ELON, N.C. – Elon University head men’s basketball coach Matt Matheny recently announced the addition of two newcomers to the Phoenix program in 2012-13. Tanner Samson (Littleton, Colo./Regis Jesuit) and Tony Sabato (Cincinnati, Ohio/Archbishop Moeller) will both don the maroon and gold next season.
Samson, a 6-4, 193-pound guard from Littleton, Colo., was a standout player at Regis Jesuit High School and helped the Raiders to a pair of state titles in 2010 and 2011. Samson was a three-time Continental League honoree and as a senior, he picked up all-state accolades and was selected to play in the Colorado “The Show” All-Star game. In addition, Samson was first-team all-city selection and was named team MVP in his final season at Regis. He was also named to the state all-tournament team as a junior and senior and won the Rocky Mountain Fall Showcase 3-Point Contest as a sophomore. Samson was high school teammates with current Phoenix player Ryan Winters. He is the son of Curt and Becky Samson. His mother, Becky, was a two-sport athlete (cross country and tennis) at Creighton University.
“Tanner comes from a winning program, where he has won two state championships,” Matheny said. “His experience at Regis Jesuit and being mentored by coach Ken Shaw has prepared him well to be a fine Elon student-athlete. Tanner lives in the gym and we are excited to welcome him to the Elon family.”
Sabato, a 6-7, 215-pound center from Cincinnati, Ohio, was a three-year letterwinner at Archbishop Moeller High School, helping the Crusaders to an elite eight appearance in the state tournament last season and a final four appearance in 2010-11. Sabato was a three-time second-team GCL South Division All-Star and led the division in blocked shots as a senior at 1.6 per game. Sabato also ranked third in the South Division in field goal percentage at 53.6 percent and sixth in rebounding. He is the son of Joe and Linda Sabato.
“Tony is coming from an outstanding high school basketball program at Moeller, where he was coached by the legendary Carl Kremer,” Matheny said. “He fits the exact mold of the type of student and basketball player we look for here at Elon. His strong work-ethic and toughness will be a great addition to our program.”
Both players are eligible to compete in the upcoming 2012-13 season.