Four players in double figures and consistent shooting helped Appalachian State University women's basketball (4-12, 2-3 SBC) cruise past Georgia State in a 77-62 triumph on Thursday evening inside the Holmes Center.
App State snaps a seven-game skid at home with its first victory of the season inside the Holmes Center. The Mountaineers also capture their first win at home against Georgia State (4-12, 0-5 SBC) in Boone, as the Panthers held a 3-0 mark on the Apps' home floor coming into the game.
The Mountaineer offense was clicking on all cylinders scoring a season-high in points and posting a season-best 56.3 field goal percentage. Appalachian's mark was on target from beyond the arc as it shot 9-for-17 from the field, giving the Black and Gold a 52.9 percent shooting clip. Seven of the nine Mountaineers who played scored with four players shooting 50 percent or better from the floor.
Tierra Wilson (Winston-Salem, N.C./R.J. Reynolds) poured in a game-high 22 points on an efficient 7-for-12 shooting from the field with a 5-of-8 performance from 3-point range. The freshman guard added three assists with just one turnover in 39 minutes. Bayley Plummer (Thomasville, N.C./ East Davidson) snagged her seventh double-double of the season with 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting and a game-high 12 rebounds. Nicola Mathews (Adelaide, Australia/College of Central Florida) had her best game of the season at home, as she scored 13 points and shot 3-of-5 from deep while dishing out a game-best four assists. Mathews did her damage scoring all 10 of her second-half points in the third quarter.
LaPresha Stanley (Rockledge, Fla./Rockledge) scored 10 points and corralled six off the glass, while Armani Hampton (Winston-Salem, N.C./Atkins) battled inside scoring nine points and picking up seven off the glass.
Both teams came out hot on offense as they shot above 50 percent from the floor. With 2:14 left in the opening frame, a Madison Newby 3-pointer gave the Panthers their largest lead of the game, 17-12. However, the Mountaineers climbed back to tie the game at 19-apiece to end the quarter on a 7-2 spurt. Plummer started the surge with a layup before Wilson canned a 3-pointer followed by Maya Calder (Landover, Md./National Christian Academy) a layup to tie up the contest.
Appalachian continued the hot shooting in the second half hitting its first four shots of the frame thanks to a layup by Hampton. The bucket pushed the lead to 31-24 and capped off a stretch of nine-straight made field goals. GSU stayed within striking distance to five at the end of the half, 36-31. App State shot a blistering 61.9 percent from the field, and the Black and Gold held GSU to just 33.3 percent shooting from the floor in the second period. Appalachian moved the ball around really well on offense assisting on 10-of-13 field goals.
Coming out of the second half, the Panthers tried to get back into the game when Kierra Henry hit a 3-pointer to cut the lead to seven 43-36. But an 11-4 run over the next 3:21 pushed the advantage to 14, 54-40. Appalachian would stay ahead by double digits the rest of the period, as it went into the quarter with a 59-47 lead.
Georgia State sliced into the gap cutting the lead to single digits, 61-53. But the Mountaineers turned it on and pulled away going on an 11-0 spurt to balloon the lead at its most significant of 19 points, 73-52, thanks after a layup from Plummer. The Mountaineers cruised the rest of the way to pick up back-to-back victories for the first time this season.
After the Panthers shot 53.3 percent from the field and 3-of-6 from beyond the arc, the App State defense clamped down limiting GSU to 34.9 percent shooting and 3-of-14 from 3-point land. Kierra Henry scored a Panther-high 17 points but scored just seven points in the second half and shot just 3-of-9 (10 pts/5-of-8 - 1st half).
The battle on the boards belonged to Appalachian, as it outrebounded GSU, 38-23. App State allowed seven offensive rebounds in the 1st half but made sure that GSU wouldn't continue the trend in the second half with the Panthers only grabbing three in the stanza.
App State will go for its first weekend Sun Belt sweep since the 2015-16 season when it hosts conference archrival Georgia Southern on Black Saturday at 1 p.m. inside the Holmes Center.
"Tonight was a great team effort. I am really proud of the way we took care of the basketball and how we rebounded. I love the continuous growth of our basketball team." - Head Coach Angel Elderkin
- The Mountaineers are 3-0 this season when Wilson scores 20 or more points
- Wilson and Mathews are averaging a combined 39.5 points over the last two games while shooting 55.6 percent from the floor and 60 percent from deep
- Appalachian has outrebounded its opponents over the past six games highlighted by a rebounding margin of plus-10 over the stretch
- In four wins this season, the Mountaineers are shooting a solid 50 percent from 3-point range (25.3 percent in losses)
- App State's 1.185 points per possession is a season high, topping the previous season high of 1.023 in the win against ULM
- Calder led the team with a plus-16 in 13 minutes thanks to a solid game off the bench scoring five points with seven rebounds
- Plummer the led the Mountaineers with a PER of 27, while Wilson had a PER of 20
- Appalachian is 5-5 all-time against GSU