NEWARK, Del. – Elon University men’s basketball fought back into the contest after trailing at halftime, cutting its deficit in the second half to six points with 19 minutes remaining, but Delaware used a run midway through the second half to defeat the Phoenix 72-57 on Saturday night, Feb. 17, at the Bob Carpenter Center.
The Phoenix (14-14, 6-9 CAA) was led by Tyler Seibring’s game-high tying 22 points and added nine rebounds. Dainan Swoope was the second Elon player to finish in double figures, scoring 10 points. Seth Fuller and Collin Luthermade impacts in their first starts of the season. Fuller scored eight points, three rebounds and two assists, while Luther scored two points and grabbed seven rebounds, which included three on the offensive glass. Dmitri Thompsonchipped in eight points and Nathan Priddy scored six off the bench.
Delaware (12-17, 5-11 CAA) as paced by Ryan Daly’s double-double of 22 points and 12 rebounds. The Blue Hens had four players finish in double-figure scoring for the night. Ryan Allen scored 17 points, Eric Carter finished with a double-double of 11 points and 11 rebounds, and Anthony Mosley added 13 points for the Blue Hens.
“Our guys are competing really, really hard, but our confidence is really shaken and you could see that in our shooters tonight against zone defense,” said head coach Matt Matheny. “We got some really good looks against the zone and we couldn’t get shots to go down. We were as active on the offensive glass as we’ve been all year and we just had a tough night shooting the ball. That carried over to our free-throw shooting and that made it a difficult night for us.”
Only Delaware was able to make the first basket of the contest after the first four minutes as the Phoenix and Blue Hens shot a combined 1-of-15 from the floor and Delaware had a 2-0 lead at the 15:32 mark.
Swoope scored two straight layups out of the media timeout to give Elon a 4-2 lead, but Delaware put together 10 unanswered points to take a 12-4 lead with 10:28 on the clock after Mosley’s layup. Elon continued to attempt to claw into the Blue Hens’ lead over the next 3:31, cutting Delaware’s lead to as little as six-points over that time.
Following Seibring’s layup off Luther’s layup cut Delaware’s lead to 16-10, the Blue Hens responded with a 9-0 run to extend its lead to 25-10 after Cushing’s three pointer with 3:28 left in the half.
Seibring would come back and hit a three, but Daly drew a foul to give Delaware a 27-13 lead with 2:33 remaining in the opening stanza. The Phoenix outscored Delaware 10-5 over the final 2:30 of the half, which included a 6-0 run over the last 36 seconds, capped off by Swoope’s three-pointer at the halftime buzzer. Delaware held the 32-23 lead at the halftime.
Fuller opened the second half with a three to make Delaware’s lead 32-26 at the 19:09 mark, but an 8-3 run for the Blue Hens pushed the lead back to double digits, 40-29, at the 17:09 mark following Bryant’s layup.
After Delaware stretched its lead to 44-31, Elon responded with a 9-2 spurt, which included seven unanswered to cut the Blue Hens’ lead to 46-40, after Thompson’s dunk with 11:24 on the clock.
The Blue Hens made a 20-6 run over the next 6:42 to take its largest lead of the game, 66-43, with 4:35 left in the contest. Then, Priddy and Seibring hit threes to lead a 7-2 Phoenix run to make it a 68-53 Delaware lead with 3:02 to play. In an attempt to try to get back into the contest, Elon started fouling to send the Blue Hens to the free throw line, but Delaware made its free throws down the stretch to claim a 72-57 victory.
– Tyler Seibring is now 25th on the program’s all-time scoring list with 1,210 career points, passing William Massenburg ’90 (1,207) and moving into the top-25 on the scoring charts.
– Dainan Swoope moves into 38th on the all-time scoring list at 1,037 points and is one point away from Cornelius Muller ’93 in 37th.
– Collin Luther made an impact on the glass for the Phoenix, grabbing a career-high seven against the Blue Hens.
– Seibring extended his double-digit scoring streak to 16 consecutive games with 22 against the Blue Hens. He has scored in double-figures in 25 of the team’s 28 games this season.
– Swoope has now scored in double figures 19 times this season, which includes 10 times in CAA play.
– Seth Fuller and Simon Wright each made their first collegiate starts. Luther made his second-career start as a part of Elon’s lineup change.
– The Phoenix moves to 7-2 all-time against the Blue Hens with the loss.
The Phoenix hits the road for the last time this regular season on Thursday, Feb. 22, with a trip to College of Charleston. The game against the Cougars will tip off at 7 p.m. and begins a stretch of three games in five days to close out the regular season.