Second-Half Surge Takes Elon Women’s Basketball Past Morgan State

ELON, N.C. – A 20-0 run by the Elon women’s basketball team in the second half surged the Phoenix past Morgan State for a 74-54 win tonight, Dec. 13, in Alumni Gym. Elon is 4-4 after its final home game of 2012, while the Lady Bears fall to 4-6.

“I’m really proud of the way we came out and played in the second half,” said Elon head coach Charlotte Smith. “I felt like we did a great job of executing, getting the ball inside and making the extra pass, which created a lot of scoring opportunities. We shot the ball really well. It was a team effort as we got a contribution from everyone tonight, including some great work off our bench.”

The Phoenix recorded a season-high from the field after going 31-of-60 to shoot 51 percent. Elon held Morgan State to 28 percent from both the field and three-point range.

Kelsey Evans led all players with 19 points and fell just short of a double-double with nine rebounds. Rookie Jessica Farmer marked her first career doubled-double with 10 points and a career-high 10 boards (seven offensive). Evans and Farmer’s work on the glass helped Elon win the rebounding battle, 42-40.

Ali Ford tied her career-high of eight assists for the second time this season and recorded her seventh straight game in double figures with 14 points. Ford now has 1,634 career points, which is second on Elon’s all-time scoring list. Zora Stephenson also scored 14 points after going 4-of-8 from beyond the arc to mark four players in double figures for the Phoenix.

On defense, Evans finished with three blocks, while Farmer grabbed four steals.

After trailing early in the first half, the Phoenix took its first lead of the game with 10:57 remaining after Lauren Hudson sunk a pair of free throws to give Elon an 18-17 advantage. The Lady Bears were not able to make another field goal after the 8:46 mark and Elon took a four-point edge into the locker room at the break, 26-22.

The Phoenix played with a renewed energy in the second half as Evans scored Elon’s first six points to increase the advantage to seven, 32-25. With the maroon and gold up by five at the 6:58 mark, a jumper by Ford ignited a streak of 20 straight points for the Phoenix to put the team up, 74-49, with under a minute remaining. The Lady Bears managed five points in the final minute to make it a 20-point victory for Elon. The Phoenix ended the second frame shooting a blistering 61 percent from the field.

Elon will have a week before its next game at Campbell on Thursday, Dec. 20. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. in Buies Creek, N.C.