Elon Sports Information
ELON, N.C. – The Elon Phoenix gave the home crowd something to cheer about in its final contest of 2011 in Alumni Gym as seven players scored in double figures en route to a 109-67 victory over the Lynchburg Hornets in non-conference men’s basketball action on Sunday afternoon. Elon (7-2) shot a blistering 53 percent from the field and drained 13 three-pointers in the victory.
Elon is off to its best start since the 1990-91 team opened with a 14-2 mark. The last time the Phoenix scored 100 or more points was in last year’s meeting with Lynchburg — a 102-63 defeat of the Hornets on Dec. 14, 2010.
“The final score was not indicative of the game,” commented Elon head coach Matt Matheny. “Hilliary Scott is a great coach and Lynchburg is a much improved team. We played much better in the second half. I think we played hard for 40 minutes at every position which was the goal.”
Rookie Austin Hamilton led all scorers with 16 points, connecting on 6-of-8 field goals while also dishing off five assists. Sophomores Lucas Troutman and Sebastian Koch each added 15 points and Koch came up one board short of a double-double for the second straight game. Drew Spradlin (14), Jack Isenbarger (13), Egheosa Edomwonyi (12) and Brett Ervin (10) also netted double figures for the Phoenix. Elon finished with a 47-39 edge on the glass and had seven blocks in the game.
The Hornets, who average 93.0 ppg, were led by Nate Campbell’s 14 points. This was only the second game of the year that Lynchburg did not manage at least 90 points.
After Lynchburg (7-3) nailed seven first-half treys to remain within striking distance, Elon came out of the locker room on an 18-5 tear and held the visitors without a field goal for nearly six minutes to push its advantage to 68-44 with 13:52 to go. The Elon defense was stifling in the final 20 minutes as Lynchburg managed only 9-of-35 (.257) from the field including 1-of-9 (.111) from downtown.
The Phoenix outscored the Hornets 59-28 in the second stanza, dominating the paint while draining 8-of-14 from beyond the arc. Elon held its seventh opponent of the year under 40 percent shooting as Lynchburg ended the game shooting 33.8 percent.
After Elon jumped out to a 21-13 lead in a fast-paced first half, a Manny Hernandez three ball sparked a 10-2 Hornets’ run that tied the game at 23 with 10:47 remaining in the half.
Troutman answered on the ensuing possession for the Phoenix, scoring two of his 13 first-half points to put Elon back on top. Troutman began and ended a 10-2 stretch for the Phoenix as the home team grabbed a double-digit advantage, 35-25, with 6:08 to play.
Lynchburg managed to trim the lead to five, but Hamilton knocked in the next seven Phoenix points, including two buckets from long range as the Elon lead moved back to double figures, 42-32. A Troutman dunk on an inbounds pass and a Koch three ball in the final minute pushed the lead to 11, 50-39, at the half.
Elon will finish up final exams this week before trekking to Dartmouth for a Saturday showdown with the Big Green. Tip is scheduled for noon on December 17.