Elon’s Samson, UConn’s Stewart net Basketball Player of the Week honors


The first ASN men’s and women’s Basketball Players of the Week for December, as chosen by ASN’s Mark Adams and Monica McNutt, combined for 26-of-46 shooting from the floor — including 3-pointers — in three victories.

Tanner Samson, Elon

Samson_TannerThe 6-4 senior established a new a career high while breaking an Elon school record this past week for the Phoenix.

In a 103-93 overtime win against Kennesaw State he scored a career-high 31 points and added 11 rebounds while shooting 56% from the floor (9-16), and 53% on 3-pointers (8-15). Tanner led a fantastic finish as Elon trailed 89-81 with 18.9 seconds remaining in regulation. Samson came up with a key steal with three seconds remaining in regulation that led to three free throws by Luke Eddy to send the game into overtime. Elon outscored Kennesaw State 8-0 in regulation to tie the game and then took control with a 14-4 run in the extra period.

Tanner followed up that game with 15 points and 8 rebounds in a 77-71 win at Florida International. He added five more 3-pointers to give him 267 for his career, a school record. For the week Tanner Samson averaged 23.0 points and 9.5 rebounds while shooting 50% from the floor (14-28) and 48% on 3-pointers (13-27).

Samson is shooting 38% this season from 3-point range with 86% of his field-goal attempts originating from behind the arc. Last season he made 103 threes, third most in CAA single-season history.

Breanna Stewart, UConn

ASN-Breanna-Stewart-POWNo. 1 vs. No. 3. UConn vs. Notre Dame. Geno Auriemma vs. Muffet McGraw.

I’m personally glad this matchup has withstood conference realignment. In this latest round, which UConn won 91-81 on Saturday, both Breanna Stewart and Moriah Jefferson picked up where they left off in the last year’s national championship game and Morgan Tuck made her presence known.

I’m giving player of the week nod to Stewart (28 points on 12-of-18 shooting from the field and 10 rebounds). Stewart is a known force to be reckoned with because of her size and versatility and Saturday night was no different. Obviously a top if not the No. 1 pick in the WNBA draft, Stewart is locked in and leading her team by example.

Good luck slowing her down.

Above: Elon’s Tanner Samson is shooting 38%this season from 3-point range with 86% of his field-goal attempts originating from behind the arc. (Courtesy of University of Michigan Athletics)

Mark Adams and Monica McNutt

Mark Adams is ASN’s lead men’s basketball analyst. Monica McNutt is a reporter and host for ASN.