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Lenoir-Rhyne University announced that Moretz Stadium, home to the football and men's and women's lacrosse teams, will undergo renovation to improve the safety and game-day experience. The University's board of trustees approved a contract to demolish the seating on the home side of the stadium and replace with temporary bleachers for the 2019 season, with a more comprehensive design plan for stadium seating improvement to begin following the season.

The University recently contracted with Taylor and Viola Structural Engineers of Hickory to conduct a comprehensive engineering study and review of the stadium. The study identified issues of structural integrity on the home side seating area that needed to be addressed immediately and recommended that the University demolish the current home stands and use temporary seating for the upcoming season until new permanent seating can be installed.

"Moretz Stadium is a special venue and is home to one of the top game-day environments in all of NCAA Division II," said Kim Pate, director of athletics. "The stadium is showing its age, and it's critical that we preserve the integrity, safety, and long-term viability in support of our student-athletes, community, and dedicated alumni."

The first priority of the renovation will include demolition of the current home side stands and is scheduled to be completed by the end of July. Aluminum temporary seating will be installed on the home side in time for the start of the football season. During the season, the University will review plans and details for a more permanent solution to the home seating side, along with additional improvements that could be completed prior to the 2020 season.

"As we celebrate our 100th year anniversary of football and our 10th year of men's and women's lacrosse, this circumstances presents a timely opportunity to build on the storied tradition of LR athletics Between the Bricks," said Pate. "We remain committed to our traditions of tailgating and making the game-day experience a destination for our community and visitors."

The University will contract with a national company to install temporary bleachers with a minimum of 3,000 seats on the home side of the stadium. Bears Club reserved seating will continue to be offered to season ticket holders with anticipation of a few minor modifications to accommodate slight variations to the seating plan with the temporary bleacher layout. For questions about any modifications or changes to the Bears Club seating, members can contact Aaron Bessey, Director of the Bears Club, at aaron.bessey@lr.eduor 828-328-7946.

Moretz Stadium opened in 1924 and is named for Helen and Leonard Moretz. It is the fourth-oldest stadium in continuous use in NCAA Division II and one of the oldest in the country. In 1960, Moretz Stadium was the site for the NAIA national semifinal football game, which Lenoir-Rhyne won on its way to the only national championship in school history. Moretz Stadium was also home to a 1962 NAIA national semifinal game and a NCAA Division II semifinal game in 2013. The stadium, which as a capacity of approximately 7,500, has hosted seven NCAA football playoff games in its history, including two from the memorable 2018 season, as well as three NCAA men's lacrosse playoff games, including a national semifinal game in 2018.

The football home opener is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 7, at 6 p.m. against St. Augustine's.

(News Release From lrbears.com)

Sunday, 07 July 2019 23:23

Hickory Crawdads Edge Out Columbia

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The Crawdads defeated the Columbia Fireflies 6-5 on Sunday afternoon to cap off the four-game homestand. The 'Dads and Fireflies split the series, with each team collecting two wins.

The Fireflies collected the first run of the game in the first inning off 'Dads righty Cole Winn.

The 'Dads struck back in the bottom of the second to take a 2-1 lead. A single by Ryan Anderson and a double by Kole Enright put runners in scoring position for the Crawdads. Jonathan Ornelas ripped his fourteenth double of the season to drive in both Anderson and Enright.

They added three more runs in the third to take a 5-1 lead over Columbia. Jax Biggers reached on a fielding error before Sherten Apostel hit his thirteenth homer of the year. Pedro Gonzalez added the third run of the inning three hitters later with a solo shot to right-center, his fifteenth homerun on the season.

The Fireflies scored a run in the fourth and two in the sixth but still trailed the 'Dads 5-4.

The Crawdads pushed the lead back to two runs in the bottom half of the inning on a single by Gonzalez followed by a double by Anderson.

In the top of the seventh the Fireflies put another run on the board but we're not able to get more, falling for the second night in a row to the 'Dads.

The 'Dads return to the Frans on Monday the 15th for a three game homestand. Monday will be Mythbuster Monday and the night's promotions will be dedicated to busting common myths.

Sunday, 07 July 2019 12:02

Reed's Home Run Snaps Losing Streak

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Tyreque Reed delivered a walk-off homerun on Saturday evening as the 'Dads won 7-6 over the Columbia Fireflies.

The Crawdads took an early lead, scoring a run in the first inning. Matt Whatley doubled and came home to score on a single by Reed.

The Fireflies quickly extinguished the lead with a five-run second inning. 'Dads starting pitcher Ronny Henriquez was chased out of the game after recording just five outs.

In the bottom of the fourth the 'Dads got a run back but still trailed by three. Tyreque Reed drew a walk and took second on a wild pitch. Pedro Gonzalez doubled to bring in Reed and make the score 5-2.

The Fireflies added another run in the seventh and pushed the lead back to four runs.

For the second night in a row, the 'Dads threatened to tie the game in the bottom of the eighth by loading the bases, bringing the tying run to the plate. Pedro Gonzalez once again delivered an RBI single but the Crawdads couldn't get any more runs across.

The 'Dads tied things up in the bottom of the ninth. Jonathan Ornelas reached on a fielding error and Miguel Aparicio singled before Kole Enright hit a game tying single. Enright was thrown out trying to stretch the single into a double. Tyreque Reed crushed a homerun to send the 'Dads home with a 7-6 victory.

The homestand wraps up tomorrow night at 5pm with a Mother/Son Date Night. Date night packages are available for $25 and include 2 game tickets and 2 meal vouchers. The first 20 mothers and sons to sign up can also play catch on the field before the game and the first nine mothers can participate in the Field of Dreams and run out with the Crawdads for the National Anthem. Packages are available by calling (828) 322-3000. It is Church Bulletin Sunday and fans can their bring church bulletin to the ticket office for a discounted $6 ticket. The 'Dads will then donate $4 from each ticket to that bulletin's respective church courtesy of PDQ. Sunday is also hospitality night and hospitality and service industry professionals can get a free ticket to the game. Family and friends can purchase additional tickets for $6.

The Crawdads came up just shy of clawing back from a nine-run deficit on Friday night against the Columbia Fireflies. The 'Dads ultimately fell 11-7 but had the tying run at the plate in the eighth inning.

The Fireflies erupted for nine runs across the first five innings. They scored seven runs off top Rangers prospect Hans Crouse in his 2.1 innings of work. Tai Tiedemann came into the game in relief and gave up another two runs to put the Crawdads behind 9-0.

The 'Dads got a run back in the bottom of fifth. Matt Whatley led off the inning with his tenth double of the season and advanced to third on Frainyer Chavez's single. Miguel Aparicio drove him in with a ground out.

In the bottom of the sixth, the Crawdads added three more runs to cut the score to 9-4. Kole Enright singled to get on base for Ryan Anderson. Anderson, playing in his debut for the 'Dads, hit a two-run homer to left-center. Whatley singled to keep things going and scored on a fielder's choice.

The Crawdads once again chipped away at the Fireflies lead with a run in the seventh inning. Jax Biggers and Tyreque Reed collected singles and Sherten Apostel hit a grounder to score Biggers and make the deficit four runs.

The scoring continued in the eighth as the 'Dads got another run. They loaded the bases on a walk by Whatley and singles by Chavez and Aparicio. Pinch-hitting Pedro Gonzalez stepped up to the plate as the tying run. He singled in Whatley and kept the bases loaded but the 'Dads were not able to get any more runs across in the inning.

In the top of the ninth the Fireflies added a pair of runs to take an 11-6 lead.

Ryan Anderson answered in the bottom of the ninth with his second homerun of the evening but the 'Dads were unable to score any more.

Fans filled L.P. Frans Stadium for an Independence Day Extravaganza on Thursday evening as the 'Dads took on the Columbia Fireflies. The 'Dads rallied late but ultimately came up short, falling 5-3. Attendance was listed at 4,776.

The Fireflies got on the board first with a run in the second inning off Crawdads starting pitcher Yerry Rodriguez, who came in the game ranked third in the South Atlantic League with a 2.13 ERA.

The 'Dads evened the score at one in the bottom of the third. Kole Enright led off the bottom of the inning with his seventh double of the season and advanced to third on a bunt single by Frainyer Chavez. A wild pitch allowed Enright to score and tie the game.

Rodriguez finished the evening with six innings pitched and one run allowed. He struck out seven, walked none and gave up four hits. Rodriguez has allowed two or fewer runs in 11 of his 13 starts this season.

The game remained tied at one until the top of the eighth when the Fireflies brought in four runs to take a 5-3 lead.

The Crawdads answered with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning. Chavez and Matt Whatley drew back-to-back walks to put two runners on. Jax Biggers advanced both on a ground out. Tyreque Reed brought Chavez and Whatley in as he beat out an infield single.

The homestand continues tomorrow with another post-game fireworks show presented by Jani-King and WHKY 1290AM and 102.3FM. It is also '80s night and the evening will be packed with themes from the era. Fans who dress up can get discounted $6 tickets.

Lenoir-Rhyne Tennis Coach Tom Rees finalized his 2019-20 recruiting class with the addition of a pair of talented newcomers. Rees adds Kyriaki Mitsou and Paige Black to an already strong incoming group consisting of five additions. The incoming freshmen join a program that set a school record with 18 wins in 2018-19 and ranked as high as No. 33 in the nation.

Kyriaki "Sandy" Mitsou
Year: FR, Fall 2019
Hometown/ County: Athens/ Greece

Career Highlights:
Ranked #17 in Greece
ITF Professional Doubles Ranking #794
ITF Junior World Ranking #2522
Made it to the Main Draw Doubles Semi-Final at the 2018 Heraklion $15K Futures

Coach's Comment: "Sandy is a player that just loves tennis. The tennis court is a second home for her, and she enjoys every aspect of practicing, competing, and conditioning. Her tremendous passion for the sport has helped her become the quality player she is today. Sandy has a big game with several weapons and can use a variety of speeds and spins to throw her opponents off. I see Sandy being able to make an impact in singles and doubles right away for us."

Paige Black
Year: FR, Fall 2019
Hometown/ County: Alpharetta, Georgia

Career Highlights:
Ranked Top 30 in the state of Georgia
Top 500 National
Top 125 Southeast
National level tournament experience
Current top finishes include two southern Level 3's doubles championships

Coach's Comment: "Paige comes to us from a very competitive area of the county where she has been exposed to strong competition throughout her career, which will serve her well heading into college. Paige is extremely coachable, and is hungry to continue her development at Lenoir-Rhyne. She is a player I see tremendous potential in, I don't think her ceiling has been reached yet so I am looking forward to working with her for the next four years."

App State women's basketball head coach Angel Elderkin is excited to announce the edition of LaSalle transfer Janay Sanders (Charlotte, N.C./Mallard Creek) to the 2019 signing class.

Sanders is the second transfer (Michaela Porter (Pittsburgh, Pa./Cincinnati) - Cincinnati) and the fourth signee in the class, joining Porter, Nora Galve (Catalonia, Spain/Spain National) and Jackie Christ (Sterling, Va./Dominion). The quartet will join a Mountaineer squad that is coming off 22 wins and a Women's Basketball Invitational title. App State returns a loaded team with 12 players and four of its five starters.

"We are excited to announce the addition of Janay Sanders to our program," coach Elderkin said. "Janay posses all the qualities that we are looking for in our student-athletes on the court, in the classroom, and in the community. She is a tremendous athlete and is a perfect fit for our system at Appalachian. She gained valuable experience last season at LaSalle, and we look forward to her future development."

The Charlotte, N.C. played one season at LaSalle, where she was third on the team with 20 starts in 26 of her appearances, while she led the team in assists per game (3.0). Sanders was
tied for eighth in the A-10 Conference in assists, fourth among all freshmen in assists per game, eighth in assists per 40 minutes (4.2) and tied for sixth in assist percentage (25.3 percent).

Sanders scored in double figures in seven games highlighted by a career-high 18 points on 5-of-9 shooting at Davidson. In addition, she scored 12 points against then-No. 9 Oregon State. In a win over George Mason, Sanders dished out a personal-best nine assists.

Prior to LaSalle, Edwards posted a successful career at Mallard Creek, earning a varsity letter all four seasons. She was named to the North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) All-State Second Team after averaging 13 points per game. She was an all-conference selection her junior and senior years while participating all four years in outdoor track & field. Edwards was a four-time state competitor in high jump and three-time state participant in long jump.

Sanders is the daughter of Renee and Malcolm. Her brother, Jalen Sanders, played basketball at App State from 2014-16, while her father walked on for the Mountaineers. Her uncles are former NBA standouts, Dell Curry and Muggsy Bogues. Her godbrother is three-time NBA champion and two-time Most Valuable Player, Stephen Curry.

The Hickory Crawdads fell to the West Virginia Power 4-3 Wednesday night on the road. West Virginia jumped out to a 1-0 lead after the third inning, and both teams traded three runs in the fourth. The loss to the Power is Hickory's second in a row to West Virginia.

Kole Enright paced the Crawdads offensively as he had three hits, a run scored and an RBI. He also was walked once. Pedro Gonzalez, Jonathan Ornelas, Melvin Novoa and Enright each had a double.

Tim Brennan took the loss on the hill. He pitched five innings, allowing four hits, four runs and striking out two while walking three. Abdiel Mendoza pitched the final three innings for Hickory,, allowing only one hit while striking out three.

Hickory falls to 10-4 on the second half of the season.

The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) released its All-Academic honors — a list that includes 18 students athletes and one athletic team from Catawba Valley Community College.

This is the third-straight year that the Red Hawks have boasted at least 10 individual NJCAAA academic honorees and the fourth-straight year with at least one team academic honor from the NJCAA.

“We have been so blessed by our successes on the field of competition at CVCC. However, our academic successes continue to show the premium we place on the development of our student-athletes,” said Catawba Valley Athletic Director Nick Schroeder. “These academic awards are a way of honoring the work of our student-athletes and academic support staff as well as showing the impact of our extremely dedicated faculty and administration, who have created an environment that promotes learning in the classroom.”

The Catawba Valley women’s basketball team received the 2018-19 NJCAA Academic Team Honorable Mention accolade — the third time in the past four years that the programs has achieved this honor.

All NJCAA institution athletic teams in their respective sport who have at least a 3.0 GPA or better receive the honor. Only 738 athletic teams in the country representing 27 sports from 525 NJCAA member institutions received the honor, including 82 women’s basketball programs.

“We work hard in the classroom as well as on the court,” said Tisha England, Learning Assistance Center Coordinator and head women's basketball coach at Catawba Valley. “We take pride in being student-athletes. It takes a village to raise a child, and everyone who has contributed to our student-athletes education deserves the recognition for what our team is.”

For the first time in school history, the Red Hawks have two or more NJCAA All-Academic honorees in every sport, and three programs — baseball, volleyball and men’s basketball — had the most honorees in a single school year in their programs’ history.

Five Catawba Valley athletes — baseball player Vinny Consolo and volleyball players Madi Bolch, Abigail Gordon, Sage Harrington and Emilee Webber — were named All-American First Team for recording a perfect 4.0 grade point average during the 2018-19 school year.

The five All-Academic First Team honorees are the most in school history.

Of the 18 individual Catawba Valley student athletes honored by the NJCAA, seven are members of the Red Hawks baseball team.

Second baseman R.J. Conner, outfielder Trent Jones and pitchers Austin Blevins and Andrew Patrick were all named second team for carrying a grade point average from 3.99 to 3.8, while catcher Willie Gordon and pitcher Storm Mace were named third team members for having a GPA of 3.6 to 3.79.

Six CVCC volleyball players were honored by the NJCAA, including third team members Macy Pope and Rachel Delcamp and first teamers Webber, Bolch, Gordon and Harrington.

Two Catawba Valley men’s basketball players — Zach De La Cruz and George Paul — were both named All-Academic third team.

Deja Ross led the women’s basketball honorees with her second team accolade, while Milequa Eason and Ivy Eller were both named third team.

All 18 of these athletes also made either the President's or Athletic Director's List at Catawba Valley Community College.

Below is a complete list of the NJCAA All-Academic honorees from Catawba Valley Community College:

All-time NJCAA Academic Team honors at CVCC
2018-19: Women’s basketball (3.00 - Honorable Mention)
2017-18: Volleyball (3.18 - Honorable Mention)
2016-17: Women’s basketball (3.07 - Honorable Mention)
2015-16: Women’s basketball (3.11 - Honorable Mention), Women’s volleyball (3.20 - Honorable mention)

 

2018-19 NJCAA All-Academic Student-Athlete Awards
Austin Blevins, baseball (second team - 3.87)
Madi Bolch, volleyball (first team - 4.0)
R.J. Conner, baseball (second team - 3.8)
Vinny Consolo, baseball (first team - 4.0)
Zach De La Cruz, men’s basketball (third team - 3.66)
Rachel Delcamp, volleyball (third team - 3.76)
Milequa Eason, women’s basketball (third team - 3.78)
Ivy Eller, women’s basketball (third team - 3.66)
Abigail Gordon, volleyball (first team - 4.0)
Willie Gordon, baseball (third team - 3.74)
Sage Harrington, volleyball (first team, 4.0)
Trent Jones, baseball (second team - 3.87)
Storm Mace, baseball (third team - 3.65)
Andrew Patrick, baseball (second team - 3.91)
George Paul, men’s basketball (third team - 3.65)
Macy Pope, volleyball (third team - 3.64)
Deja Ross, women’s basketball (second team - 3.8)
Emilee Webber, volleyball (first team - 4.0)

 

NJCAA All-Academic Student-Athlete Awards by year
2018-19: 18
2017-18: 10
2016-17: 10
2015-16: 8
2014-15: 3
2013-14: 0
2012-13: 3
2011-12: 0
2010-11: 1
2009-10: 0
2008-09: 1

2017-18
Adair Melton, volleyball (second team)
Drew Latham, baseball (second team)
Emilee Webber, volleyball (third team)
Jimmy Marcelli, baseball (third team)
Josh Rice, baseball (second team)
Madisyn Bolin, baseball (second team)
Monique McAbee, women’s basketball (third team)
Nicole Lyerly, women’s basketball (third team)
Trent McKay, baseball (second team)
Willie Gordon, baseball (second team)

2016-17
Chandler Jenkins, baseball (third team)
Charles Hall, baseball (first team)
Courtney Eckmann, volleyball (first team)
Daniel Brinegar, baseball (third team)
David Graves, baseball (third team)
Jimmy Marcelli, baseball (third team)
Jenna Dunsmore, volleyball (first team)
Regan Redmond, volleyball (third team)
Sabrina Pinard, volleyball (first team)
T.J. Goco, baseball (third team)

2015-16
Ada Thompson, volleyball (Pinnacle)
Avery Jackson, men’s basketball (Superior)
Garrett Hollar, baseball (Exemplary)
Katelyn Houser, volleyball (Exemplary)
Makenzie Eller, women’s basketball (Exemplary)
Mason Doub, baseball (Superior)
Matthew Powell, men’s basketball (Superior)
Ty Andrus, baseball (Pinnacle)

2014-15
Anna Henderson, volleyball (Exemplary)
Danny Sullivan, baseball (Exemplary)
Madison Pogue, volleyball ((Exemplary)

2012-13
Aaron Sparks, baseball (Exemplary)
Ryan Karl, baseball (Exemplary)
Victor Moore, men’s basketball (Superior)

2010-11
Dylan Johnson, men’s basketball (Superior)

2008-09
Christina Carrier, volleyball (3.8 - Distinguished)

Wednesday, 03 July 2019 07:19

Hickory Crawdads Shutout at West Virginia

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The West Virginia Power blanked the Hickory Crawdads, 1-0, Tuesday night at Appalachian Power Park.

Hickory was stymied by Power starting pitcher Steven Moyers who pitched 8.1 innings and struck out 10 batters. Hickory was able to get three of their five hits in the contest in the first two innings, but the Crawdads (10-3, 51-28) could not push a run across despite loading the bases in the second.

For the 'Dads, Tyree Thompson (3-4) took the tough luck loss while pitching seven innings, allowing only four hits and one run while striking out four. Hever Bueno pitched the eighth inning, walking one but striking out three.

Melvin Novoa, Tyreque Reed, Sherten Apostel, Jonathan Ornelas and Frainyer Chavez all recorded hits for the Crawdads, all singles.

Hickory drops to 10-3 on the second half of the season. They return home to L.P. Frans Stadium Thursday night to host hte Columbia Fireflies.

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