Sunday, 03 December 2017 22:48

Appalachian State Men's Basketball Downs South Florida

Ronshad Shabazz scored 21 points in the Mountaineers win Ronshad Shabazz scored 21 points in the Mountaineers win Appalachian State Athletics

The Appalachian State men's basketball team remained perfect at home in the 2017-18 season with a 84-61 victory over South Florida on Saturday evening in the Holmes Center.

App State (5-4) is now 4-0 at the Holmes Center this season, which is their best home start since the 2009-10 season, when the Mountaineers won their first five home contests.

Junior Ronshad Shabazz (Raleigh, N.C./Huntington Prep) paced the Mountaineers with 21 points, a season-high tying five assists and two steals.

Freshman Justin Forrest (Decatur, Ga./Greenforest McCalep Christian Academy) added 19 points, a career-high five assists and a career-high tying two steals.

Junior Tyrell Johnson (Atlanta, Ga./Stephenson) finished with 13 points (11 in the second half) on 6-of-8 (75.0 percent) shooting, three rebounds and two assists. Sophomore Isaac Johnson (Charlotte, N.C./Providence Day) recorded his third double digit rebounding game of the season, pulling down 10.

After the Bulls (4-5) jumped out to an early 7-5 lead, Appalachian took control of the game, scoring the next 11 points to build a 16-7 advantage.

South Florida would pull to within six points at 20-14, before the Apps countered with a 7-0 run to open a 27-14 lead with 8:50 left in the first half. The Black and Gold held their double digit lead for the remainder of the half and took a 44-33 lead into the intermission.

The Mountaineers remained in control in the second half, never letting their lead get below 11 points. App State would open their largest lead of the contest at 82-59 with just under two minutes to go on a jumper by senior Griffin Kinney (Delaware, Ohio/Fork Union Military Academy).

The Apps shot 51.6 percent (33-of-64) from the field, which was their highest shooting percentage of the season. In addition, Appalachian also went 10-of-11 (90.9 percent) from the charity stripe.

The Black and Gold finished with 17 assists, marking the fourth time they have recorded over 15 assists in a game this season. The Mountaineers also forced the Bulls into 17 turnovers, scoring 26 points off of the 17 miscues.

Appalachian State will now begin a season long four-game road trip on Monday evening, traveling to take on Western Carolina at 7 p.m.

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