EL PASO, Texas - UTEP Head Coach Joe Golding has scored his first road win, a 73-64 victory over Pacific last friday night. Golding celebrated in the locker room dancing with his team, but the party was short-lived as the Miners turn around to host a stingy UC Riverside club on Monday night.
"It's a team that we have a ton of respect for and our utmost attention," says Golding of the Highlanders (3-2). "It's a quick turnaround for us. More importantly man, we have to continue to press."
UC Riverside comes to the Don Haskins Center battle tested, already with a win at Arizona State on a 3/4 court buzzer-beater from Temple transfer J.P Moorman.
"They controlled the whole game, they won from tipoff until the buzzer and that just tells you how good of a team they are," added Golding.
But as the Miners settle in in their first season under Golding, the energetic Head Coach is seeing cohesion amongst his locker room. The road trip at Pacific played a big part in that.
"It was a great trip you know, anytime you get a chance this early in the season to hit the road it gives your team a chance to bond," says Golding. "And I really thought going out there we had one of our better practices once we landed the night before, I thought our shootaround was really good."
It paid off in win over a Tigers team that won 23 games two season ago. The Miners outrebounded Pacific 33-24.
"We outrebounded somebody, you know!? So that was a good sign," exclaimed an energetic Golding. "We're obviously working extremely hard on that. Our guys are understanding the importance of rebounding. And I was really proud of our guys for winning that battle."
Following this Monday's tilt vs. UC Riverside, the Miners host Florida A&M on Wednesday in a game that UTEP should be decently favored to win. The Rattlers have already lost games at Kansas State and Miami, but did play the Wildcats to a ten-point finish.
Watch Nate Ryan's full interview with Coach Golding in the "UTEP Men's Basketball Coaches Show" in the attached clip.