Tribe Sends Elon WBB Phoenix to Second Straight Tight Loss, 81-75

Posted by Press Release on January 14, 2018 at 7:10 pm under College | Comments are off for this article

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. – Though it went down by double digits early in the third quarter, Elon University battled back against William & Mary but came up six points short in an 81-75 loss to the Tribe on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 14, inside Kaplan Arena.


The loss, Elon’s second in a row, puts the Phoenix at 10-6 overall and 2-3 in the conference. William & Mary snapped a two-game losing skid and moved to 12-4 overall and 3-2 in the CAA.

Jada Graves opened the afternoon with strong efforts on both ends of the floor, scoring the first points of the game on a layup after coming away with a steal at midcourt and going the distance to give the Phoenix a 2-0 lead. The sophomore also had three rebounds in the opening three minutes. Elon shot just 7-of-22 in the opening quarter, but it led by as many as three before a free throw and a jumper off a turnover in the closing seconds of the quarter allowed William & Mary to tie it at 15 through one.

After missing its first shot of the second quarter, William & Mary hit each of its next seven buckets and mixed in a trio of three-pointers to go up 10 at 33-23 with 5:05 to go before halftime. Elon answered nicely, though, closing the half on a 9-4 run to trail 37-32 at the break.

Though Graves opened the third quarter with a layup to cut the lead to three, William & Mary went on an 8-0 run to lead by a game-high 11 at 45-34 just two minutes into the third before Malaya Johnson scored back-to-back layups to start an 8-0 run that cut the Tribe lead back to three. The Phoenix did bring the William & Mary lead to two at 50-48 after another Graves layup with 3:17 to go in the quarter, but a 12-4 run to close the quarter gave William & Mary a 10-point advantage through 30 minutes.

Looking to put together a comeback, Elon held William & Mary scoreless for the first three minutes of the fourth and put together a 5-0 run to slice the lead to five at 57-52 before Bianca Boggs’s triple pushed it back to eight. Down the stretch, Elon cut the lead to as few as three on multiple occasions, but the Tribe held on with three free throws in the final seconds to take the win.

Shay Burnett reached 20-plus points for the third time this season with a game-high 22 points on 8-of-15 from the floor. Both Johnson and Ra’Shika White added 16 points apiece and White recorded her second-straight double-double by adding a team-best 11 rebounds. Graves missed a double-double by one board, ending with 11 points and nine rebounds. No other Phoenix scored more than five points on the afternoon.

Boggs led William & Mary with 20 points while Nari Garner finished with 19. Victories Reynolds chipped in 14 points and seven rebounds and Abby Rendle finished with 10 points and six blocks. Jenna Green tallied a double-double with 14 points and a game-high 12 assists.

-Elon has now lost back-to-back games overall for the first time since dropping three in a row to Wake Forest, North Carolina and Duke on Nov. 26, Dec. 4 and Dec. 8, 2016.
-The defeat also marks the first time Elon has lost back-to-back games against conference opponents since falling at Towson and Drexel on Jan. 15 and Jan. 17, 2016.
-Elon did not hit a three-pointer for the second time this season with the first coming Nov. 24 against Alabama. Before not hitting a three against the Crimson Tide, last time it didn’t hit a three-pointer was Jan. 22, 2016, against College of Charleston during the 2015-16 season.
-With 16 points, Johnson now has 972 in her career in maroon and gold and is 28 away from becoming the 24th player in program history to reach the 1,000-point mark.
-With the loss, it marks Elon’s first loss to William & Mary in eight games against the Tribe since the Phoenix joined the CAA in 2014-15.

After its pair of games in Virginia, the Phoenix returns home Friday, Jan. 19, for a 7 p.m. contest against Towson. It’s the first of two home games next weekend with Elon welcoming Delaware to Alumni Gym on Sunday, Jan. 21, at 1 p.m.

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