Elon MBB Set to Host William & Mary on Senior Night

ELON, N.C. – The Elon University men’s basketball team opens its final weekend of the regular season with its last home game of 2015-16 on Thursday, Feb. 25, with Senior Night against the William & Mary Tribe at 7 p.m. inside Alumni Gym.

The Phoenix will recognize its four member senior class of Wes Brewer, Sam Hershberger, Tony Sabato and Tanner Samson before tomorrow night’s contest. Free special edition t-shirts will be given out at tomorrow night’s game.

You can listen to the game live on WSML 104.5 FM/1200 AM with Taylor Durham and John Roddey on the Elon IMG Sports Network. Pre-game coverage on WSML in Alumni Gym begins at 6:30 p.m. Watch the action on Phoenix All-Access as senior Justin Biegel and Bryan Anderson will have the call.

Tonight, Elon will recognize its four-member senior class of Wes Brewer, Sam Hershberger, Tony Sabato and Tanner Samson. Despite having one more year of eligibility, Brewer will graduate in May.

This year’s senior class has tallied 69 wins during their tenure. With one more win, they will surpass last year’s class for the most wins in school history during Elon’s Division I era. Last season’s senior class of Kevin Blake, Austin Hamilton and Ryan Winters finished with 69 wins in four years with the program. Elon is 4-2 overall in Senior Night games during the Matheny era since 2009-10.

Thursday marks the 10th all-time meeting between the Elon Phoenix and William & Mary Tribe. In the last meeting, Elon fell inside Kaplan Arena 89-67 on Jan. 21, 2016. The Tribe lead the all-time series 8-1 and 4-1 during Elon’s Division I era. Elon and William & Mary matched up three times last season, including in the 2015 CAA Men’s Basketball Championships. Both teams split the regular season series with the home team winning each time.

In the final meeting last season, the No. 1-seeded Tribe defeated the No. 8 seed Elon 72-59 in the second round of the CAA Championships at Royal Farms Arena in Baltimore on March 7, 2015. During the 2014-15 regular season, Elon won 85-79 in Alumni Gym on Jan. 8, 2015 and the Tribe defeated the Phoenix 77-58 on Feb. 11, 2015 in historic Williamsburg, Va. The first all time meeting was during the 1923-24 season and the Tribe won 25-10 on Feb. 14, 1924.

The Phoenix are locked in to play in the first round on Friday, March 4, inside Royal Farms Arena and is currently eighth in the standings. Elon, with some help, can finish as high as tied for sixth in the standings, but would lose the tiebreaker to Charleston and Northeastern based on matchups against higher seeds. To finish tied for sixth, Elon needs to win its final two games, Charleston needs to lose both contests, and Northeastern needs to split against Charleston and Drexel. The Phoenix could finish seventh if it wins out and Northeastern drops both games.

Elon’s freshmen have made an impact during the 2015-16 season scoring 36.7 percent of Phoenix points this season. 818 of the team’s 2,231 points have been scored by a freshmen, which includes 286 from Tyler Seibring, 269 from Dainan Swoope, Steven Santa Ana has tabbed 212, Karolis Kundrotas has scored 29 and Sheldon Eberhardt has 22.

The three freshmen that have had the most playing time has made an impact for the Phoenix in conference play. Tyler Seibring has averaged a team-high 11.9 points and 5.1 rebounds in 16 games. Steven Santa Ana has notched 9.1 points and 3.8 rebounds per game in 10 CAA contests. Dainan Swoope is averaging 7.6 points in conference play.

A total of eight different Elon players have led the team in scoring in 16 CAA games this season. Thompson has been the high scorer in a team-most four conference games. Only Tyler Seibring (3), Luke Eddy (2), Steven Santa Ana (2) and Tanner Samson (2) been the other scoring leaders in more than one CAA game this season.

Going into Thursday’s game against William & Mary, Elon has a 29-27 mark in the month of February under head coach Matt Matheny. Elon was 3-5 in February last season.

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.

The Phoenix hits the road for its regular season finale at Delaware on Saturday, Feb. 27, for a 2 p.m. tipoff inside the Bob Carpenter Center. Elon will then begin its journey through the 2016 CAA Men’s Basketball Championships on Friday, March 4. Elon will either play at 6 p.m. or at 8:30 p.m. inside Royal Farms Arena in Baltimore.