ELON, N.C. – As the Elon University women’s basketball team prepares for its inaugural season in the Colonial Athletic Association, head coach Charlotte Smith has announced the schedule for the upcoming 2014-15 season. The Phoenix will play an 18-game conference schedule in addition to an 11-game non-conference slate that includes contests against North Carolina, North Carolina State and Vanderbilt.
After hosting an exhibition against Catawba on Nov. 2, the Phoenix opens the season in Alumni Gym on Friday, Nov. 14, against Anderson. Two days later, Elon welcomes the Midshipmen of the Naval Academy on Nov. 16. The maroon and gold last played the Mids in 2009.
The Phoenix plays its first road game on Friday, Nov. 21, when the team travels down I-85 to take on Charlotte where the two programs last met in 2011.
Elon bookends the Thanksgiving holiday with a home game against Liberty on Tuesday, Nov. 25, and a contest at High Point on Sunday, Nov. 30. While the Phoenix and the Panthers have not played one another since 2009, this will mark the 75th meeting between the two schools.
For the third straight year, the Phoenix makes the trip to Reynolds Coliseum to take on NC State on Sunday, Nov. 7. The Wolfpack advanced to the NCAA Tournament before falling to BYU in the first round last season.
On Sunday, Dec. 14, Elon hosts Southeastern Conference opponent Vanderbilt in Alumni Gym. The Commodores are the first SEC team to visit Elon since South Carolina in 1975. Elon faced Vanderbilt, a team that played in the first round of the NCAAs in 2014, last year in the Commodores Thanksgiving tournament in Nashville, Tenn.
After a game at Campbell on Dec. 17, Smith faces her alma mater for the first time when the Phoenix takes on North Carolina in Myrtle Beach, S.C., at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center on Sunday, Dec. 21. Smith was a four-year letterwinner for the Tar Heels from 1992-95 and hit the game winning three-pointer to win the national championship for UNC in 1994. She was also an assistant under UNC head coach Sylvia Hatchell for nine seasons prior to coming to Elon. Last season, the Tar Heels advanced all the way to the Elite 8 of the NCAA Tournament before losing to Stanford.
The Phoenix plays two home games following the Christmas holiday, hosting former Southern Conference foe Furman on Monday, Dec. 29, before a contest against Lenoir-Rhyne on Wednesday, Dec. 31, to close out the 2014 calendar year.
Elon makes its CAA debut at Delaware on Sunday, Jan. 4. The Blue Hens earned the CAA’s automatic bid to the Women’s National Invitation Tournament (WNIT) last season before falling in the first round to Rutgers and finished the season ranked No. 22 in the CollegeInsider.com poll.
The Phoenix hosts its first CAA game in Alumni Gym on Tuesday, Jan. 6, against Drexel. The Dragons finished the 2013-14 season ranked in the top 20 of three categories in the NCAA’s national statistics rankings. Three days later, Elon travels to Williamsburg, Va., to play William & Mary on Friday, Jan. 9.
A former conference rivalry is renewed on Sunday, Jan. 11, when the Phoenix faces College of Charleston in Alumni Gym for the 24th meeting between the two programs. Last season, the Cougars returned to the postseason for the second straight year as a two-seed in the Women’s Basketball Invitational (WBI) and advanced to the West Region portion Final Four.
Elon remains at home for its next game on Thursday, Jan. 15, when it hosts reigning league champion James Madison. The Dukes claimed its seventh CAA title last year and advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament after defeating six-seed Gonzaga, finishing the season with 29 wins. The Phoenix wraps up a three-game home stand with a matchup against Towson on Sunday, Jan. 18.
Elon travels to the coast on Thursday, Jan. 22, to face UNC Wilmington. The Phoenix and the Seahawks have played a non-conference game the last two seasons with the maroon and gold winning both contests.
On Sunday, Jan. 25, the maroon and gold returns to the friendly confines of Alumni Gym to host Northeastern for the first time in program history. Elon will spend the next three games on the road, visiting JMU (Jan. 30), Towson (Feb. 5.) and CofC (Feb. 8).
After its second game of the season against UNCW at home on Thursday, Feb. 12, the Phoenix plays Hofstra for the first time in school history on Sunday, Feb. 15, in Alumni Gym. A few days later, Elon travels to Boston to play at Northeastern on Thursday, Feb. 19.
Elon hosts William & Mary on Feb. 22 before a pair of road games at Drexel (Feb. 27) and Hofstra (March 1). The final home and regular season game for the Phoenix comes on Wednesday, March 4, against Delaware.
The 2015 CAA Women’s Basketball Championship is scheduled for March 12-15 at The Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, Md.
For the first time, every CAA conference game will be televised through the partnerships with Comcast SportsNet and the American Sports Network, as well as CAA.tv, the conference’s new digital network.
2014-15 Elon Women’s Basketball Schedule
Nov. 2 - Catawba (exhibition) Nov. 14 - Anderson Nov. 16 - Navy Nov. 21 - at Charlotte Nov. 25 - Liberty Nov. 30 - at High Point Dec. 7 - at NC State Dec. 14 - Vanderbilt Dec. 17 - at Campbell Dec. 21 - vs. North Carolina (Myrtle Beach, S.C.) Dec. 29 - Furman Dec. 31 - Lenoir-Rhyne Jan. 4 - at Delaware Jan. 6 - Drexel Jan. 9 - at William & Mary Jan. 11 - College of Charleston Jan. 15 - James Madison Jan. 18 - Towson Jan. 22 - at UNC Wilmington Jan. 25 - Northeastern Jan. 30 - at James Madison Feb. 5 - at Towson Feb. 8 - at College of Charleston Feb. 12 - UNC Wilmington Feb. 15 - Hofstra Feb. 19 - at Northeastern Feb. 22 - William & Mary Feb. 27 - at Drexel March 1 - at Hofstra March 4 - Delaware March 12-15 - CAA Women’s Basketball Championship (Upper Malboro, Md.)