Sports (819)

The Lenoir-Rhyne University Men’s Soccer Team (11-4-3) received a bid to the 2016 NCAA Division II Southeast Regional Tournament and will face league-rival Tusculum (16-3) in the First Round Thursday at 7:00 p.m., in Misenheimer, N.C.

The match will take place at N.E. Lefko Field on the campus of Pfeiffer University. The Bears are the sixth seed in the tournament while the Pioneers are seeded third. The winner will face second-seeded Pfeiffer on Saturday at 7:00 p.m., in the second round.

Lenoir-Rhyne fell to Tusculum on Saturday, September 17, by a 2-1 score in a South Atlantic Conference match in Greeneville, Tenn. Nationally, Pfeiffer is ranked ninth and is the defending national champions.

Lenoir-Rhyne, who is making its first berth to the postseason since 2006, is led this year by junior forward Ismael Noumansana (Reims, FRANCE). Noumansana was named the SAC Player Of The Year and is currently tied for first in the league in goals scored (16) and total points (33).

The other half of the regional tournament takes place in Wingate, N.C., and will feature top-seeded Wingate (14-1), fourth-seeded Limestone (15-3) and fifth-seeded Lander (14-3-1).

The top remaining team from the Southeast Region will host playoff matches next weekend: the third round (Friday, November 18) and the national quarterfinals (Sunday, November 20).

The NCAA Division II Men’s Soccer Final Four takes place on Thursday, December 1 (national semifinals) and Saturday, December 3 (national championship at 1:00 p.m.) at the Children's Mercy Victory Field at Swope Soccer Village in Kansas City, Missouri.

2016 NCAA Division II Southeast Regional
Men’s Soccer Tournament
November 10 & 12, 2016 – Misenheimer, N.C.
Pfeiffer University, host

Thursday, November 10
No. 3 Tusculum (16-3) vs. No. 6 Lenoir-Rhyne (11-4-3), 7 p.m.

Saturday, November 12
Tusculum/Lenoir-Rhyne winner at No. 2 Pfeiffer (18-2), 7 p.m.

November 11 & 13, 2016 – Wingate, N.C.
Wingate University, host

Friday, November 11
No. 4 Limestone (15-3) vs. No. 5 Lander (14-3-1), 7 p.m.

Sunday, November 13
Limestone/Lander winner at No. 1 Wingate (14-1), 1 p.m.

The Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Soccer Team (13-4-2) earned a berth in the 2016 NCAA Division II Southeast Regional Tournament and will face Armstrong State (13-4-2) in the opening round on Friday at 1:00 p.m., at the Walden Soccer Complex in Columbus, Ga. Columbus State University will serve as the host institution.

The Bears are the fifth seed in the tournament while the Pirates are seeded fourth. The winner will take on the top-seeded Cougars (18-2) in the second round on Sunday at 1:00 p.m.

Lenoir-Rhyne is coming off its sixth South Atlantic Conference Regular Season Championship in seven years this fall and will also be making its sixth berth to the national postseason tournament. Columbus State is ranked No. 5 in the nation and is the 2016 Peach Belt Conference Regular Season and Tournament Champions.

Lenoir-Rhyne is led this season by senior forward Kendall Smith (Asheville, N.C.), who ranks first on the team in goals scored (eight), assists (seven) and total points (23). Meanwhile, midfielder Abigael McGarel (Morristown, Tenn.) was named the SAC Women’s Soccer Freshman Of The Year.

The other half of the Southeast Regional Tournament takes place in Dahlonega, Ga., and includes second-seeded and host North Georgia (14-2-3), third-seeded Limestone (18-1) and sixth-seeded Carson-Newman (16-3-1). Limestone (No. 14) and North Georgia (No. 17) are also ranked nationally.

The two winners of each region will advance to the third round (regional championship) to be played on Friday, November 18. The national quarterfinal match-up will be on Sunday, November 20, against the champion from the South Regional.

Both the third and quarterfinal rounds will be hosted by the highest remaining seed from the South Region. The national semifinals and championships will be played on Thursday, December 1, and Saturday, December 3, respectively, at Children’s Mercy Victory Field at Swope Soccer Village in Kansas City, Missouri, at 4:00 p.m.

2016 NCAA Division II Southeast Regional
Women’s Soccer Tournament
November 11 & 13, 2016 – Columbus, Ga.
Columbus State University, host

Friday, November 11
No. 4 Armstrong State (13-4-2) vs. No. 5 Lenoir-Rhyne (13-4-2), 1 p.m.

Sunday, November 13
Armstrong State/Lenoir-Rhyne winner at No. 1 Columbus State (18-2), 1 p.m.

November 11 & 13, 2016 – Dahlonega, Ga.
North Georgia, host

Friday, November 11
No. 3 Limestone (18-1) vs. No. 6 Carson-Newman (16-3-1), 2 p.m.

Sunday, November 13
Limestone/Carson-Newman winner at No. 2 North Georgia (14-2-3), 1 p.m.

Tuesday, 08 November 2016 07:38

Appalachian State Softball Announces 2017 Schedule

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Appalachian State University head softball coach Janice Savage announced the softball program’s spring schedule on Monday afternoon. The 2017 softball squad will play 56 games in the regular season.

“I am really looking forward to seeing the growth our program has made over the past year,” said head coach Savage. “These ladies have worked really hard this fall, not only in the classroom but on building the culture of App State Softball. I am excited to see the hard work they will continue over Christmas break and bring back for the spring season.”

“We have an exciting spring schedule ahead of us, and I feel it will help prepare us for conference play,” continued Savage. “I am really looking forward to our continued growth as softball players, people and as a program.”

Appalachian will partake in 19 home games at the Sywassink/Loyd Family Stadium, which begins on March 11-12 when the women take on their first conference foe UL Lafayette for three straight matches. App State’s final home game weekend will fall on April 29-30 to face off against UT Arlington for a trio of ball games.

“We look forward to hosting ULL at home this year,” said Savage. “Our girls are excited for the first home conference series and for our fans to see their growth from the beginning of the season to that point. It is always a great experience to bring in a top ten team in the country to Boone and play them three times.”

Before conference play, the Black and Gold will appear in four tournaments and will open up the season at the Jacksonville River City Leadoff Tournament in Jacksonville, Fla. (Feb. 10-12). A week later, the ladies will roll down to Greensboro, N.C. to take on UMBC, Howard and Valparaiso University at the Aggie Invitational from Feb. 18-19. App State will also play in the UNCW Softball Invitational on Feb. 24-26 and the Fairfield Inn and Suites Camel Stampede on Mar. 3-4.

“Opening up with these tournaments allows us to get in good games and test us early,” said Savage. “ We have a lot of youth that will gain some experience for us in these first few weekends before we begin conference play at home versus ULL.”

For non-conference matchups, the Apps’ will compete in seven doubleheaders starting with a twinbill against NC A&T on Feb. 15. After the Aggies, the Mountaineers will participate in back-to-back games against Presbyterian College (Mar. 14), UNCG (Mar. 22), USC Upstate (Mar. 29), Western Carolina (Apr. 5), NCCU (Apr. 19) and UNC Charlotte (Apr. 26).

When it comes to Sun Belt Conference play, the Mountaineers will host ULL on Mar. 11-12, South Alabama on Apr. 1-2, Georgia Southern on Apr. 14-15 and UTA on Apr. 29-30. On the road, Appalachian will trek down to Texas State (Mar. 18-19), Georgia State (Mar. 25-26), UL Monroe (Apr. 8-9), Troy (Apr. 22-23) and conclude conference play and the 2017 season at Coastal Carolina (May 5-6).

Appalachian State senior linebacker Kennan Gilchrist (Abbeville, S.C.) has been named the Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Week.


Gilchrist had two sacks and 3.5 tackles for loss in App State’s 35-10 win over Texas State on Saturday. The senior had a team-high eight tackles and, after Texas State took a brief 3-0 lead, was a big part of the Mountaineers forcing six Bobcat punts and an interception on their next seven drives.


The Apps finished with 13 tackles for loss and four sacks in the win, holding Texas State to only 197 yards of total offense.


Gilchrist is sixth in the Sun Belt in conference play in sacks with three and second in tackles for loss with 11. He is second on the team with 65 stops this season.


App State leads the Sun Belt in scoring defense allowing 8.4 points per game and has held back-to-back opponents under 200 yards of total offense.


App travels to Troy, Ala. to face Troy (7-1, 4-0 Sun Belt) in a battle of conference unbeaten on Saturday. Kickoff is at 3:30 p.m. on ESPN3. App won a 44-41 thriller in three overtimes last season at The Rock.

Forbush: 2
Draughn: 1
Wildcats season at 8-14.


Forest Hills: 1
Bunker Hill: 0
Bears season ends at 10-8-4.


Lake Norman Charter: 9
Maiden: 2
Blue Devils season ends at 8-14-2.


Newton-Conover: 4
East Lincoln: 1
Red Devils host West Caldwell Tuesday.


West Caldwell: 4
North Surry: 0
Warriors go to West Caldwell on Tuesday.


Cuthbertson: 2
Hickory: 0
Red Tornadoes season ends at 16-6-1.


Hibriten: 2
Forestview: 0
Panthers advance to the second round going to South Point on Tuesday.


Marvin Ridge: 1
Fred T. Foard: 0
Tigers season ends at 10-12.


Patton: 6
East Gaston: 2
Panthers advance to the second round hosting Weddington.


South Point: 2
St. Stephens: 1
Indians season ends at 9-11-3.


Page: 9
Alexander Central: 0
Cougars season ends at 9-12-2.

Sunday, 06 November 2016 23:21

App State Volleyball Loses Again in Five Sets

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Appalachian State University volleyball could not make it back-to-back wins over Georgia Southern and fell in a hard-fought five-set thriller 3-2 (25-22, 22-25, 17-25, 25-22, 11-15) on Sunday afternoon inside the Holmes Center.


The Mountaineers (4-23, 2-12 Sun Belt) were led by senior middle blocker Ashton Gregory (Yadkinville, N.C./Starmount/Furman) who finished with 16 kills. Melissa McMath (Lexington, N.C./Central Davidson) finished with 12.


Ashlyn Brown (Fort Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot/New Mexico State) led the team again with 38 assists on the afternoon. Defensively, Kati Stammen (Raleigh, N.C./Leesville Road) tallied a team-high and career-high 21 digs, while Emma Longley (Raleigh, N.C./Cardinal Gibbons) finished with 15.


Appalachian seemingly picked up where the left off from Saturday night and midway through the opening set used an 11-3 run to open up a 21-13 lead.


The run was keyed by a McMath kill and capped by an Eagle attack error that forced the Eagles (13-17, 5-9 Sun Belt) into their second timeout of the set.

Georgia Southern would battle back to within two points at 24-22, but a kill from McMath would seal a first set win for the Mountaineers.


The Eagles’ success in the second set mirrored the Mountaineers’ success in the first. With a 9-9 tie, the Eagles used an 8-3 run to build a 17-12 advantage - forcing Appalachian into a timeout. The Mountaineers would close to within just one point on two occasions - the last coming at 23-22. A kill from Katie Bange and an error from App State would give the Eagles a 25-22 set win.


Georgia Southern built off its momentum from the second set and raced out to an 18-7 lead over the Mountaineers. App State closed to within as many as six, but could not overcome the deficit and dropped set three 25-17.


Needing to force a fifth set, the Mountaineers needed a win in the fourth. Both App State and Southern battled back and forth in the early going and found themselves tied 8-8. A kill from Longley, coupled with an Eagle error opened a 10-8 lead for the Black and Gold.


Appalachian maintained its lead until the Eagles took a 17-16 lead. A 4-0 run put the Apps up 20-7 and the Mountaineers would not relinquish the advantage and a 25-22 set win would force a decisive fifth set.


Even with momentum entering the fifth set, the Eagles were the ones to jump on the Mountaineers early with a 6-2 lead. It would be a lead the Apps could not overcome even coming to within just there points at 12-9. Georgia Southern finished the fifth set with a 15-11 win to clinch the match.


Appalachian State returns to the court on Friday, November 11 when they face South Alabama at home. First serve is slated for 6:30 p.m. inside the Holmes Center.

Sunday, 06 November 2016 22:45

App's Cline Earns All-Tournament Team Honors

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Appalachian State University women’s soccer forward Jane Cline (Cornelius, N.C./Charlotte Catholic) earned all-Sun Belt Tournament team recognition on Sunday afternoon, the Sun Belt office announced after South Alabama’s 2-0 win over Coastal Carolina in the tournament final.


“I’m happy for Jane to receive this recognition,” said head coach Sarah Strickland. “She has forever left her mark on App State women’s soccer as a leader in our program.”


Cline, a member of the all-Sun Belt first team and the Offensive Player of the Year, earned all-tournament honors as she helped the Mountaineers reach the tournament and, scoring four goals in the three final must-win games and for her performance in the quarterfinal and semifinal matchups.


The Cornelius, N.C. native’s senior year was remarkable as she finished the regular season with 11 goals, three assists, 25 points, 91 shots (54 on goal) and five game-winning goals while logging 1,589 minutes.


Cline’s season put her tied for first all-time in Appalachian’s history for single season goals, while she also set a new program high for shots in a season. She’s now second in program history for points in a season and tied for second all-time in career assists (14).


Jane Cline, Appalachian State
Doro Greulich, Little Rock
Amber Adams, Coastal Carolina
Kayla Christian, Coastal Carolina
Sam Patterson, Coastal Carolina
Ellie Taylor, Coastal Carolina
Chardé Hannah, South Alabama
Ashlynn Jones, South Alabama
Jana Loeber, South Alabama
Jemma Purfield, South Alabama
Justice Stanford, South Alabama

Most Outstanding Performer
Jemma Purfield, South Alabama

Appalachian State University men’s soccer was unable to get the win in the regular-season finale at Georgia Southern, falling 3-1 to the Eagles on Saturday evening.


The Mountaineers (5-8-4) fell behind by two goals in the first half, and despite battling back to earn a goal late, couldn’t overcome the Eagles (8-7-3) tough defense.


“Congratulations to Georgia Southern, they are a well-coached team,” head coach Jason O’Keefe said. “Their team competed for the entire game and executed the game plan. We need to learn from this, recover and get back to work so we can be ready to go on Thursday in the Sun Belt tournament.”

O’Keefe continued, “I am excited to see what we can do in the tournament. The league is very competitive and we will embrace this last opportunity we have to extend our season moving forward. There is no better time of the year.”


The Black and Gold’s lone goal came when a ball bounced loose into the box and senior Keegan Tanaka (Austin, Texas/James Bowie) was able to drive it home for his second career goal in the 69th minute of the game.


Georgia Southern was able to score off unlucky bounces in the box in the 30th and 33rd minutes and off a well-placed cross in the 59th minute.


Leading the Mountaineers offensively was sophomore Ian Bennett (Wilmington, N.C./New Hanover) and Tanaka, who each had two shots total, with Tanaka’s second coming for the goal. Sophomore Daniel Avila (Smithfield, N.C./Smithfield-Selma) had one shot on goal while freshman Graham Smalley (Kill Devil Hills, N.C./First Flight) had one shot total on the night.


Freshman Jake Agnew (Farmington, Minn./IMG Academy) played the first 70-plus minute of the game, recording three saves, before senior Jaron Bradley (Davidson, N.C./Hough (UNC Asheville)) entered the game to play the final 19. There was also one team save on the night.


The Mountaineers will now await the final seeding of the 2016 Sun Belt Championship tournament to see who they will face off with in the first round on Thursday, Nov. 10.

Sunday, 06 November 2016 22:27

App State Volleyball Sweeps Georgia Southern

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In dominating fashion, Appalachian State University volleyball eradicated Georgia Southern on Saturday night in a straight-set sweep (26-24, 25-20, 25-19).


The Mountaineers (4-22, 2-11 Sun Belt) were led by Melissa McMath (Lexington, N.C./Central Davidson) who registered 13 kills, while Ashton Gregory (Yadkinville, N.C./Starmount/Furman) tallied 12.


Ashlyn Brown (Fort Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot/New Mexico State) drove the Mountaineers’ bus on offense and collected 33 assists. Defensively, Brown completed the double-double with a team-high 13 digs, while Kati Stammen (Raleigh, N.C./Leesville Road) notched 10.


Both the Mountaineers and Eagles (12-17, 4-9 Sun Belt) traded leads in the early going in the opening set. Up 16-15, the Apps went on a 5-0 run keyed by a Gregory kill and capped by a kill from McMath for a 21-16 advantage.


However, the Eagles would battle back to a 22-22 tie and eventually take a 23-22 lead forcing an Appalachian timeout. Back-to-back kills from Mikel Coleman (Farmington Hills, Mich./Harrison) and Sloan Evans (San Antonio, Texas/Alamo Heights) put the Black and Gold up 24-23.


Georgia Southern tied it again at 24-24, but consecutive kills from Coleman and Gregory ended the set in the Mountaineers’ favor, 26-24.


With momentum on their side, the Mountaineers weren’t the ones to come out strong early in the second set. The Eagles opened the set on a 6-2 run, which was erased with a 5-0 run from App State to give the Mountaineers a 7-6 lead.


The Eagles would regain the lead and push it to as many as four on two occasions - the last a 17-13 Eagle lead. The Apps closed to within one after a Gregory kill at 18-17. Gregory then served five-straight points and App State took a 22-18 lead and were able to fend off the Eagles and grab a 2-0 lead in the match with a 25-20 set win.


Appalachian used a 6-2 run with the score knotted at 10-10 to take a 16-12 lead over midway through the third set. The Eagles closed to within one at 17-16, but App State was able to push its lead to four at 20-16 following two Eagle errors and a kill from Cassidy Stephenson (Wilmington, N.C./Hoggard).

Up just two points at 20-18, the Mountaineers closed on a 5-1 run, which included kills from Evans and Gregory to complete the sweep.


Appalachian State returns to the court on Sunday, Nov. 6 when it faces Georgia Southern for the second match of a back-to-back. First serve is set for 4 p.m. from inside the Holmes Center.

Both the Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s and Women’s Swimming Teams finished second at the Wingate Quad Meet which concluded Saturday at the Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center.


On the women’s side, ninth-ranked Wingate finished with 750 points and was followed by Lenoir-Rhyne (381), Catawba (250) and Limestone (223).
In the men’s competition, No. 13 Wingate (613) placed first while the Bears (406) were runner-up and Catawba (379) and Limestone (285) were third and fourth, respectively.


Lenoir-Rhyne junior Noah McRea (Hickory, N.C.) placed first in the men’s 400-yard individual medley with a time of 4:06.25 while freshman Jacob Queen (Hickory, N.C.) was fifth in the 200-yard freestyle (1:46.38).


Another fifth-place finish for the Bears came from junior Juwan Underwood (Atlanta, Ga.) in the men’s 100-yard backstroke (59.09).


Sophomore Alyx Koert (Naples, Fla.) had one of the women’s team’s top performances on the day: sixth place in the 1,000-yard freestyle (11:07.03).

The Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s and Women’s Swimming Teams next compete in the Wingate Fall Frenzy – also at the Mecklenburg County Aquatics Center in Charlotte, N.C. – on Friday, November 18, through Sunday, November 20.


NCAA Division II Men's and Women's Swimming
Final Results
November 4-5, 2016 – Charlotte, N.C.
Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center
1. Wingate 750
2. Lenoir-Rhyne 381
3. Catawba 250
4. Limestone 223
1. Wingate 613
2. Lenoir-Rhyne 406
3. Catawba 379
4. Limestone 285

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