GREENSBORO, N.C. – UNCG's women's basketball team dropped its sixth straight game Monday, shooting 23.9 percent from the floor in falling to Southern Conference rival Elon, 69-50, at Fleming Gymnasium.
Elon's Ali Ford scored a game-high 19 points on the evening, while Kelsey Evans had 11 to go with nine rebounds. Greensboro native Sam Coffer also flirted with a double-double with eight points and nine boards.
Natalie Headley scored 14 points to lead UNCG (3-19, 2-12 SoCon), with Janae' Stevenson adding eight points and seven rebounds.
The Spartans were in control of the contest early, but saw the Phoenix (12-11, 8-6 SoCon) weather the storm and pull away in the second half.
UNCG pressured Elon into 15 first-half turnovers, with nine of them in the first nine minutes of play. The Spartans shot just 25 percent (4-for-16) to that point, but were a perfect 8-for-8 from the free throw line in that stretch and took a 17-11 lead on Sarah Folwell's 3-pointer from the corner with 11:03 to go in the first.
A pair of baskets from Evans seemed to kick-start Elon's offense, and a Coffer jumper tied the contest at 17. Elon would not trail again.
Kelsey Harris put Elon back on top before a Headley jumper tied it again at 19. A Zora Stephenson 3-pointer put the Phoenix back up by three, and after Stevenson's short jumper made it a one-point game, Elon rattled off an 11-3 run to end the half up 33-24.
The Spartans regrouped at halftime, coming roaring out of the break on an 8-0 run to get back within a point. The second half started much like the first did, with Elon turning the ball over on three straight possessions early to let UNCG get back in it. Buckets by Headley and Stevenson and a three-point play from Breonna Patterson made it 33-31, and a Stevenson free throw made it a one-point game with 17:29 to go.
Elon would gradually stretch its lead back to six points at 39-33, but a nifty post move and layup from Nneka Awuruonye got UNCG rolling again. Awuruonye added another layup to make it a one-possession contest, and after a stop on the other end, Dayshaun Richbow raced in for a transition layup to tie the contest for the first time since midway through the first half.
Erica Keto put Elon back up by a deuce on the other end but couldn't complete the three-point play when she was fouled on the layup.
UNCG tied it again on its next trip down the floor, with Awuruonye – playing extended minutes thanks to foul trouble for Stevenson – finding freshman Jarae Savage alone underneath the basket for the easy layup to make it 41-all with 11:11 to go.
Ford put the Phoenix back on top to stay, getting an acrobatic scoop layup to fall despite having Headley draped all over her.
The Phoenix would again stretch its lead, but a Headley jumper pulled UNCG within four at 51-47 with 5:13 left. That was to be the Spartans' final field goal of the game, however, and Elon turned in a 13-2 run over the next four minutes to put the game out of reach.
UNCG forced 23 Elon turnovers on the night, but couldn't hang with the Phoenix in the paint, where Elon had a 34-18 scoring advantage.
The Spartans were just 1-for-12 (8.3 percent) from 3-point range on the night.
UNCG has little time to recover, as the Spartans head to Davidson, N.C., for a contest at Davidson on Wednesday. The game, which will be UNCG's third in five days, is set for a 7 p.m. tip.
ELON 69, UNCG 50
ELON (12-11, 8-6 SoCon)
Ali Ford 7-16 1-2 19; Kelsey Evans 4-9 3-5 11; Sam Coffer 3-6 2-2 8; Kelsey Harris 4-8 0-0 8; Aiesha Harper 2-5 3-4 7; Zora Stephenson 2-4 0-0 6; Shannen Cochraham 2-2 0-0 4; Lisa Archie 1-1 0-0 2; Erica Keto 1-2 0-1 2; Kallie Hovatter 1-2 0-0 2; Jermile' Batten 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 27-56 9-14 69.
UNCG (3-19, 2-12 SoCon)
Natalie Headley 3-12 8-12 14; Janae' Stevenson 2-8 4-6 8; Nneka Awuruonye 3-10 1-2 7; Jarae Savage 3-9 0-0 6; Breonna Patterson 1-10 4-6 6; Sarah Folwell 1-5 0-0 3; Sidnei Harmon 1-2 0-0 2; Jazz Weaver 1-10 0-0 2; Dayshaun Richbow 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 16-67 17-26 50.
Elon.......................... 33 36 - 69
UNCG.......................... 24 26 - 50
3-point goals--Elon 6-14 (Ali Ford 4-9; Zora Stephenson 2-2; Sam Coffer 0-2; Aiesha Harper 0-1), UNCG 1-12 (Sarah Folwell 1-4; Jarae Savage 0-3; Breonna Patterson 0-4; Natalie Headley 0-1). Fouled out--Elon-None, UNCG-None. Rebounds--Elon 47 (Kelsey Evans 9; Sam Coffer 9), UNCG 41 (Janae' Stevenson 7). Assists--Elon 16 (Aiesha Harper 8), UNCG 6 (Jarae Savage 2; Breonna Patterson 2). Total fouls--Elon 17, UNCG 15. Technical fouls--Elon-None, UNCG-None. A-425
- UNCG -