CHARLESTON, S.C. – Despite a career-high 29 points from Brian Dawkins, the Elon University men’s basketball team could not overcome a late run as the Phoenix fell to the league-leading College of Charleston Cougars, 71-58, on Saturday, Feb. 4, at TD Arena.
Elon (15-10, 7-5 CAA) couldn’t bounce back from Charleston’s 14-3 run over the final 3:20 of the contest after Tyler Seibring’s three-pointer made it a two-point Cougar lead, 57-55, with 4:43 remaining.
Dawkins led all players with 29 points on 11-of-20 shooting from the floor to go along with seven boards. Seibring grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds for the Phoenix and chipped in eight points. Dmitri Thompson was the second Elon player to finish in double figures with 10 points and he also added eight rebounds.
“I thought we played like we’ve been playing the last seven, eight, nine games for 38 minutes,” said head coach Matt Matheny. “We put ourselves in position to win a game on the road in the league against a very good opponent. I didn’t think we played well in the last two minutes in terms of late-game basketball decision making defensively – not that that would have changed the outcome – but for 38 minutes I thought we were pretty good.”
College of Charleston (19-6, 10-2 CAA) was led by Jarell Brantley’s double-double of 11 points and 14 rebounds. Joe Chealey scored a team-high 20 points and grabbed seven boards. Grant Riller was the third Cougar to score in double-figures with 13 points.
Elon locked down defensively holding the Cougars to just 26.7% from the floor in the first clip, the lowest percentage a team has shot from the field in a half against the Phoenix this season. Dawkins exploded onto the scene with 16 first-half points and scored seven in a 9-2 run over the last 3:11 to put Elon ahead 28-22 at halftime.
Charleston came right out of the gate in the second stanze with a 7-0 run over the first 1:52 to regain the lead, 29-28. However, a Dainan Swoope three-pointer put the maroon and gold back in front, 31-29, with 16:22 on the clock.
The Phoenix would regain the lead one more time, 38-36, after Brian Dawkins’ three-pointer with 12:37 on the clock. Buckets were traded over the next 7:25 and Seibring’s trey cut Charleston’s lead to two, 57-55, with 4:43 remaining.
The Cougars mounted a 14-3 run over the final 3:20 in the contest, limiting the Phoenix to just 1-of-9 shooting during that span to seal the victory.
The Phoenix heads to Newark to face the Delaware Blue Hens on Thursday, Feb. 9, at 7 p.m. inside the Bob Carpenter Center.
– Brian Dawkins scored 16 points in the first half for the second-consecutive game on the road this season. He also finished with a career-high 29 against the Cougars.
– Tyler Seibring set a new career-high with 13 rebounds.
– The Phoenix held College of Charleston to 26.7% shooting from the floor in the first half, the lowest percentage an opponent has shot in a half against Elon this season.
– College of Charleston’s 22 points in the first half was tied for the least amount of points given up in a half by Elon this season, matching Northeastern’s 22 on Jan. 26.
– Luke Eddy finished with three assists at College of Charleston and now has 270 for his career. He needs six more to move into the top-10 of the program’s career-assists leaders.