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Dalton Bolon, No. 22 Charleston too strong for Elon

Jan 14, 2023; Charleston, South Carolina, USA; Charleston Cougars forward Ante Brzovic (10) shoots the ball over Elon Phoenix forward John Bowen III (33) in the first half at TD Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Yeazell-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: David Yeazell-USA TODAY Sports

Dalton Bolon scored 21 points and No. 22 College of Charleston put together a strong second half to rebuff Elon’s upset bid in a 78-60 victory Saturday at Charleston, S.C.

The Cougars (18-1, 6-0 Colonial Athletic Association) used a 13-0 run early in the second half to wipe out a small deficit to extend their nation-leading winning streak to 17 games.

Ante Brzovic had 17 points, Reyne Smith supplied 14 points and five assists, and Ryan Larson recorded 12 points for Charleston, which was coming off a two-point victory in Wednesday night’s showdown at UNC Wilmington.

Elon’s Max Mackinnon collected 17 points and 13 rebounds in his second game from a brief injury absence. Zac Ervin added 11 points and Torrence Watson provided 10 points for the Phoenix, who committed 20 turnovers.

Elon (2-16, 0-5), which hasn’t defeated a Division I opponent this season, led 34-32 at halftime. The Phoenix stretched the edge to 36-33 on Sam Sherry’s basket.

Then the Cougars got clicking. Larson hit two of Charleston’s three 3-point baskets in a 74-second span. The margin swelled to 54-40 on Bolon’s 3-pointer with just less than 12 minutes to play.

Elon managed just 11 points in the first 10 minutes of the second half. The Phoenix hit three 3s in a stretch of less than two minutes, but still trailed 60-49 after that burst because Smith and Bolon both hit 3-pointers for the Cougars during that span.

The Phoenix was within 66-55 with 4 1/2 minutes to play, but turnovers on its next two possessions pretty much doomed hopes of a comeback.

Charleston settled for a steady diet of 3-point launches, shooting 15-for-45 from beyond the arc. That was well more than half of the Cougars’ total attempts from the field (27-for-70).

Charleston was charged with just six turnovers. Jaylon Scott had 11 rebounds for the Cougars.

Charleston has won 26 of 35 all-time meetings with Elon.

–Field Level Media