ELON, N.C. – The Elon University men’s basketball team continues conference play with another test at home, this time against in-state foe UNCW on Thursday, Jan. 14 at 7 p.m. inside Alumni Gym.
The game will video stream on Phoenix All-Access. You can listen to the game live on WSML 104.5 FM/1200 AM with Taylor Durham and Ryan Meizinger on the Elon IMG Sports Network. Pre-game coverage on WSML in Alumni Gym begins at 6:30 p.m.
Thursday marks the 14th all-time meeting between Elon and UNCW. The Seahawks have won four of the last five meetings. Elon and UNCW split the season series last year in CAA play with the home team winning each contest. The Seahawks defeated the Phoenix 82-65 in Trask Coliseum on Jan. 28, 2015, but Elon topped UNCW 74-55 on Senior Day, Feb. 28, 2015.
Prior to Elon’s win against UNCW last season, UNCW had a five-game winning streak in the series dating back to 2004. Despite Elon leading 7-6 in the all-time series, the Seahawks have the upper hand 5-1 during Elon’s Division I era. Elon was 6-0 against UNCW prior to the switch to Division I.
SEIBRING EARNS SECOND CAA HONOR
Freshman forward Tyler Seibring was named CAA Rookie of the Week for the second time this season on Monday, Jan. 11. Last week, Seibring averaged 13.5 points and 7.5 rebounds during Elon’s 1-1 week against James Madison adn Hofstra. He shot the ball 50 percent from the floor, including 6-of-14 from three-point range.
The freshman from Towanda, Ill. also earned the honor on Dec. 21. He averaged 12.5 points and 6.0 rebounds in Elon’s 2-0 week, where he finished 7-of-14 from 3-point range and also grabbed six rebounds in each contest as the Phoenix extended their winning streak to five games.
LET IT FLY
This season, 38.2 percent (182-of-477) of Elon’s made baskets have come from behind the three point line. The Phoenix is shooting 35.6 percent from deep and are averaging a CAA-best 10.7 triples a game, ranked 6th in the NCAA this season. Elon’s 18 3-pointers against the Alabama State Hornets on Dec. 16 was the most a Phoenix team has made in a game during the coach Matheny era. Tanner Samson has a team-high 57 made treys this season, while Dainan Swoope is right behind him with 36. A total of nine Phoenix have made a bucket from deep this season.
DISHING IT OUT
Elon as a team is averaging 16.5 assists per game this season, which leads the CAA and is 41st in the NCAA. Luke Eddy is leading the team with 94 assists (25th in NCAA), 5.5 assists per game (T-36th in NCAA). He is second in the CAA in both categories.
Elon’s freshmen have made an impact during the 2015-16 season scoring 36.4 percent of Phoenix points this season. 501 of the team’s 1377 points have been scored by a freshmen, which includes 169 from Dainan Swoope, 158 from Steven Santa Ana, Tyler Seibring has tabbed 146 and Karolis Kundrotas has scored 24. Sheldon Eberhardt has four points. He scored his first-career basket on Dec. 13 against Wesley College and had a bucket in the final minutes against #15 Duke. Both Santa Ana and Seibring have been instrumental in CAA play so far as freshmen. Seibring has averaged 12.5 points and 6.0 rebounds, while Santa Ana has notched 11.5 points and 5.5 rebounds in the first four games.
Samson became Elon’s all-time leader in career triples against FIU on, Dec. 4. The senior currently has 299 made 3-pointers and is one away from becoming the first Elon player to reach 300 made triples. The 299 career threes rank first among all active Division I players. Tanner Samson became the program’s 39th 1,000-point scorer after scoring 23 points against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Friday, Nov. 27. His 38.9 percent three-point percentage is tied for third in program history with W. Massenburg.
VOTES IN THE MID-MAJOR POLL
Elon is receiving a vote in this week’s CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top-25 Poll. It is the second time this seaosn the Phoenix are receiving votes in the poll. Elon had three votes in the poll on Dec. 28. In the updated poll for Jan. 11, William & Mary (No. 24) is the only team from the CAA ranked in the Top-25. Elon joins Hofstra (57), James Madison (42), College of Charleston (29) and Northeastern (12) as one of five CAA teams receiving votes.
GOOD START IS KEY
Elon has been most successful this season when winning the tip and leading at the half this season. The Phoenix is 10-0 this season when leading at the half and 5-2 overall when winning the tip.
Elon ranks in the top-3 in the CAA in multiple offensive categories. In game averages, the Phoenix is second in scoring (81.0 ppg), first in assists (16.5 apg), and first in three-pointers per game (10.7). Elon is ranked in the NCAA top-50 in each team category.
Elon wraps up week three of CAA play at College of Charleston on Saturday, Jan. 16, inside TD Arena at 4 p.m. and will be broadcasted locally on MyTV Charleston. The Phoenix then head into week four with a third consecutive home and road split, beginning with a trip to William & Mary on Jan. 23, then hosting JMU on Jan. 25 at Alumni.