This is the grind for the UTEP women's basketball team.
Eight days after a statement victory over the power-conference team from SMU, five days before the trip to Puerto Rico to play the ACC's Georgia Tech, the unbeaten Miners take on 1-8 Southeastern Louisiana.
This would be a trap game, except for one thing.
"I don't even know what that is," coach Keitha Adams said.
In UTEP's world, the trap game doesn't exist. Outside of two poor first halves in eight games, the Miners haven't had a no-show this year and the only result that wasn't a blowout was the five-point win against the Mustangs.
Southeastern Louisiana, which is coming off an 82-39 loss to SMU but does have a competitive 88-71 loss to Conference USA co-favorite Middle Tennessee on its resume, is unlikely to catch UTEP napping.
What this represents for the Miners is a mirror game, one where they will judge their play against their own high expectations.
"One thing about us, we'll have the same approach we always do," Adams said. "We talked about how we need to play at a certain level every time we practice, every game we play. We want to play a certain way."
"We've got to play like we practice," center Kristine Vitola said, repeating another Adams mantra. "Our defense wasn't good the last game, our (defensive) rotation wasn't that good, there's some stuff we can do better."
Perhaps forward Kayla Thornton put it best: "It's another game, another game we can improve," she said. "We've got to stay focused, practice hard, work on what UTEP needs to work on."
When asked what that was, she said, "Getting better on defense, on offense, the little things."
So there's that.
Adams did get a little more specific, pointing out UTEP's 25 fouls against SMU, many on perimeter hand checks that the Miners are committed to reducing.
"Getting our hands up, getting our hands off, eliminating some dumb fouls, be smarter," Adams said.
As for the opponent, the Lions of the Southland Conference opened with a victory against NAIA squad the University of Mobile (listed on ESPN.com, delightfully, as MOB) but haven't won since.
What Adams quickly brings up is their game against MTSU where they were within 71-65 inside 7:00 before the Blue Raiders finally took their measure. There's also a five-point loss to Grand Canyon, which along with New Mexico State, is probably one of the two best teams in the new-look WAC.
Southeastern is led by Symone Miller, who averages 15.4 points per game, and forward Nanna Pool, who averages 13.4 points and 9.8 rebounds.
"They rebound it, they played Middle Tennessee very tough until the last seven minutes, they like to drive the ball and they are very quick," Adams said. "They transition and take quick shots, they mix up their defenses."
As ever, though, UTEP won't be looking across the scorers table at the team on the visiting bench. The Miners will be looking at themselves as they try to go to 9-0.
Bret Bloomquist may be reached at 546-6359.