ELON, N.C. – Elon University men’s basketball could not overcome a second-half run by No. 25 Furman and fell to the Paladins 98-77 on Tuesday night, Dec. 4, inside Schar Center.
Elon (3-6) had four players score in double figures, led by Steven Santa Ana’s game-high 21 points. Tyler Seibringadded 19 points, Sheldon Eberhardt added 13 points and a team-high six assists, while Nathan Priddy chipped in 11 points for the Phoenix. Simon Wright added six points and three rebounds off the bench.
Five Furman (9-0) players scored in double figures against the Phoenix. Matt Rafferty and Alex Hunter each totaled a team-best 18 points, Clay Mounce tabbed 17 points and nine rebounds, Jordan Lyons finished with 13 points and Mike Bothwell chipped in 11 off the bench for the 25th-ranked Paladins.
The Paladins got off to a hot start and took a 21-7 lead with 11:37 remaining in the first half. Elon sliced Furman’s lead to as little as six when Santa Ana’s triple made the score 30-24 with 7:58 on the clock. However, Furman stretched its lead back out to 12 points, but a late layup by Seibring cut the Paladins’ lead to 39-29 at the break.
Elon opened the second half strong cutting Furman’s lead to as little as five twice, with the second coming after Seibring made a jumper to make the score 43-38 at the 17:37 mark. The Paladins came right back with a 7-0 run until 16:43 to retake a 12-point advantage following Hunter’s layup on a fast break.
Undaunted, the Phoenix chipped away at the deficit and a 13-5 spurt over the next four minutes, trimming Furman’s lead to 55-52 following a Simon Wright three with 12:24 to play and forcing the Paladins to call a timeout.
Using run that included an 18-3 surge over a 3:19 span, Furman jumped out to a 23-point lead at 87-64 with 4:48 to go, which solidified the victory. The Paladins got out to as much as a 24-point advantage with 59 seconds remaining and took the 98-77 victory.
– Tyler Seibring has scored in double figures in 32 of his last 35 games after tallying 19 against Furman. He has scored 1,393 career points and ranks 16th in program history.
– Santa Ana posted his ninth-career 20+ point game with 21 against the Paladins. He now has 1,047 career points, which ranks 35th in program history.
– Nathan Priddy has now scored 10 or more points in three of his last four games after finishing with 11 against Furman.
– Furman narrowed the deficit in the all-time series against the Phoenix with the win as Elon holds an 11-6 advantage.
– Elon falls to 0-27 all-time against ranked opponents since joining the NCAA Division I ranks during the 1999-00 season.
The Phoenix returns to Schar Center on Friday, Dec. 7, to face Triad rival and former Southern Conference foe UNCG at 7 p.m. The matchup against the reigning SoCon Champions will be broadcasted on Phoenix All-Access.