. Charlotte came back to make it a 63-60 game with 3:30 left in the contest. UTEP hit the gas one more time, collecting eight more points and the win, 74-67.
The 49ers will know their seeding for the Conference tournament by the end of Saturday night. The tournament begins on Wednesday, March 8.