RUSTON, La. — Derric Jean and Jy’lan Washington combined to score 39 points and led six players into double-figure scoring as Louisiana Tech finally broke into the Conference USA win column by holding off UTEP 97-88 on Saturday night.
The Bulldogs had lost three of four games on their home floor coming into the game.
Louisiana Tech (10-7, 1-3) was down, 38-33 with under two minutes to play in the first half, but closed on a 9-0 run to take a 42-38 lead at intermission. Jacobi Boykins hit a 3-pointer with 15:10 left in the game to push the lead to 13, 61-48.
UTEP rallied to get within five with 1:21 left, 90-85, but no closer.
Jean hit 7 of 11 shots from the floor, knocking down both 3-point attempts, to finish with 20 points. Washington was 3 of 4 from distance and finished with 19.
Isiah Osborne scored 25 points and Omega Harris added another 21 for UTEP (6-10, 1-3).