Elon MBB Hosts League Leader Hofstra on Saturday Night

Posted by Press Release on January 9, 2015 at 2:20 pm under College | Comments are off for this article

ELON, N.C. – Coming off a win on Thursday night over William & Mary, the Elon (10-6, 2-1 CAA) men’s basketball team returns to Alumni Gym on Saturday, Jan. 10, for a tough test against conference leader Hofstra (12-4, 3-0 CAA). Tip is scheduled for 8 p.m. and the game will be televised on the American Sports Network.

ELON VS. HOFSTRA: The Phoenix and Pride have met once on the hardwood prior to Saturday’s game. Elon dropped a 70-46 decision to Hofstra on Nov. 23, 2009, in the Preseason NIT consolation game in Hempstead, N.Y., in Matt Matheny’s first season with the Phoenix.

LOOKING BACK: Elon made 13 of its final 14 shots in an 85-79 comeback win over William & Mary on Thursday, Jan. 8, at Alumni Gym. A deep three from Tanner Samson put the Phoenix ahead by three, 78-75, with under a minute to play and the maroon and gold held on to a lead from that point forward. Samson drilled six threes in the victory, while rookie Elijah Bryant also connected on six treys and knocked down seven free throws to finish with 25 points. Elon’s 12 threes and 85 total points are the most in a game against a Division I foe this season.

HOME SWEET HOME: Elon improved to 36-12 (.750) at home during the last four seasons following Thursday’s win over William & Mary. Elon is 5-1 at home this season.

FOR THE FOURTH TIME: Elijah Bryant earned CAA Rookie of the Week honors for the fourth time this season on Jan. 5, in addition to being named CAA Co-Player of the Week with Northeastern’s T.J. Williams. Bryant scored a career-best 32 points at Drexel on Jan. 3, going 10-of-20 from the floor and 9-of-10 at the free throw line.

CAREER DAY: Elijah Bryant’s 32 points at Drexel on Jan. 3 are the most by an Elon player since Jack Isenbarger’s 34 vs. The Citadel on Feb. 4, 2012. Bryant is the first Phoenix player with 10 or more field goals in a game since Lucas Troutman had 11 in Elon’s overtime win at Davidson last season.

LOOKING AHEAD: Following Saturday’s game against Hofstra, Elon concludes a three-game home stand on Jan. 14 against College of Charleston.

FROM DEEP: With six three-point makes against William & Mary, Tanner Samson now sits at 193 in his career, good for sixth in school history. Samson needs seven threes to pass Chris Chalko for fifth in school history. The junior from Littleton, Colo., ranks first in the CAA in threes made with 54 (11th nationally) and three-point attempts with 143 (sixth nationally).

DEFENDING THE THREE: Elon leads the CAA in three-point field goal defense, holding the opposition to 29.8 percent from deep this season.

HEAD COACH MATT MATHENY: The 2014-15 season marks the sixth year at Elon for head coach Matt Matheny. Matheny enters Saturday’s game with a career record of 87-88. Matheny was voted by the Southern Conference media as the Coach of the Year in 2012-13 and was a finalist for CollegeInsider.com’s Hugh Durham award, which honors the nation’s top mid-major coach.

ROAD TO BALTIMORE: The 2015 CAA Men’s Basketball Championship is scheduled for March 6-9 in Baltimore, Md., at Royal Farms Arena. Last year, Delaware topped William & Mary, 75-74, in the championship game to earn the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

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