Last-second layup gives Elon 63-61 win over UNCG
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Elon's Ali Ford drove the lane and got a scoop layup to fall as the final horn sounded to lift the visiting Phoenix past UNCG in a battle of Southern Conference leaders on Wednesday, 63-61.
With the game tied at 61 and the final seconds ticking down, UNCG (9-8, 6-3 SoCon) had possession of the ball and a chance to hold on for the final shot. Dayshaun Richbow, who just seconds earlier was poised to be the hero with a tiebreaking 3-pointer, was called for a travel, giving Elon the ball with 6 seconds left.
The Phoenix (12-5, 7-2 SoCon) put the ball into the hands of its leader and Ford didn't disappoint, rushing up the court and getting the shot off in the nick of time to give Elon the win.
After a brief look at the replay, the officials determined the basket counted, and the sizeable Elon contingent that made the short trip down I-85 celebrated the Phoenix victory.
Just moments earlier, Richbow had the home crowd on its feet with a 3 from the top of the key that made it 61-58 in the Spartans' favor with 44.6 seconds left. Elon had an answer, however, as Lei Lei Hairston connected from the top of the key on the other end for the Phoenix's only 3-pointer of the night, tying the contest at 61.
UNCG got the ball back with just a second's difference between the game clock and the shot clock, meaning the Spartans could have taken the clock almost down to zero with a chance for the win or overtime. Instead, Elon got the turnover it needed and converted on the other end for its only lead of the second half.
The Spartans had held Ford in check for most of the night, as Elon's scoring leader picked up two early fouls and played just 21 minutes on the evening. She finished with nine points, more than seven below her season average.
Hairston finished with a game-high 15 for the Phoenix, while Shon Redmond and Aiesha Harper had 12 each. Kelsey Evans had nine points, 11 rebounds and five blocked shots.
After the teams traded the lead 11 times in the first half, UNCG took a 30-29 lead into halftime. The Spartans opened the second frame on a 14-5 run to push its lead to 10 at 44-34, with Stevenson scoring six points in the spurt.
Jumpers from Ford and Evans got Elon back to within six, but a Breonna Patterson 3-pointer and a Floyd layup gave the Spartans their biggest lead of the evening, 49-38 with 10:47 to play.
The Phoenix chipped away at the lead little by little, eventually getting it down to two with a 7-0 run that made it 56-54 with 4:12 left.
Richbow drove the lane for a nifty layup with about a second left on the shot clock to make it a two-possession game again, but Ford hit a jumper after a UNCG shot clock violation on its next possession to again make it a two-point affair.
A Harper layup tied it at 58 with 1:31 left before Richbow's big 3 on the other end set up the exciting finish.
UNCG returns to action Saturday against Appalachian State, which entered play Wednesday tied atop the league standings with Elon and the Spartans. The Mountaineers topped Davidson 83-66, meaning UNCG will be playing the first-place team in the league for the second straight contest. Opening tip is set for 2 p.m. at Fleming Gymnasium.
ELON 63, UNCG 61
ELON (12-5, 7-2 SoCon)
HAIRSTON,Lei Lei 6-10 2-6 15; HARPER, Aiesha 5-6 2-2 12; REDMOND,Shon 6-12 0-1 12; EVANS, Kelsey 4-8 1-2 9; FORD,Ali 4-8 1-2 9; TAYLOR,Julie 2-5 0-0 4; HARRIS,Kelsey 1-3 0-2 2; ARCHIE, Lisa 0-1 0-4 0; KETO, Erica 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 28-53 6-19 63.
UNCG (9-8, 6-3 SoCon)
Monique Floyd 6-15 1-2 13; Dayshaun Richbow 5-10 0-0 11; Janae' Stevenson 2-8 5-10 9; Kendra Smith 3-8 0-0 8; Amanda Leigh 3-12 0-0 7; Breonna Patterson 2-3 0-0 6; Jazz Weaver 1-2 0-0 3; Brey Dorsett 1-2 0-0 2; Sarah Folwell 1-2 0-0 2; Sidnei Harmon 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 24-64 6-12 61.
Elon.......................... 29 34 - 63
UNCG.......................... 30 31 - 61
3-point goals--Elon 1-4 (HAIRSTON,Lei Lei 1-2; REDMOND,Shon 0-1; FORD,Ali 0-1), UNCG 7-19 (Breonna Patterson 2-3; Kendra Smith 2-3; Dayshaun Richbow 1-2; Jazz Weaver 1-1; Amanda Leigh 1-7; Sarah Folwell 0-1; Brey Dorsett 0-1; Monique Floyd 0-1). Fouled out--Elon-None, UNCG-None. Rebounds--Elon 39 (EVANS, Kelsey 11), UNCG 36 (Janae' Stevenson 8). Assists--Elon 6 (HARPER, Aiesha 3), UNCG 12 (Monique Floyd 3). Total fouls--Elon 12, UNCG 15. Technical fouls--Elon-None, UNCG-None. A-493
- UNCG -