ELON, N.C. – A 21-0 second-half run from the Davidson Wildcats proved to be too much for the Elon women’s basketball team to overcome on Saturday, Feb. 11, as the Phoenix suffered a 78-51 setback in Southern Conference action from Alumni Gym.
The loss snaps Elon’s four-game home winning streak and drops the maroon and gold to 12-12 overall and 8-7 in league play. Davidson improves to 17-7 (13-2 SoCon) with the win.
“I thought we did well rebounding the ball in the first half, but our emotional energy wasn’t where it needed to be for all 40 minutes today and we came out flat in the second half,” said Elon head coach Charlotte Smith. “We need to learn from our mistakes and continue to become a better team moving forward into Monday’s game.”
Ali Ford scored a team-high 16 points in the setback, all of which came in the second half. Ford knocked down 6-of-16 field goal attempts, including two three-pointers.
Aiesha Harper was the only other Phoenix player in double figures with 11 points.
Kelsey Evans tied for a game-high with eight rebounds and tied Lisa Archie with a game-high three blocked shots.
After limiting the ‘Cats to 32 percent shooting in the first half, the Phoenix allowed Davidson to shoot 57 percent from the field en route to 50 second-half points. Davidson won the battle in the paint, 40-20, and scored 24 points off 21 Elon turnovers.
Davidson’s Laura Murray led all scorers with 19 points, while Sophia Aleksandravicius and Barbara Sitton each chipped in 13 points.
Elon pulled within a basket with 3:22 to play in the opening frame on a Harper jumper from 10 feet away, but the ‘Cats went on a mini run at the end of the half to take a 28-22 lead at intermission. Harper led all scorers with nine points at halftime. Ford, Evans and Davidson’s Aleksandravicius all went scoreless in the first period.
Free throws proved to be the deciding factor in the first 20 minutes. Davidson knocked down 7-of-9 attempts from the charity stripe while Elon went just 1-of-2. Davidson finished the game 14-of-20 (70 percent) at the line while Elon went 3-of-4 (75 percent).
Murray gave Davidson an 11-point lead with less than 16 minutes to play after connecting from long distance in front of the Wildcats bench to put Elon behind 39-28.
Sitton and Katrin Chiemeka gave Davidson a 24-point advantage with 8:52 to play after connecting on back-to-back baskets to put the Phoenix down 58-34 and force a timeout.
Davidson held Elon without a field goal for a seven-minute stretch in the second half until a Zora Stephenson three-pointer with 6:37 left made it a 60-37 game.
Elon heads to the mountains of Boone, N.C., for a Monday night contest at Appalachian State. Tip is set for 6 p.m. in the Holmes Convocation Center.