Dukes fall at home to Elon

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HARRISONBURG, Va. -- Four different players scored in double figures for James Madison on Thursday night, but cold second-half shooting allowed Elon to hand the Dukes a 70-62 loss in Colonial Athletic Association men's basketball action in the penultimate game at the Convocation Center.

The James Madison men's basketball team lost at home to Elon, 70-62, Thursday night.

The Dukes (9-17, 2-13 CAA) battled through a back-and-forth opening period before hitting just eight of 26 (30.8%) second-half shots, including three of 13 (23.1%) three-pointers, as the Phoenix (11-18, 7-9 CAA) pulled away late.

Junior Matt Lewis racked up 23 points on the evening to lead the way for JMU, collecting his 1,500th career point along with seven rebounds and three assists. Juniors Darius Banks, Zach Jacobs and Dwight Wilson all added 11 points apiece, with Wilson adding eight boards and Banks grabbing four steals.

Freshman Hunter McIntosh led Elon with 27 points and nine rebounds on 8-of-9 shooting, including a 6-of-7 performance behind the arc.

After playing to a 23-23 tie, JMU went on a 5-0 run with 4:16 left in the first half, culminating in a three from Lewis, to take a 28-23 lead. Elon then responded to tie things up at 34-34 heading into halftime. JMU got the job done in the paint in the first half, scoring 20 of its 34 points close to the basket.

Elon gradually pushed to a 62-53 advantage before JMU responded by going on a 5-0 run, finished off by Banks' three, to shrink the deficit to 62-58 with 1:10 to go in the contest. Elon responded and outscored the Dukes the rest of the way at the line to close JMU out.

"One of those games that's close at the half and you have to make the plays after halftime to pull out a win. When you're playing in the league, the margin is that small and you have to be able to compete every possession."

- Junior Matt Lewis became the seventh player and third junior in JMU history to score his 1,500th career point, hitting a free throw in the final minute to finish on the mark exactly.
- Junior Darius Banks picked up four steals, giving him 145 on his career and tying him for the second-most in JMU history with David Dupont (1979-83). Pierre Curtis (2006-10) holds the program record with 175.
- Junior Dwight Wilson notched his 30th career double-digit scoring game.

The Dukes will stay at home on Saturday for the final men's basketball game at the JMU Convocation Center, the Dukes' home court for the last 38 seasons, when they welcome William & Mary to Harrisonburg for the 100th meeting between the two schools at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22.

JMU will recognize its seniors in a pregame ceremony, all men's basketball alumni at halftime and will allow fans to take pictures on the court after one final streamer toss after the final buzzer.