Eagles Go 3-0 in SoCon With 69-63 Win Over Elon
ELON, N.C. - Behind a splendid effort from Eric Ferguson (Statesboro, Ga.), Georgia Southern Men's Basketball went 3-0 in the Southern Conference with a 69-63 victory over Elon. The victory snapped a 26-game road losing streak and handed the Phoenix their first home loss of the season.
"We have been a bunch of road warriors this season and I'm glad that those tough nights out on the road have paid off with a win tonight," said Head Coach Charlton "C.Y." Young. "Today we played with some heart to get back in the game after falling behind early. With about ten minutes left I looked over at our coaching staff and said we were going to win. I'm very proud of the way our guys took control of the game in the later minutes."
Ferguson finished the night with a season-high 21 points and a career-best 14 rebounds for his fourth career double-double and second this season. The junior forward also grabbed a team-high three steals as GSU owned the Elon paint, 30-24.
Senior Ben Drayton III (St. Marys, Ga.) scored 17 points while Willie Powers III (Gainesville, Fla.) dropped 16 points to go with six assists. The rest of the Georgia Southern scoring came from a balanced effort from the Eagle bench.
The Eagles opened the night with a uncharacteristically low 23.5% mark from the field in the first half as Georgia Southern trailed 30-22 at the break. Elon needed a three-pointer at the horn to extend the lead to eight points. In the opening period, Elon led by as many as 13.
Out of the break, Elon extended the lead back to 14 before Georgia Southern mounted a charge the spanned the middle portions of the second half. The Eagles cut the lead down to three points with 5:24 remaining on a 13 footer from Drayton as he scored his 12th point of the night. A layup on the next trip up the floor brought the lead to just one with five minutes remaining.
A jumper for Ferguson in the post at 4:32 gave GSU its first lead since the early minutes, 56-55. The lead was traded once more, but the Eagles would go up five points with 2:21 left before Elon made a charge.
An old-fashioned three-point play and a conventional trey from the Phoenix cut the lead to two points with 33 seconds remaining. That, however, would be as close as Elon would get with the Eagles making all their free throws in the final three minutes.
Georgia Southern trailed by 14 points as late as the 16:07 mark in the second half to rebound for the victory. The Eagles shot 59.3% from the field in the second half while holding Elon to a 35.9% mark for the game.
The Eagles will be back on the floor in less than 48 hours for a vital SoCon South Division showdown against the Davidson Wildcats. The game is on the SoCon TV Network as well as ESPN3.com starting at 3 p.m. from Belk Arena.
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- Category: Men's Basketball
- Published on Thursday, 05 January 2012 22:06