ELON, N.C. – Elon University women’s basketball hits the road for its fourth away game in the last five outings with a 2 p.m. matchup against UNCW on Sunday, Feb. 5, inside Trask Coliseum.
The Phoenix and Seahawks have met 12 times before with Elon holding a 7-5 advantage in the series. Since Elon transitioned to the CAA, the Phoenix is 3-2 against UNCW and has won each of the last three meetings.
A winner of three of its last five games, UNCW opened CAA play with a five consecutive losses before its first conference win over Hofstra on Jan. 20. Last time out, UNCW lost 57-40 at Delaware on Friday night. UD led by as many as 29 in the wire-to-wire win over the Seahawks. Before that, UNCW had defeated College of Charleston and Towson, both at home in Trask Coliseum.
Elon turned a two-point game at halftime into a 28-point, 83-55 win over Towson to tie as the largeset CAA win for the program to date. Shay Burnett led the Phoenix with 18 points to go with eight rebounds and six assists. Jenifer Rhodes added a double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds and Meme Garner notched a career-high 14 points. Elon shot 1-for-10 in the first half from long range before hitting 9-of-13 from long distance in the second half to open up the big lead.
STARTING A NEW STREAK
Elon’s nine-game winning streak from Dec. 17 against ETSU to Jan. 15 against Drexel was the most the team has won in a row as a Division I program. The last time Elon had won that many in a row came during a 12-game winning streak in 1981-82 under coach Mary Jackson. Elon has now won four in a row since falling to James Madison on Jan. 20. It’s also won 13 of its last 14 games.
Elon checks in as the top mid-major in the NCAA RPI at No. 25 Saturday. It is also No. 12 in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major poll for the second week in a row, checking in as the highest CAA team. Elon is No. 8 in the espnW Mid-Major poll this week, one spot ahead of JMU and the highest CAA team on the list.
Junior Shay Burnett has now scored 992 career points and senior Jenifer Rhodes has scored 973 points in their respective careers with the Phoenix. Lauren Brown already surpassed 1,000-career points earlier this year.
ELON ON SUPER BOWL SUNDAY
Elon has played just once on Super Bowl Sunday. Last season, Elon topped Delaware 66-64 in double overtime on the road on the same day the Denver Broncos beat the Carolina Panthers, 24-10. It also marks the last time Elon played an overtime game.
ON THE ROAD
Elon has been stellar away from Alumni Gym this season. To date, the Phoenix is 10-3 away from home and a winner of each of its last eight road games. The eight-game road winning streak marks the longest streak for the program as a Division I team. The previous long was five games from Jan. 8 to Jan. 29 in 2010-11, the final season of the Karen Barefoot era. (The 10-3 mark includes neutral-site games)
MAKING IT LOOK EASY
At the halfway point of the CAA season, Elon’s .889 winning percentage was the best mark for the Phoenix in the program’s 18-year run as a Division I program. The previous best mark came when Elon started the 2001-02 Big South season with a .857 winning percentage, a record of 6-1.
REWRITING THE BOOKS
Through 22 games this season, Elon’s 17-5 record marks the best start in the program’s D-I history. Before the second half of the CAA season, the 16 wins this year marked just the second time Elon has posted 15 or more victories in the first 21 games of a season to date. The previous best mark was during 2010-11 when the Phoenix started 15-6. That season, Elon finished with 20 wins and went to the second round of the WBI.
Elon’s wins Jan. 8 over Delaware, Jan. 13 at Charleston and Feb. 3 over Towson mark the three largest in conference play as a member of the CAA. The 84-56 (+28) victory at Charleston and the 83-55 (+28) win over Towson are the largest in two-plus CAA seasons. The 69-42 (+27) home win over Delaware was the previous biggest CAA win for the program before it was topped days later at Charleston. Before that, Elon’s biggest CAA win was 22 points last season over Towson and UNCW.
Elon returns home for a 7 p.m. meeting with Northeastern in Alumni Gym on Friday, Feb. 10. The game starts a stretch in which Elon is home for three of its next four. The lone road game during that stretch will come in Harrisonburg, Va., for a rematch at James Madison on Sunday, Feb. 12.