Elon MBB Set for Showdown against Towson on Saturday

ELON, N.C. – The Elon University men’s basketball team takes a two-game winning streak into Saturday night’s matchup against the Towson Tigers, Feb. 6, inside Alumni Gym in a Colonial Athletic Association showdown. The game will be aired on American Sports Network with Mike Gleason and Mack McCarthy on the call.

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 5:30 p.m.

The Phoenix held the Blue Hens to 11 first-half points on 21.7 shooting from the field as Elon cruised to an 83-56 win over Delaware. Four players finished in double-figures for Elon. Brian Dawkins and Christian Hairston led the way with 12 points each. Tanner Samson and Dainan Swoope added to the scoring with 10 points apiece. The Phoenix locked down defensively and held Delaware to one field goal in the final 10 minutes of the first half. Elon had a 31-11 lead at the half as they held the Blue Hens were 5-of-23 from the field. Elon pulled out to a 38-point lead, its largest margin of the game after a Samson three-pointer gave Elon a 57-19 advantage with 11:38 remaining.

Saturday will be the fourth all-time meeting between the Elon Phoenix and Towson Tigers. Last year, the Tigers swept the regular season series against the Phoenix, but Elon defeated Towson in the CAA tournament opening round. The Phoenix edged the Tigers 74-69 in the first round of the CAA tournament last season on March 6, 2015. The point differential between the two teams is Towson by +1 in the last three matchups combined. Towson topped Elon in both regular season matchups with a 57-53 win on Jan. 5, 2015 in Maryland, followed by a 53-51 victory in Alumni Gym on Jan. 22, 2015.

Elon’s senior class of Sam Hershberger, Tony Sabato, Tanner Samson and Wes Brewer have been a part of 68 wins during their time with the program since the 2012-13 season. They have a combined record of 68-53 since their first year with the program. The most wins posted by a senior class during Elon’s Division I era is 69 total victories, which was reached by last year’s 2015 class of Austin Hamilton, Kevin Blake, and Ryan Winters.

This season, 35.9 percent (238-of-663) of Elon’s made baskets have come from behind the three point line. The Phoenix is shooting 34.5 percent from deep and are averaging a CAA-best 9.9 triples a game, ranked 11th in the NCAA this season. Elon has struggled from three-point range of late going a combined 16-of-75 (21.3 percent) from deep. 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 68 made treys this season, while Dainan Swoope is behind him with 50. A total of 10 Phoenix has made a bucket from deep this season.

Elon as a team is averaging 16.1 assists per game this season, which is second the CAA and 44th in the NCAA. Luke Eddy is leading the team with 113 assists, 4.9 assists per game. He is second in the CAA in both categories.

Elon’s freshmen have made an impact during the 2015-16 season scoring 36.0 percent of Phoenix points this season. 675 of the team’s 1873 points have been scored by a freshmen, which includes 238 from Dainan Swoope, 222 from Tyler Seibring, Steven Santa Ana has tabbed 172, Karolis Kundrotas has scored 26 and Sheldon Eberhardt has 17. The three freshmen that have had the most playing time has made an impact for the Phoenix in conference play. Tyler Seibring has averaged 11.5 points and 6.0 rebounds in the first 11 games. Prior to his hand injury, Steven Santa Ana notched 10.0 points and 5.8 rebounds per game in six CAA contests. Dainan Swoope is averaging 8.3 points in conference play.

Elon has been most successful this season when winning the tip and leading at the half this season. The Phoenix is 11-1 overall this season when leading at the half. Elon’s loss vs. JMU on Saturday, Jan. 23, was the first loss of the season when leading at the half.

Elon ranks in the top-three in the CAA in multiple offensive categories. In game averages, the Phoenix is third in scoring (78.0 ppg), second in assists (16.1 apg), and first in three-pointers per game (9.9).

The Elon men’s basketball program has made at least one three-point field goal in 318 consecutive games (not including exhibition games). The Phoenix currently averages 9.9 mades three pointers a game this season. The last time Elon did not make a three in a game was Jan. 30, 2006, at Georgia Southern when the team went 0-of-14 from deep.

Next week, Elon will face a pair of teams for the second time this season. The Phoenix heads to Wilmington, N.C. to take on the league leaders UNCW on Thursday, Feb. 11 at 7 p.m. Elon will then return home on Saturday, Feb. 13, to host College of Charleston for a 7 p.m. tipoff inside Alumni Gym.