WILMINGTON, North Carolina – Elon used a 15-4 midway through the second half to defeat UNCW, 75-64, in collegiate women’s basketball action Wednesday at Trask Coliseum.

In a matchup of future Colonial Athletic Association opponents, the Phoenix improved to 2-0 on the season while the Seahawks slipped to 0-2.  

Senior Kelsey Harris scored 16 points and added a 10 assists to pace an Elon attack that shot 43.8 (28-of-64) percent from the field and was 15-of-21 (.714) from the free-throw line. Freshman Lauren Brown pitched in 13 points while fellow newcomer Jenifer Brown added 12 points and 10 rebounds for her first collegiate double-double.  

Freshmen Brie Mobley and Naqaiyyah Teague tallied 16 points apiece for UNCW, who shot 44.4 percent (24-of-54) from the field but were just 2-of-16 (.125) from 3-point range and 14-of-24 (.583) at the free-throw line. Junior Kelva Atkins joined the duo in double figures with 15 points.

Holding a 49-47 lead with just over 10 minutes remaining in the contest, a pair of free throws by Rhodes sparked the Phoenix to score eight unanswered points and start the game-changing spurt that lasted 4:37 and gave Elon its largest lead of the game, 64-51, with 5:44 remaining.

A Mobley layup ended the Phoenix spurt and ignited an 11-4 stretch that allowed UNCW to pull within six, 68-62, with 2:28 on the clock.

That would be as close as the Seahawks would get, however, as Harris knocked down five of six free-throw attempts to key a 7-2 run that closed out the contest and gave the Phoenix an 11-point victory.  

Earlier in the contest, Elon trailed 15-14 midway through the first half before a jumper by freshman Lauren Brown sparked the Phoenix to a 12-5 spurt and a 26-20 advantage.

An Atkins 3-pointer from the right elbow ended the Elon run and pulled the Seahawks within three, 26-23, but the Phoenix rattled off six points over a 63-second span to take its largest lead of the opening frame, 32-25, with 1:16 remaining.

Leading 32-28 at the break, Elon scored seven of the first nine points of the second half to build a 39-32 cushion, only to see the Seahawks respond with a 7-2 spurt of its own to make it a two-point contest, 41-39.

The two teams would trade baskets over the next three minutes before Rhodes converted her two free-throw attempts to start the decisive spurt.  

UNCW returns to action Saturday with a 2 p.m. matinee against Northern Kentucky that serves as the first half of a men’s and women’s doubleheader that as the men play Wingate in their home opener at 7 p.m. Elon is back on the floor Sunday with a 2 p.m. tip-off at VCU.

 

GAME NOTES:

 

  • The win gives Elon a 4-3 lead in the all-time series between the two programs. Wednesday’s contest was the first of the last five meetings between the two teams to be decided by more than six points.
  • UNCW moved to 32-9 all-time in home openers as the Seahawks had their nine-game winning streak in home openers snapped. The Seahawks last loss in a home opener came in a 77-56 setback to Loyola Marymount on Nov. 23, 2003.
  • The Seahawks slipped to 16-14 against North Carolina-based schools since the 2007-08 season.
  • Elon held a 38-35 advantage on the glass as it pulled down 15 offensive rebounds.
  • Elon finished with 17 assists on 28 baskets while UNCW recorded six assists on 24 made baskets.
  • The two teams combined to record 34 turnovers (UNCW 19; Elon 15)
  • UNCW held a 16-10 edge in fastbreak points.
  • Elon’s bench out-scored UNCW’s reserves by a 21-10 margin.
  • Junior Kelva Atkins reached double figures for the second straight contest this season and the eighth straight contest dating back to the end of last season.
  • Atkins also matched her career high with eight rebounds, equaling her mark set against Tulane on Dec. 2, 2012. She led the Seahawks in rebounding during Wednesday’s contest.
  • Freshman Brie Mobley scored in double figures for the second straight contest.
  • Freshman Naqaiyyah Teague scored in double figures for the first time in her career.