Elon WBB Wraps Up Home Stand Against Towson

Posted by Press Release on January 17, 2015 at 2:51 pm under College | Comments are off for this article

ELON, N.C. – The Elon women’s basketball team (10-6, 3-2) finishes up a three-game home stand when it hosts Towson (7-10, 3-2) on Sunday, Jan. 18, for a 2 p.m. tip in Alumni Gym. Tickets can be purchased through the Elon Ticket Office. Admission is $15 for courtside seats, $8 for reserved seats and $5 for youth (12 and under).

Last Time Out
Despite only trailing by 10 points midway through the second half, the Phoenix was unable to overcome the disadvantage and knock off league-leader James Madison on Thursday. The Dukes won the game, 68-51, to stay unbeaten in conference play. However, the maroon and gold kept JMU from shooting over 40 percent and held them to a 13 percent clip from beyond the arc. Elon finished with a 31 percent mark from long distance and saw a 26-10 advantage from its bench. Shay Burnett led the Phoenix with 10 points and four assists, while Jenifer Rhodes scored nine points on the night. Sam Coffer and Malaya Johnson hauled down nine and seven rebounds, respectively, with Johnson also recording a career-high four blocks.

Scouting the Tigers
Towson picked up a 56-52 win at College of Charleston on Friday night, improving to 3-2 in CAA play. The Tigers shot 43 percent from the field, including seven threes for a 27 percent mark from beyond the arc. While Towson has 10 losses on the season, five of those setbacks came by 10 points or less, including a one-point loss to James Madison. LaTorri Hines-Allen leads the Tigers and ranks second in the CAA in scoring with 19 points per game and is third in the league with 9.4 rebounds per game. Hines-Allen posted a double-double against the Cougars with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Dominique Johnson also scores in double figures for Towson with 12.8 points/game, which ranks eighth in the league.

The Series
Sunday marks the first meeting between the Phoenix and the Tigers. Elon makes the return trip to Towson, Md., in just over two weeks for a game on Thursday, Feb. 5.

Common Opponent
Outside of the CAA, Towson and Elon have one other opponent in common this season. Both teams played Navy during non-conference competition. The Phoenix claimed a 69-56 win over the Mids in Alumni Gym on Nov. 16, while the Tigers suffered a defeat 55-51 in Annapolis, Md.

Program Milestone
The Phoenix women’s basketball team is nearing a program marker of 600 wins. Elon currently has 593 overall wins since it began competition in 1971.

Spark of the Bench
The extra spark that Elon has had off the bench has been a tremendous asset so far this season. The Phoenix is out scoring its opponents, 341-266, in bench points. Sophomores Lauren Brown and Jenifer Rhodes have been a big part of the team’s depth with the two players averaging 7.6 and 7.5 points per game, respectively.

Block Party
Elon currently ranks first in the conference and 40th nationally with 5.0 blocked shots/game. Malaya Johnson and Sam Coffer rank fifth and sixth in the league in blocks, respectively, with 1.3 per game. Elon posted a season-high 11 blocks in its game at NC State on Dec. 7. That mark tied a team-high mark under head coach Charlotte Smith. The only other time the Phoenix has recorded 11 blocks in a game in the last four years was at Georgia Southern on Jan. 13, 2014.

On the Defensive
The Phoenix defense has played strong so far this season and ranks in the top of several CAA defensive categories. Elon is first in blocked shots (5.0/game), fourth in field goal defense (38.0 percent), first in three-point field goal defense (28.0 percent) and fourth in steals (8.1/game).

From the Field
Elon is first in the CAA in field-goal percentage, ranking 63rd nationally, and fourth in field-goal percentage defense. The Phoenix owns a 42.4 shooting percentage 16 games into the season, while holding opponents to 38 percent. Malaya Johnson leads the league with her 56.6 shooting percentage, while Shay Burnett (52.0 percent) and Jenifer Rhodes (48.0 percent) rank third and seventh, respectively.

Beyond the Arc
The Phoenix is shooting 33.2 percent from the three-point line and is third in the league in the long-distance shooting category. The team is first in three-point defense with opponents only shooting 28 percent from beyond the arc. Two Elon players currently rank in the top 10 in the conference in three-point field goal percentage. Lauren Brown ranks second (41.7 percent) and Zora Stephenson is fifth (37.8 percent).

Head Coach Charlotte Smith
Elon head coach Charlotte Smith is in her fourth season with the Phoenix and owns a 60-50 career record. Smith led Elon to its second straight Southern Conference Tournament semifinal appearance and a 10-8 overall conference record last season.

Looking Ahead
Elon travels East on I-40 to take on UNC Wilmington in its next game on Thursday, Jan. 22. The 7 p.m. game in Wilmington, N.C., will mark the first CAA meeting for the two teams.

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