Elon still remembers its 98-88 loss to Georgia Southern last year.
In that game, Antonio Hanson dropped nine 3-pointers on his way to a career-high 39 points as the Eagles came back from an 11-point halftime deficit and won their fifth Southern Conference game of the season.
Rory Spencer, Cameron Baskerville and Ben Drayton remember it too, and when the Phoenix host GSU today at 7 p.m. at Elon, N.C., they will have to focus their revenge on those three Eagles.
They were the only ones on the team this time last season.
Of the new faces on the GSU roster, Eric Ferguson continues to have the biggest impact. The freshman, who averages 14.4 points and 6.1 rebounds per game, and matched his career high with 24 points in Thursday’s 87-75 loss at UNC Greensboro.
“It was great to see the real Eric Ferguson show up,” said GSU coach Charlton Young. “[An] injury set him back for a couple games. He missed some practice time and some games, and this is really the first time when we started practice this week that he was fully recovered. That’s a huge plus for this team.”
Still, the Eagles (4-16, 0-7 Southern Conference) are still looking for their first SoCon win and first road win of the 2010-11 season.
“There’s no moral victories,” said Young, “you’ve got to get it done. And that’s where we are – we’ve got to get it done.”
Though the Spartans won for the third time in a row and snapped a 15-game losing streak that started the season, and the Eagles have had their opportunities to get the first conference win in recent matchups against UNCG and Wofford, Young feels the importance in getting a road win over Elon (9-10, 3-5).
“We should be winning these games,” Young said, “and we’re kind of getting to the point where we’ve got to live in the moment and not thinking about the games we’ve played in the past, not what’s going on in the future, just doing our jobs to try to get this game.”
The Phoenix snapped a two-game losing streak win Thursday’s 77-70 win over Davidson, and are 6-2 at home in Alumni Gym.
Elon is led by a trio of double-digit scorers, with Drew Spradlin leading the way, averaging 14.4 points per game. Point guard Chris Long checks in at 13.8 points per game and Jack Isenbarger averages 12.6
Drayton continues leading the Eagles, with 15.3 points per game, followed by Ferguson and Spencer (11.2).
Matt Yogus can be reached at (912) 489-9408.