The Elon University men’s basketball team has found itself on the right side of a few buzzer-beaters in the last few years, but the Phoenix got a dose of their own medicine Tuesday, Nov. 19, when Canisius College senior guard Billy Baron hit a three-pointer as time expired to give the Golden Griffins an 86-85 victory in the NIT Season Tip-Off in Piscataway, N.J.
With 2:43 to play in the game, Elon lead Canisius 85-77. The Golden Griffins finished the contest on a 9-0 run, which was capped by Baron’s made three-pointer.
With the clock winding down, Elon turned the ball over with 10.1 seconds to play, allowing Canisius a chance at a tie or win. Baron fired his shot from the top of the arc to bury the Phoenix.
While Canisius needed a 9-0 run to win the game, Elon used a 15-0 run to go up 10 with 10 minutes left in the second half after trailing by five points. Freshman Luke Eddy scored eight points during the run off the bench to lead the charge. Eddy finished tied as the game’s leading scorer with senior forward Lucas Troutman. Each scored 23 points. Eddy made 5 of 10 shots from the floor, including going 11-for-11 from the free throw line.
Two areas for concern entering the contest had been free throw shooting and rebounding. Elon missed three free throws against Canisius, making 24 of 27 in the game.
LAST TIME OUT: Drexel holds off Elon run
After getting manhandled on the boards in the first game of the NIT Season Tip-Off by Drexel University, Elon outrebounded Canisius 34-25, pulling down 13 offensive rebounds and earning 17 second-chance points. The Phoenix got one offensive rebound the night before against Drexel.
Three-point shooting struggled against Drexel, as the Phoenix made just two three-pointers for the first time since the 2011-2012 season against the Dragons. Elon’s shooters warmed up again against the Golden Griffins to the tune of 9 of 19 from beyond the arc and 26 of 57 overall, good for 45.6 percent. Sophomore Tanner Samson went 4-for-6 from behind the arc, totaling 16 points in the game.
Barron led the way for Canisius, scoring 21 points and playing all 40 minutes. Senior guard Chris Perez shot 7 of 11 from the floor and finished with 16 points.
Having lost both games in Piscataway, Elon now plays Monday and Tuesday, Nov. 25-26, in the consolation rounds of the NIT Season Tip-Off. Games will be played on campus sites of the remaining teams, but opponents are still to be determined.