At the stroke of midnight, the Appalachian State University volleyball team began the 2016 season with its fourth annual “Midnight Battle” intrasquad scrimmage on Friday evening/Saturday morning.
“I thought we looked good for day one with seven-and-a-half new people if you count Ashlyn Brown who joined us in January,” head coach Matt Ginipro said. “Just a bunch of young people playing really, really well. We just have to hone in on our tempo, but if that’s the starting point for us, then preseason is going to be really good.”
“The Midnight Battle is just something fun and something different,” Ginipro continued. “In the first practice, especially when you have so many young kids, just getting them to compete the first time rather than worrying about training, training, training, and then doing it in our first opportunity, doing it at midnight, it’s just something fun to do. It lightens the mood a little bit, especially when you have six freshmen who are probably nervous and are probably scared about some things. They can go, ‘Oh wait, I can just play.’”
The season began by the group of 21 student-athletes and coaches circling up, hand in hand, and talking about the journey that is ahead of each of them. They then bowed their heads and listened to “The Pursuit” speech by Eddie Pinero that echoed through the Holmes Center.
Immediately following, play began with high energy from the first serve. In the first set, the junior outside hitter Tierney Flaherty (Georgetown, Ind./Floyd Central (Wofford)) dropped a furious kill to set the tone for the rest of the night. Other newcomers, Emma Longley (Raleigh, N.C./Cardinal Gibbons), Kennedy Wilson (Avon, Ind./Avon), Amanda Krahl (Pearland, Texas/St. Agnes Academy), Sydney Farthing (Boone, N.C./Watauga), Taylor Ashcraft (Cumming, Ga./West Forsyth) and Mikel Coleman (Farmington Hills, Mich./Harrison) relished in their first collegiate volleyball practice.
Newcomer transfer Ashlyn Brown (Fort Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot (New Mexico State)) also brought a high level of effort in her first time suiting up in the Black and Gold.
Not to be outdone, seniors Olivia Reed (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz), and Kati Stammen (Raleigh, N.C./Leesville Road) led the way by helping with the tempo and constantly communicating, holding the Mountaineers steady on defense while making sure others were in their correct spots for plays on offense. Other returners Alana Shoff (Melbourne, Fla./Melbourne Central Catholic), Olivia Loeffler (Lincolnton, N.C./North Lincoln) and Cassidy Stephenson (Wilmington, N.C./Hoggard) battled hard as middle backs and liberos to elevate the effort even further.
Sophomores Jenna Talbert (Orange City, Fla./University) and Melissa McMath (Lexington, N.C./Central Davidson) both worked the outside well getting several kills on the night, while junior Courtney Sullivan (Commerce Township, Mich./Walled Lake Northern (UNCG)) proved to be valuable guarding the zones and even getting into the attack game.
Seniors Ashton Gregory (Yadkinville, N.C./Starmount (Furman)) and Sloan Evans (San Antonio, Teas/Alamo Heights) were unable to practice due to nagging preseason injuries. Despite being inactive, the two took time between games to meet with and coach their respective positions.
Appalachian has 20 days to prepare for its regular-season opener as the Mountaineers travel to Blacksburg, Va. for a tournament at Virginia Tech beginning on Friday, Aug. 26 against the Hokies. The Apps will also play Norfolk State and Siena over the course of the two-day event. The home opener for the Mountaineers comes on Friday, Sept. 2 as Appalachian hosts UNCW, Wofford and Ohio in the Black and Gold Invitational.
The Hickory Crawdads received a two home run debut from first baseman Xavier Turner Friday night, but the pair of solo shots weren't enough as the 'Dads had their five game win streak snapped in a 6-2 loss to the Lexington Legends at Whitaker Bank Ballpark.
Turner wasted no time enduring himself to his new Crawdads teammates, as the former Vanderbilt standout lined a solo homer in his first at-bat as a 'Dad in the second inning. The 6'1" slugger then went deep again with an even longer solo shot in the ninth for his second blast of the night. The impressive debut couldn't offset a four-run seventh inning by Lexington however, as the Legends used the big frame to break up a one run game and pull away for the 6-2 final score.
Lexington used a long ball of their own to take a quick lead in the first inning, as Brandon Dulin launched a two-run blast to right-center field off of 'Dads starting pitcher Joe Palumbo for a 2-0 score. Hickory responded in the top of the second, when Turner lined solo homer just inside the left field foul pole to cut the deficit to 2-1.
The score remained the same until the home half of the seventh, when Lexington erupted for four runs on three hits and three walks off of Crawdads relievers Omarlin Lopez and Jason Richman to take a 6-2 lead. Xavier Fernandez started the rally when he lined the first pitch of the frame over the fence in left for a solo home run. Two batters later, Ben Johnson delivered an RBI double to left before Dulin eventually capped the inning with a 2-RBI base knock to right to put the Legends up by five runs.
The 'Dads picked up one last tally in the top of the ninth when Turner went deep for a second time, before Lexington reliever Franco Terroro closed out the game with a 6-2 final score.
Palumbo (6-4) took the loss for Hickory after allowing two runs on five hits, one walk, and four strikeouts over five innings pitched. Legends starting pitcher Emilio Oganado (7-9) earned the win with one run allowed on four hits, one walk, and eight strikeouts, while Terrero (1) recorded the save after giving up one run over his three inning on the mound.
Turner paced the 'Dads bats with a 2-4 game including two home runs, while Yeyson Yrizarri also went 2-4 with a double.
The Crawdads (22-18/60-50) and Legends (18-22/43-66) will play again Saturday night at 6:35 pm in game three of their four game series.
Appalachian State Univeristy wrestling head coach JohnMark Bentley announced the addition of Ryan LeBlanc as an assistant coach and Dominic Parisi as a volunteer assistant coach on Friday.
“I am excited about the addition of both Ryan and Dom to the Appalachian wrestling staff,” Bentley said. “Ryan’s wrestling, coaching and fundraising experience will vastly benefit our program. Dominic brings a passion and love for Appalachian that is unparalleled. He had an outstanding career here at Appalachian and he is going to be an awesome Coach!”
LeBlanc joins Appalachian after spending two years working for the State University of New York at Cortland. He started as a graduate assistant wrestling coach before transitioning to a dual position in coaching and alumni engagement. LeBlanc helped guide the team to a 7th and 13th place finish in the NCAA tournament including seven national qualifiers, four NWCA Scholar All-Americans, four NCAA All-Americans and two separate individual national champions. He also helped create the periodization plan for wrestling, strength and cardiovascular training throughout his seasons.
“I am honored to be a Mountaineer,” LeBlanc said. “The Appalachian State University Wrestling program appealed to me as it represents a well-rounded balance of both athletics and academics. I truly believe in Coach JohnMark Bentley’s vision for the program and am excited to work with the kind of student-athletes this program attracts.”
Prior to SUNY-Cortland, LeBlanc amassed a career wrestling record of 103-51 at Indiana University. During his collegiate career, he was a three-time NCAA qualifier and finished in the round of 12 as a senior, a three-time academic all-American, a two-year captain and a Big Ten Academic all-Conference team member for four straight seasons.
LeBlanc was also selected as the Big Ten Medal of Honor recipient, one of the most prestigious conference awards in college athletics. First awarded in 1915, the Medal of Honor is given to one student-athlete from the graduating class of each university who attains “the greatest proficiency in athletics and scholastic work.”
He graduated in 2014 from Indiana with a bachelor’s degree in exercise science before receiving his master’s in sports management in 2016 at SUNY-Cortland.
LeBlanc grew up in Morrisville, N.Y., where he played both tennis and soccer in high school. He joins the Appalachian family with his fiancé Morgan Wesner.
Parisi joins the wrestling coaching staff as a volunteer assistant coach after graduating from Appalachian State in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in recreation management with a concentration in outdoor experiential education before getting his master’s in higher education with a concentration in community college and university leadership at Appalachian as well.
Parisi amassed a collegiate wrestling record of 48-21 as a Mountaineer, winning the 125-pound Southern Conference division his senior year as well as being named to the NWCA All-Academic team. As a junior recovering from a sophomore campaign that was cut short by a knee injury, he placed third at the Hokie Open and Keystone Classic before earning a round of 12 finish at the NCAA’s.
“I am beyond excited and motivated to help coach and give back to a program that has done so much for me during my entire collegiate career as a wrestling student-athlete,” Parisi said.
Parisi grew up in Canastota, N.Y. and Concord, N.C. and attended Jay M. Robinson high school.
A hot-hitting Hickory Crawdads team put together their most dominant offensive performance of the year Thursday night, as the 'Dads scored a season-high 19 runs on a season-best 20 hits in a runaway 19-4 win over the Lexington Legends at Whitaker Bank Ballpark.
Eight of the nine batters in the Crawdads lineup finished the night with a multi-hit game, while five separate players came away with multiple RBIs. Tyler Sanchez led the charge with a 4-5 game including a home run, double, and five RBIs, the most by a Hickory hitter in a contest this season. Eric Jenkins also posted his most impressive offensive performance of the year, finishing 3-5 with a homer, two triples, four RBI, and three runs scored.
The onslaught began with a 7-run second inning, tied for the largest single inning by the 'Dads bats this season. 11 total batters came to the plate in the monster frame, starting with back-to-back singles by Ti'Quan Forbes and Chuck Moorman followed by a one-out RBI base knock from Sherman Lacrus to get the Crawdads on the board. Jenkins followed with the big blast of the inning when he lined a 3-run homer to left-center field for a 4-0 Hickory lead. The rally continued from there with a walk by Josh Altmann, a single from LeDarious Clark, and a 2-RBI double off the bat of Sanchez. Sanchez would come home to score two batters later on an RBI groundout from Forbes to cap off the 7-run eruption.
The Crawdads followed up their breakout second inning with a 6-run outburst in the third to make the score 13-0. Connor McKay and Lacrus started the surge with consecutive singles, before Jenkins flew out to left field fro the first out of the frame. The next five batters would all produce run scoring hits, starting with a 2-RBI double from Altmann, an RBI triple by Clark, an RBI base knock to left from Sanchez, another RBI triple off the bat of Yeyson Yrizarri, and finally an RBI single to left by Forbes.
The relentless Hickory offense kept their foot on the gas with three more runs in the fourth, this time with RBI singles by Sanchez and Yrizarri joining an RBI fielder's choice groundout from Forbes that made the 'Dads lead 16-0. The Legends finally got on the board when Xavier Fernandez pulled a 3-run long ball to left in the fourth to make the score 16-3. Roman Collins then took Crawdads starting pitcher Luke Lanphere deep with a solo shot in the fifth that cut the 'Dads advantage to 16-4.
That would be as close as Lexington would get however, as Hickory plated two more runs on an RBI triple by Jenkins and an RBI groundout from Altmann in the eighth before Sanchez put an exclamation mark on the night with a solo home run in the ninth for the final 19-4 score.
Lanphere (1-0) earned the win while making his Crawdads debut, with four runs allowed on six hits and seven strikeouts over his six innings pitched. Hickory relievers Jacob Shortslef (2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K) and Garrett Brummett (1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 K) finished the game off with three combined shutout frames. Lexington starter Gerson Garabito (2-7) took the loss after giving up seven runs on six hits, three walks, and two strikeouts over 1.1 IP.
The Crawdads (22-17/60-49) have now won five straight games for the second time this season. The 'Dads and Legends (17-22/42-66) will play again Friday night at 7:05 pm, in game two of their four-game series.
The Texas Rangers, major league parent club of the Hickory Crawdads, have announced that 'Dads outfielder Eduard Pinto and infielder Dylan Moore have both been promoted, with Pinto advancing to the Frisco RoughRiders (Class AA) while Moore moves up to the High Desert Mavericks (Class-A Advanced).
Pinto, 21, departs Hickory as the team leader in batting average (.337), on-base percentage (.392), slugging percentage (.478), and OPS (.870). The Venezuela native would have ranked among the South Atlantic League leaders in all of those categories as well, but fell short of the minimum number of at-bats due to missing roughly two months of the season on both the DL and Temporary Inactive List. Pinto was named the SAL Player of the Week on July 10th, after batting .567/.581/.833 with two home runs, 2 doubles, and eight RBI over the seven game stretch. The 5'11" outfielder spent time with the Crawdads in both 2014 and 2015, which included a .364 average in the postseason while helping the 'Dads to the 2015 SAL Championship.
Moore, 24, has been one of the most versatile players in the SAL this season, with the California native getting time in all four infield positions and all three outfield spots in addition to pitching in an emergency relief situation. Moore currently ranks second in the SAL in both walks (54) and stolen bases (37), in addition to leading the 'Dads with nine home runs to go along with a .244 average, 18 doubles, and 45 RBI. A 7th round selection in the 2015 June Draft out of Central Florida, Moore joined the Crawdads for the stretch run in 2015 where he hit .273 with two doubles and three RBI in six playoff games.
Replacing Pinto and Moore on the Crawdads active roster are RHP Luke Lanphere and INF Xavier Turner, both of whom move up from the short-season Spokane Indians.
Pinto and Moore become the fourth and fifth Crawdads to move up in the Rangers system this season, joining INF Andy Ibanez (Frisco), OF Chris Garia (Frisco), and RHP Tyler Davis (High Desert).
Appalachian State University football received its first recognition in national preseason polls on Thursday, receiving four votes in the USA Today Amway Preseason Top 25 Coaches poll in the “also receiving votes” category.
The four points are 18th in the “also receiving votes” poll while ranking 43rd overall in the country. Appalachian is the lone team from the Sun Belt to garner votes in the preseason after being ranked No. 1 overall in the conference by the league’s coaches poll.
The Mountaineers are coming off a stellar polling finish to the 2015 season in which they received seven points in the final Associated Press poll of the year, good for eighth in the “others receiving votes” category (33rd overall) as well as nine points in the final coaches poll, good for ninth in the “others receiving votes” category (34th overall).
Last year’s nine points and No. 34 overall ranking in the Amway Coaches poll were both all-time program bests. This year’s preseason poll is in line with how Appalachian State finished out the season, as they received votes in seven-straight coaches polls to close out 2015 but never tallied more than five points or ranked higher than a tie for 37th overall before the final poll of the year.
Appalachian State was the first Sun Belt Conference team to receive votes in either the coaches or AP season-ending poll since UL Lafayette received one vote in the final AP poll of 2013. The Mountaineers were the first Sun Belt program to receive votes in both polls at the end of the season since Arkansas State in 2012. It was the first time in eight years that Appalachian had received votes for the AP College Football Top 25 poll.
USA Today generally ranked App State highly last season. Appalachian was among only 16 teams to receive an “A” scoring or better in its ranking.
App State finished 11-2 in 2015, with its only losses coming at the hands of national runner-up Clemson and Sun Belt Conference champion Arkansas State. The Mountaineers’ 11 victories set a new Sun Belt single-season record and were the most-ever by a team in its first full-fledged campaign as an FBS member. Appalachian capped the historic season with a 31-29 victory over Ohio in the Raycom Media Camellia Bowl to become the first program to ever win a bowl game in its first full-fledged FBS season (a feat matched by Sun Belt counterpart Georgia Southern four days later).
With 16 starters returning, Appalachian State will look to continue to poll well as it prepares to take on the No. 10 ranked Tennessee on Thursday, Sept. 1 at 7:30 p.m.
The Hickory Crawdads completed their three-game series sweep against the visiting Delmarva Shorebirds in dramatic fashion Wednesday afternoon, as Yeyson Yrizarri clubbed a walk-off, solo home run in the bottom of the ninth to give the 'Dads a 4-3 win.
The Crawdads entered the ninth inning with a 3-2 lead before Shorebirds leftfielder Randolph Gassaway tied the game on a one-out, solo shot to left off of 'Dads reliever Omarlin Lopez. Yrizarri came to his teammate's rescue in the home half of the frame however, as he led off the inning with a line drive that just stayed fair inside the left field foul pole for the walk-off Hickory victory.
Prior to the late heroics, Delmarva jumped out to the initial lead with a run in the first on a single by Ryan Mountcastle and an RBI base knock from Austin Anderson for a 1-0 'Birds advantage. The Crawdads came right back with two tallies of their own in the bottom of the first, as Frandy De La Rosa and LeDarious Clark both singled with one out before Ricky Valencia drove in a run on a ground out and Yrizarri picked up an RBI on a single to center to give Hickory a 2-1 lead.
The 'Dads added to their advantage in the bottom of the third, when Valencia came through again with a two-out, RBI base knock to left that plated Clark for a 3-1 Crawdads advantage. The Shorebirds tightened the score to 3-2 in the fifth, when Gassaway singled, was sacrificed to second, advanced to third on a groundout, and finally scored on a wild pitch by Hickory starting pitcher Emerson Martinez.
The score remained the same until the ninth, as the 'Dads turned the ball over to Lopez to finish off the game. The right-handed reliever got a quick out to start the inning, before Gassaway clubbed the game-tying solo homer to left to deadlock the score at 3-3. Lopez was able to escape the frame without further damage, which set the stage for Yrizarri's game-ending long ball for a 4-3 Crawdads win.
Lopez (7-5) earned the win despite blowing the save, with one run allowed on one hit over his one inning pitched. 'Birds reliever Christian Turnipseed (1-3) took the loss after giving one run on two hits while pitching the eighth and ninth innings.
Martinez was given a no decision with two runs allowed on six hits, one walk, and four strikeouts over six innings pitched in his first start of the season.
Yrizarri finished the game 2-4 with his seventh homer of the season and two RBI, while Valencia went 2-4 with two RBI as well. De La Rosa also had a good day at the dish, going 2-3 with a walk and a run scored.
The Crawdads (21-17/59-49) will now head to Lexington, KY to start a four-game series against the Legends, with first pitch Thursday night scheduled for 7:05 pm.
With the new partnership announced on Wednesday between American Sports Network and the Sun Belt, Appalachian State University Football’s Sept. 10 whiteout against Old Dominion will kickoff at 3:30 p.m. inside Kidd Brewer Stadium on ASN.
The game against ODU will be the first whiteout in school history, as the team unveiled its new white jerseys last week for the contest. Fans are highly encouraged to wear white to “whiteout” the stadium.
In addition, the 2016 Hall of Fame class of Kerry Brown (2004-07), Julian Rauch (2004-07), baseball star Randy Ingram (1975-78), wrestling letterwinner and head coach Paul Mance (student-athlete - 1966-69; head coach - 1976-2009), cheerleader Lori Ransome Harper (1985-89) and longtime “Voice of the Mountaineers” David Jackson will be on hand for the 42nd Hall of Fame induction.
While games on ASN will be broadcasts on “over-the- air” and cable affiliates, they will also be available without blackout restrictions on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN app.The partnership, made possible through a sublicense agreement with ESPN, allows for a minimum of eight football games and a minimum of 10 basketball games from the Sun Belt to be aired through ASN.
About the American Sports Network
American Sports Network is a sports programming division of Sinclair Networks Group, LLC, a division of Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc. ASN produces broadcasts of sporting events, including NCAA Division I multiple sports, NCAA Division II football, local high school sports under the “Thursday Night Lights” and“Friday Night Rivals” brands, Major League Soccer’s Real Salt Lake City and D.C. United franchises, and the college football Arizona Bowl. The company, which launched in 2014, produced more than 375 events last year and is now a dedicated 24/7 broadcast network in 22 markets. For more information, visit ASN’s website at www.americansportsnet.com.
The Hickory Crawdads found themselves in a virtual home run derby Tuesday night against the visiting Delmarva Shorebirds, as the 'Dads slammed three homers only to see the 'Birds launch four balls over the wall. Hickory emerged with the better overall offense on the night however, as the Crawdads defeated the 'Birds 9-6 at L.P. Frans Stadium.
The 'Dads set a new season-high with all three of their homers coming in just one inning, while the seven total big flies between the two teams also marked a new season-high for a Hickory game. The home run barrage was at the forefront of a nine run, 12 hit performance by the Hickory hitters, who have now scored a combined 23 runs while winning the past three games.
The Shorebirds kicked off the big fly parade with a solo shot from Ryan Mountcastle in the first inning, followed by a 2-run blast by Ademar Rifaela in the second to take a 3-0 lead.
The Crawdads responded in a big way, with a five-run third inning containing all three of the Hickory homers. The rally started with a two-out single by Frandy De La Rosa, before LeDarious Clark lined a 2-run long ball to right-center field to get the 'Dads on the board. Following a walk by Tyler Sanchez, Yeyson Yrizarri also went yard with a 2-run bomb to left. Ti'Quan Forbes then capped off the big inning with a solo shot to left for a 5-3 Crawdads advantage.
The 'Dads lead grew to 7-3 with two more runs in the fourth. Ninth place batter Sherman Lacrus kicked the surge off with a base knock to right. Eric Jenkins followed with a walk, before De La Rosa delivered an RBI single to center. Clark then drove in the second run on an RBI, fielder's choice groundout to put Hickory ahead by four.
Delmarva got back in the ballgame in the fifth, once again with the long ball leading the way, as Cedric Mullins lined a solo homer to left before Austin Anderson crushed a 2-run blast to right that cut the Crawdads lead down to 7-6. The 'Dads were able to stretch the advantage back out with a pair of runs in the sixth, as both Clark and Yrizarri collected RBI singles to give Hickory the 9-6 lead they would go on to win by.
Clark finished with a home run for the second straight night while going 2-5 with a season-high four RBI, two runs scored, and a stolen base. Yrizarri went 2-4 with a homer, three RBI, and a run scored, while Forbes ended the game 2-4 with a home run, double, RBI, and a run scored.
'Dads starting pitcher Wes Benjamin (5-4) was the benefactor of all the offense, as the lefthander earned the win after allowing six runs on nine hits, one walk, and eight strikeouts. Reliever John Werner tossed a scoreless frame in the sixth, while Jason Richman (2) picked up the save with three shutout frames to end the game. Delmarva starter Jhon Peluffo (0-1) took the loss while making his South Atlantic League debut, after giving up seven runs on seven hits and three walks over 3.2 IP.
The Crawdads (20-17/58-49) have now won three straight games, and will go for the three-game series sweep over the Shorebirds (16-22/58-49) Wednesday afternoon at 12:00 pm.
Six members of the Lenoir-Rhyne University Football Team earned 2016 All-South Atlantic Conference Preseason accolades, league officials announced this morning.
Three Bears – junior offensive lineman Jaleel Roberts (Charlotte, N.C.), sophomore defensive back Kyle Dugger (Fayetteville, Ga.) and junior punter Michael DeStephens (Gainesville, Fla.) – were named to the All-SAC Preseason First Team.
Roberts was part of a unit which helped pave the way for the Bears to lead NCAA Division II in rushing offense last year at 384.7 yards per outing.
Dugger was the 2015 South Atlantic Conference Defensive Freshman Of The Year after putting together a season which included 43 tackles, a team-high four interceptions, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and two blocked kicks. Dugger also scored three touchdowns: one on a blocked punt, one on a blocked field and one on a fumble return.
DeStephens led the league in punting average (43.3 yards per punt) last year which also ranked fourth-best in the nation. DeStephens has earned all-conference accolades in both 2014 and 2015.
Senior defensive lineman Chris Green (Albany, Ga.), senior linebacker Jordan Forney (Belmont, N.C.) and senior defensive back Marcus Kincaid (Morganton, N.C.) were all named to the preseason all-league second team for the Bears.
Green was a 2014 All-SAC selection and looks to return to form two years ago after injury sidelined him for part of the season last year. Green still totaled 29 tackles and a quarterback sack last fall.
Forney led the squad in tackles last year (80) with 2.5 sacks and a fumble recovery and was named to the 2015 All-South Atlantic Conference Second Team while Kincaid was third on the team in takedowns with 72 to go along with two interceptions in 2015. Kincaid, like Green, was an all-conference selection two years ago.
Lenoir-Rhyne opens the 2016 season on Saturday, September 3, at 2:00 p.m., at Moretz Stadium against Virginia State. Lenoir-Rhyne will also have “Meet The Bears” Day on Monday, August 22, at 7:00 p.m., as part of a scrimmage.
2016 All-South Atlantic Conference
Football Preseason Teams
FIRST TEAM OFFENSE
Quarterback – Raleigh Yeldell, Newberry
Running Back – Isaac Robinson, Tusculum
Running Back – Romelo Doctor, Newberry
Running Back – Lawrence Pittman, Wingate
Wide Receiver – Keshaun Taylor, Mars Hill
Wide Receiver – Gilbert Johnson, Mars Hill
Wide Receiver – Jordan Berry, Wingate
Tight End – Jake Jenson, Wingate
Offensive Line – Austin Lewis, Carson-Newman
Offensive Line – Dan Gallman, Carson-Newman
Offensive Line – Joe Hillin, Mars Hill
Offensive Line – Jaleel Roberts, Lenoir-Rhyne
Offensive Line – Bryce King, Mars Hill
Return Specialist – Lonnie Williams, Carson-Newman
Long Snapper – Ian O’Grady, Tusculum
Placekicker – Will Tommie, Tusculum
FIRST TEAM DEFENSE
Defensive Line – C.J. Barksdale, Catawba
Defensive Line – Phalen Booker, Carson-Newman
Defensive Line – Andre Foulks, Wingate
Defensive Line – Brian Bembry, Carson-Newman
Linebacker – Kyle Kitchens, Catawba
Linebacker – Brandyn Bartlett, Tusculum
Linebacker – Jamal Lacky, Catawba
Linebacker – Sha’heem Stupart, Carson-Newman
Defensive Back – Case Woodard, Catawba
Defensive Back – Kyle Dugger, Lenoir-Rhyne
Defensive Back – Cameron Thomas, Tusculum
Defensive Back – Jerry Miclisse, Carson-Newman
Punter – Michael DeStephens, Lenoir-Rhyne
SECOND TEAM OFFENSE
Quarterback – Mike Sheehan, Catawba
Running Back – Antonio Wimbush, Carson-Newman
Running Back – Montavious Taylor, Carson-Newman
Running Back – David Burgees, Catawba
Wide Receiver – Cole Watson, Newberry
Wide Receiver – Keyon West, Catawba
Wide Receiver - Evan Altizer, Tusculum
Tight End – Grant Janeway, Carson-Newman
Offensive Line – Daniel Owens, Wingate
Offensive Line – Bobby McNeil, Newberry
Offensive Line – Tyler Stasky, Newberry
Offensive Line – Branden Dagley, Brevard
Offensive Line – Patrick Benson, Tusculum
Return Specialist – Cole Watson, Newberry
Long Snapper – Steven Bartlett, Catawba
Placekicker – Carson Wise, Carson-Newman
SECOND TEAM DEFENSE
Defensive Line – Jamarcus Henderson, Newberry
Defensive Line – Ray Edwards, Wingate
Defensive Line – Josh Parker, Newberry
Defensive Line – Chris Green, Lenoir-Rhyne
Linebacker – L'Keith Brown, Tusculum
Linebacker – Jamal Lackey, Catawba
Linebacker – Jordan Forney, Lenoir-Rhyne
Linebacker – Carl Mattox, Mars Hill
Defensive Back – Chris Carpenter, Catawba
Defensive Back – Marcus Kincaid, Lenoir-Rhyne
Defensive Back – Jason Williams, Carson-Newman
Defensive Back – Kameron Johnson, Wingate
Punter – Kevin Weber, Brevard
With kickoff in Knoxville against the Tennessee Volunteers and the beginning of the 2016 Appalachian State University football season less than a month away, the Appalachian Alumni Association invites you to enjoy pre-game festivities at the University of Tennessee on September 1.
The Alumni Association will do all of the tailgate. They have a prime on-campus tailgate spot at Tennessee Park, which is located in the McClung Plaza and just several blocks from Neyland Stadium. The Mountaineers and Volunteers will battle before a nationally televised audience on the SEC Network with kickoff at 7:30 p.m.
TAILGATE EVENT HIGHLIGHTS
• The tailgate is from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on campus at Tennessee Park, which is located in the McClung Plaza and just several blocks from Neyland Stadium.
• The menu includes smoke BBQ and BBQ roasted chicken, baked beans, cole slaw, potato salad, cream corn, cookies and brownies and beverages, including tea, lemonade, water, and two beer and wine tickets.
• The price is $30 for adults and $20 for children (4-12) and FREE for children under the age of three.
• Event guests will also have the option to purchase a limited inventory of on-campus parking passes while supplies last. The price is $45 and the pass will be mailed to you the week before the game. Please note that we do not control the parking lot assignment, however, all locations being offered are on campus and convenient to game day activities.
• A valid photo ID is required to be served alcohol.
• Outside food and drink are not permitted as the tailgate.
• For tailgate package offered above, guests must pre-register for the tailgate by August 18, by visiting alumni.appstate.edu or by calling the Office of Alumni Affairs and Annual Giving at (866) 756-2586.
• A limited number of on-site tailgate tickets may be available for purchase on September 1. If available, the tickets will be $45 for adults and $35 for children, however, we encourage you to register in advance to take advantage of the discounted tailgate ticket price and guarantee your admission to the event.
• Game tickets can be purchased from the athletics ticket office by visiting appstatesports.com/tickets, visiting the ticket office, which is located inside the Holmes Center or by calling (828) 262-2079.
The Hickory Crawdads jumped out to a big early lead against the visiting Delmarva Shorebirds Monday night and rode it to a series opening win, as the 'Dads used six runs over the first two innings to back a shutout performance from the pitching staff in a 7-0 win at L.P. Frans Stadium.
The Crawdads lineup sent 16 men to the plate while scoring six runs on six hits over the first two innings against Shorebirds starting pitcher Ofelky Peralta. That early surge would be more than enough support for Christian Torres, Adam Choplick, and Blake Bass, who combined to throw the 'Dads eighth shutout of the season after holding Delmarva off the board on seven hits. The victory also marks the fourth straight win for Hickory over their Northern Division rival, with three of those wins being shutouts.
The first inning explosion saw the Crawdads plate four runs on four hits to take a quick 4-0 lead. Eric Jenkins started the frame with a single and a stolen base, before Eduard Pinto followed one out later with a 2-run home run to right to get the 'Dads on the board. One batter later, Tyler Sanchez drew a walk and came home on an RBI double from Yeyson Yrizarri before LeDarious Clark looped an RBI single to center to cap the inning.
Hickory stretched the advantage to 6-0 in the second, with a single and stolen base from Connor McKay and an RBI base knock by Frandy De La Rosa plating the first tally. Both Pinto and Sanchez followed with walks to load the bases for Yrizarri, who drove in a run on a hit-by-pitch to put the Crawdads up by half a dozen.
The 'Dads picked up their last run of the night in the fifth, when Clark lined a solo home run just above the fence in the right field corner for a 7-0 Hickory lead. The 'Dads pitching staff rolled from there, with Delmarva getting only one baserunner over the final four frames of the Crawdads win.
Torres (1-1) earned the win for the 'Dads with five scoreless innings on six hits and six strikeouts. Choplick followed with three perfect innings of relief, while Bass put up a shutout ninth to finish the game. Peralta (6-5) took the loss for Delmarva after allowing six runs on six hits, three walks, and four strikeouts over two innings pitched.
Pinto led the Hickory hitters with a 2-3 game including his fifth homer of the year, two RBI, and a walk. Clark also had a multi-hit night going 2-4 with a long ball and two RBI, while Yrizarri finished 1-3 with a double, two RBI, and a hit-by-pitch.
The Crawdads (19-17/57-49) and Shorebirds (16-21/58-48) will play again on Tuesday at 7:00 pm in game two of the three game series.
The Lenoir-Rhyne University Football Team was voted on to finish sixth in the 2016 South Atlantic Conference Preseason Coaches Poll, league officials announced today.
Catawba edged Carson-Newman by a 45-43 total in points and is favored to repeat as league champions. Both the Indians (9-3, 6-1) and the Eagles (9-3, 5-2) received three first-place votes and both squads are coming off berths in the NCAA Division II Playoffs in 2015.
Lenoir-Rhyne (5-5, 3-4), which won the South Atlantic Conference Championship for four straight years from 2011 to 2014, looks to bounce back this season under first-year Head Coach Mike Kellar.
The Bears return 16 starters from the offense, defense and special teams from a squad which led the nation in rushing for the third consecutive season last fall at 384.7 yards per game.
Lenoir-Rhyne opens the 2016 campaign at home on Saturday, September 3, at 2:00 p.m., against Virginia State at Moretz Stadium. The Bears will play their first four contests at home after opening on the road four straight times last year.
2016 South Atlantic Conference Football Preseason Poll
1. Catawba (3) 45
2. Carson-Newman (3) 43
3. Newberry (2) 36
4. Mars Hill 30
5. Wingate 27
6. Lenoir-Rhyne 22
7. Tusculum 14
8. Brevard 7
The Texas Rangers, MLB parent club of the Hickory Crawdads, have announced that the club has acquired outfielder Carlos Beltran and cash considerations in a trade with the New York Yankees in exchange for Hickory Crawdads right-handed pitchers Dillon Tate and Erik Swanson, as well as Spokane Indians hurler Nick Green.
Tate, 22, is 3-3 with a 5.12 ERA (37 ER/65 IP) over 18 appearances with the Crawdads this season. The 4th overall selection in the 2015 June Draft by the Rangers out of UC Santa Barbara, Tate was also a member of the 2015 South Atlantic League Champion Crawdads where he allowed just one run over seven innings pitched in the regular season before starring for the 'Dads in the postseason. Tate was rated as the #6 prospect in the Rangers system by MLB.com.
Swanson, 22, posted a 6-4 record along with a 3.43 ERA (31 ER/81.1 IP) with Hickory this season. An 8th round selection by the Rangers in the 2014 June Draft out of Iowa Western Community College, Swanson was named a Mid-Season SAL All-Star for the Crawdads this season after posting a 2.85 ERA (17 ER/53.2 IP), a 52/14 K/BB ratio, and a .220 BAA in the first half of the season. Swanson played for the 'Dads in 2015 as well, going 1-0 with a 2.19 ERA (3 ER/12.1 IP) over seven relief outings before helping the Crawdads to the SAL Championship.
Beltran, 39, has batted .304 with 22 home runs, 22 doubles, and 64 RBI in 99 games with the Yankees this season, his third year with New York-AL. The 2016 All-Star ranks among American League leaders in batting average (9th), slugging percentage (4th, .546), at-bats per home run (9th, 16.3) and at-bats per RBI (10th, 5.6). Since the beginning of June, the switch-hitter has compiled a .343/.389/.562/.950 slash line with 10 home runs and 33 RBI in 49 games, ranking among the A.L.'s top 10 in each of the four percentage categories in that span. He has seen action in right field (58 games) and as designated hitter (34 games) with the Yankees, and is also 1-for-7 with a walk as a pinch-hitter.
Beltran has already reached his 12th career season with 20-or-more home runs, tied for 4th-most among active players. His 414 career home runs rank 6th among active players and are 4th-most all-time by a switch-hitter, trailing Mickey Mantle (536), Eddie Murray (504), and Chipper Jones (468). He was selected as an All-Star for a 9th time in 2016, and has won a Rawlings Gold Glove Award on 3 occasions and was twice on the Louisville Slugger Silver Slugger Team. He was the American League Rookie of the Year in 1999 with Kansas City. He is one of 5 players in major league history with at least 7 different seasons of 20+ home runs and 20+ stolen bases.
Over 52 career postseason games, Beltran has batted .332 (61-184) with 16 home runs and 40 RBI. He ranks 9th in major league history in postseason home runs and his 45 runs in the playoff are 11th all-time. He has played 42 games at Globe Life Park in Arlington, batting .300 (51-170) with 9 home runs, 40 RBI, and a .902 OPS figure. With the addition of Beltran, the Rangers now have 2 of the top 6 on the active home run list (Adrian Beltre is 5th with 429 HR).