Coffer Leads Elon Past Defending SoCon Champions
ELON, N.C. — Behind a season-high 20 points from rookie Sam Coffer(Northern Guilflord High School) and a stingy defensive effort, the Elon women’s basketball team gave
head coach Charlotte Smith her first Southern Conference victory with a
69-44 drumming of the defending conference champion Samford Bulldogs on
Monday night, Dec. 5, in Alumni Gym.
Ahead by two points at the half, Elon (3-4, 1-1 SoCon) outscored Samford
(4-4, 0-2 SoCon) 41-18 in the second half, going on an 18-0 run over an
eight-minute stretch to go up by as many as 27 points against the
reigning SoCon Tournament champions.
“We played an exceptional game tonight and played well together against
a quality opponent,” Smith said. “We shot the ball well and won the
battle on the boards which made a big difference. Defensively we were
able to slow them down with our press and disrupt their flow on offense,
which allowed us to focus on our rebounding. We showed a lot of passion
and energy tonight and I am excited for our team to get this win.”
Coffer proved to be too much for the Bulldogs in the victory, as the
Greensboro native scored 20 points on 6-of-10 shooting from the field,
including a 4-of-7 mark from beyond the arc. Coffer also knocked down
all four of her free-throw attempts in the win, as Elon finished the
night 7-of-8 (87.5 percent) from the charity stripe. Coffer also grabbed
six boards for the Phoenix.
“We put a lot of work in shooting at practice yesterday and it
definitely paid off and made a difference tonight,” Coffer said.
“Everyone played great tonight and we were able to feed off each other
on both ends of the floor for the entire game. We didn’t want to settle
for a two-point lead at halftime and we showed that in the second half
when everyone stepped up for us.”
Elon shot 46 percent from the field in the win, connecting on 10-of-21
shots from three-point range.
The Phoenix won the battle on the boards, 41-30, as Lisa Archie and
Kelsey Evans each hauled in a team-high seven rebounds.
Ali Ford and Aiesha Harper both finished the night with nine points,
while Kallie Hovatter added eight points on 4-of-6 shooting in 22
minutes off the bench. Ford finished with a game-high five assists,
while Harper led the Phoenix with three steals.
Both squads finished the game with 12 turnovers, but the Phoenix managed
to turn in 15 points off Samford’s turnovers compared to the Bulldogs’
Elon took a two-point edge, 28-26, at intermission after limiting
Samford to 29-percent shooting (9-of-31) from the field in the opening
After the Bulldogs pulled within nine points, 42-33, with 15:07 to play
in the second period on a Shelby Campbell layup, the Phoenix began to
click on all cylinders at both ends of the floor. The maroon and gold
scored 18-straight points over the next eight minutes of the game and
held Samford without a field goal to take a 60-33 advantage with 7:54
remaining, capped off by a Zora Stephenson three.
Including Stephenson’s six points, the Elon reserves outscored its
counterparts, 20-15, in the victory after knocking down nine field
goals. The Phoenix bench also grabbed 18 boards, including five by Erica
Keto in 10 minutes of action.
Elon is off for the next nine days until the team welcomes instate rival
Campbell to Alumni Gym for a 7 p.m. tip on Wednesday, Dec. 14.