ELON, N.C. – Josh Bonney provided a spark off the bench to help lift the Elon University men’s basketball team to a 73-59 victory over the Furman Paladins on Thursday night, Jan. 17, inside Alumni Gym.
Filling in for Austin Hamilton at point guard for most of the night, Bonney scored a season-high 15 points in 21 minutes on 7-of-10 shooting to lead the Elon (10-7, 3-2 Southern Conference) charge against Furman (4-12, 1-4 Southern Conference) in a key league matchup.
“Tonight I was really able to get into a flow and my teammates gave me ample time to do what I’m good at and help us to a great team win,” Bonney said. “I thought we did a great job as a team of adjusting on the fly tonight and we were intense and aggressive for all 40 minutes.”
Including Bonney’s solid night, the Phoenix bench outscored its counterparts, 26-8, the highest output from the Elon reserves this season against a Division I foe. Ryan Winters scored a career-high nine points in 21 minutes off the bench, while also hauling down five boards.
“I was very pleased with a great team victory tonight,” said Elon head coach Matt Matheny. “In can be seen in a lot of ways, but obviously Josh stepped up and played very well tonight. Several guys played extended minutes and out of position, so those are just a few things that signify the fact this was a great team victory for us.”
Elon shot 47 percent (27-of-58) from the field, the team’s second best night versus a Southern Conference foe this season.
Lucas Troutman scored in double figures for the 16th consecutive game, ending the night with a team-high 18 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the field. Troutman helped the Phoenix outscore the Paladins in the paint, 42-16.
Ryley Beaumont just missed his third double-double of the season, as the junior from Millersville, Md., finished the game with 10 points and nine boards.
Elon committed just nine turnovers in the win, while forcing Furman into 15. The maroon and gold scored 22 points off Furman’s turnovers, while the Paladins cashed in just five off of Elon’s miscues.
Bonney helped the Phoenix out to an eight-point lead, 27-19, with less than eight minutes remaining in the first period after picking up a loose ball near midcourt and taking it to the basket for an uncontested layup.
Elon closed the final 8:30 of the half on a 20-8 run to take a 42-27 advantage into the locker room at intermission, shooting 47 percent (14-of-30) in the first 20 minutes. Troutman led Elon with 10 points, while Bonney and Winters both ended the half with nine apiece.
The Phoenix continued to have the hot-hand to open the second period, beginning the second session on a 9-2 run to take a 51-29 lead with 15:39 remaining.
Elon led by as many as 25 points in the second frame, keeping the Paladins at arm’s length down the stretch to secure the league victory and improve to 6-2 at home this season.
Furman’s Bobby Austin scored a game-high 19 points, while Colin Reddick ended the night with 18.
The Phoenix remains home for a Saturday night cross-divisional matchup with the Wofford Terriers. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. inside Alumni Gym.