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Tuesday, 18 November 2014 21:38

Alexander County Hosted 2014 Rocky 50K Trail Race

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The 2014 Rocky 50K Trail Race was held Saturday, Nov. 15 at Rocky Face Mountain Recreational Area in Alexander County. The race began with participants climbing the "Stairway to Heaven" trail, then running the rest of the trails that were specially marked for the 50K event (approximately 31 miles). The trail race was difficult, but offered some breathtaking views from atop the mountain. First place finisher was Benjamin Smoker, who completed the course in 7:32:32. Second place went to Psyche Wimberly with a time of 8:15:41, and third place went to Charles Raffensperger with a time of 8:15:46. For more information about running events in Alexander County, visit www.alexandercountync.gov/events. For more information about Rocky Face Park, visit www.rockyfacepark.com.

Lenoir-Rhyne University's Chris Green has been named the South Atlantic Conference Football Defensive Player Of The Week, league officials announced today.

Green, a sophomore defensive lineman from Albany, Ga., finished with a team-best seven tackles to go along with a sack and a fumble recovery in Lenoir-Rhyne's 27-21 win over Catawba in the regular season finale last Saturday at Moretz Stadium.

Green's fumble recovery led to a field goal for the Bears, who defeated the Indians for the sixth consecutive season.

On the year, Green has 43 tackles including eight takedowns for a loss, 2.5 quarterback sacks, a forced fumble and a blocked kick.

Green is part of a Lenoir-Rhyne defense which ranks ninth in the nation in scoring (14.9 ppg) and first in the South Atlantic Conference in total yards allowed (306.4 ypg) and rushing yards allowed (129.0 ypg).

Lenoir-Rhyne (11-0, 7-0), the third-ranked team in NCAA Division II, just capped off its fourth perfect regular season in school history.

Tusculum's Kyle Dickey and Brevard's Alex Noboa were named the South Atlantic Conference Offensive and Special Teams Players Of The Week, respectively.

Lenoir-Rhyne is the top seed in Super Region II for the second straight year and will host a second round playoff game on Saturday, November 29 at Noon. The Bears will face the winner of the first round game between fourth-seeded North Alabama (9-1) and fifth-seeded Valdosta State (8-2), which takes place this Saturday in Florence, Ala.

For the third-straight week, an Appalachian State University football standout is the Sun Belt Conference’s Offensive Player of the Week, as running back Marcus Cox (Dacula, Ga./Dacula) has received the award for the second time, the Sun Belt office announced on Monday morning.

Cox’s latest honor comes on the strength of his 229-yard rushing performance in Saturday’s 37-32 victory at three-time-defending Sun Belt champion Arkansas State.

The sophomore’s 229 yards came on a career-high 40 carries, which were the third-most in Appalachian State history and the most by a Mountaineer since Damon Scott toted the ball 42 times in a win over Chattanooga in 1996. The 229 rushing yards were the 13th-highest total in school history.

Cox had two touchdown runs (one and 14 yards), added two receptions for 54 yards and averaged 5.7 yards per rush and 6.7 yards per touch in the win over Arkansas State. He took over the game in the third quarter, when he accounted for 139 of Appalachian’s 176 yards in the period to help the Mountaineers turn a 20-13 halftime deficit into a 27-20 lead.

The 200-yard rushing effort is Cox’s second in three games and the third of his 22-game career. He rushed for a career-high 250 yards against Georgia State on Nov. 1 and had 215 yards on the ground in last season’s finale versus Western Carolina.

Cox, who has six 100-yard games this season and 12 in his career, upped his season rushing total to 1,142 yards on Saturday to become the first running back in Appalachian State history to rush for 1,000 yards as a freshman and sophomore. Quarterback Armanti Edwards (2006-07) is the only other Mountaineer to accomplish the feat.

The Sun Belt honor is Cox’s second, following the one he received after his 250-yard effort against Georgia State. Last week, App State quarterback Taylor Lamb (Calhoun, Ga./Calhoun) was the Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Week after throwing for 276 yards and two touchdowns in a 31-29 win over UL Monroe.

Winners of four-straight, Cox and the Mountaineers travel to Sun Belt power UL Lafayette (7-3, 6-0 Sun Belt) on Saturday. Kickoff is set for 5 p.m. ET at Cajun Field in Lafayette, La.

The Lenoir-Rhyne Volleyball Team (22-9) has earned a berth in the NCAA Division II Southeast Region Tournament and will face Armstrong State (28-2) in the quarterfinals on Thursday at Cuddy Arena in Wingate, N.C.

Lenoir-Rhyne, the seventh seed in the region, is making its third appearance in the NCAA Division II National Tournament. The Bears also made the postseason in 2004 and 2012.

Second-seeded Armstrong State is ranked No. 20 in the nation and won both the Peach Belt Conference Regular Season and Tournament Championships. The two teams met in the season opener in Charlotte, N.C., on Friday, September 5, with the Pirates prevailing in three sets.

Lenoir-Rhyne is led this year by senior outside hitter Haley Rhyne (Statesville, N.C.), a three-time All-South Atlantic Conference honoree (2012-14). Rhyne is second on the team in kills this year with 290 to go along with 115 blocks while junior setter Briana Gottberg (Mooresville, N.C.) has 1,145 assists and 323 digs.

Middle blocker Brooke Redmond (Statesville, N.C.) earned league freshman-of-the-year honors for the Bears. Redmond leads the team in kills (317) and is second in digs (327).

Wingate (31-2), ranked No. 12 in NCAA Division II, will serve as the host school and the top seed. The Bulldogs won the SAC Regular Season and Tournament Championships in 2014 and have advanced to the Elite Eight three of the last four seasons.

2014 NCAA Division II Southeast Region
Volleyball Tournament
November 20-22 – Wingate, N.C.
Cuddy Arena

Thursday, November 20 – QUARTERFINALS
Match One – No. 3 USC Aiken (21-8) vs. No. 6 Carson-Newman (26-6), Noon
Match Two – No. 2 Armstrong State (28-2) vs. No. 7 Lenoir-Rhyne (22-9), 2:30 p.m.
Match Three – No. 4 GRU Augusta (26-8) vs. No. 5 Anderson (25-8), 5:00 p.m.
Match Four – No. 8 Erskine (21-8) at No. 1 Wingate (31-2), 7:30 p.m.

Friday, November 21 – SEMIFINALS
Match Five – Match One winner vs. Match Two winner, 5:00 p.m.
Match Six – Match Three winner vs. Match Four winner, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 22 – FINALS
Match Seven – Match Five winner vs. Match Six winner, 5:00 p.m.

Sunday, 16 November 2014 23:44

Five App Wrestlers Place at Road Runner Open

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After dropping matches to CSU Bakersfield and Illinois on Friday, Appalachian State University Wrestling saw five Mountaineers place at the Road Runner Open on Sunday in Fresno.

Dylan Cottrell (Spencer, W.Va./Roane County) continued his red hot start to the season and remained unbeaten on the year. Cottrell recieved a first round bye followed by a second round decision win over Stanford’s Josh Lauderdale. Cottrell breezed through the quarterfinal with a major decision victory against Bakerfield’s AJ Fierro. A tie breaker victory in the semifinal sent the 149 defending champion to the final. In the Final, Cottell won a 10-7 decision over Kyle Langenderfer (Illinois) to earn his second-straight Road Runner Open title.

Coming off of two victories at the tri-dual on Friday, heavyweight Denzel Dejournette (Winston-Salem, N.C./R.J. Reynolds) continued his hot streak at the Road Runner Open. Dejournette won his opening round matchup with a 19-4 tech fall of Bakersfield’s Steven Wood followed by a hard fought 5-4 decision against Chad Lopez of Illinois. In the quarterfinal, Dejournette pinned Sam Alnassiri at the 6:05 minute mark. Dejournette then moved on to the final after a tie breaker victory in the semifinal. The Winston-Salem native pinned Brooks Black (Illinois) en route to claiming first place.

In the 125 bracket, Dominic Parisi (Concord, N.C./Jay M. Robinson) cruised through the first two rounds with back-to-back pins. Parisi continued the dominant start to his tournament with a major decision again Yoshito Funakoshi (Cal Poly) in the quarterfinal. Oregon State’s Ronnie Besser ended Parisi’s run to first place with a 9-5 decision in the semifinal. In the consolation bracket, Parisi again was dominant, winning by major decision and then pinning Funakoshi to claim third place.

Michael Longo (Corona, Calif./Santiago) recieved a first round bye before pinning Austin Solari (Grand Canyon) at the 4:39 mark in the second round. In the quarterfinal, Longo was defeated by Nick Lawrence (Purdue) via a 7-1 decision. Longo won his next three matches in the consolation bracket to earn a spot in the third place match. UNC’s Troy Heilmann edged Longo in a close 7-5 decision, leaving the California native in fourth place at 141.

After a first round bye in the 165 bracket, redshirt freshman Nick Kee (Laurinburg, N.C./Scotland) won his opening match against Matt Nora (Illinois) with a 10-5 decision. Kee then dropped a 5-1 decision the following round to Jim Wilson (Stanford). The Laurinburg, N.C. native earned three-straight decision victories to have a chance for third place. Purdue’s Patrick Robinson pinned Kee 3:41 into the bout, leaving Kee in fourth place.

At 133, Vito Pasone (Wilkes-Barre, Pa./E.L. Meyers) and Jacob Grigg (Gastonia, N.C./East Gaston) eached added one victory in the championship bracket. Nick Vetell (Trinity, N.C./Trinity) recorded two victories in the 184 bracket before dropping a quarterfinal decision to Taylor Meeks (Oregon State).

Javon Johnson (Holly Springs, N.C./Holly Springs), Zack Strickland (Muncy, Pa./Muncy), Collin Johnson (Dallas, N.C./North Gaston), Kacee Hutchinson (Candler, N.C./Enka), Marcus Johnson (Mohnton, Pa./Governor Mifflin), and Tyler Radford (Marion, N.C./McDowell) all wrestled two matches, but did not record any wins.

Forrest Przybysz (Jefferson, Ga./Jefferson) sustained an injury in his opening match and was unable to continue.

The Mountaineers are back in action next Sunday in Philadelphia for the Keystone Classic.

Sunday, 16 November 2014 23:43

L-R Football Earns Top Seed in Playoffs, Bye Week

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Fresh off its fourth perfect regular season in school history, the third-ranked Lenoir-Rhyne Football Team (11-0) has earned the top seed in Super Region 2 and will host an NCAA Division II Second Round Playoff game on Saturday, November 29, at Moretz Stadium.

The Bears will face the winner of a first round playoff contest between fourth-seeded North Alabama (9-1) and fifth-seeded Valdosta State (8-2), which takes place this Saturday in Florence, Ala.

North Alabama is ranked No. 15 in NCAA Division II while Valdosta State is ranked 25th in country. Lenoir-Rhyne defeated North Alabama, 42-39, in last year's national quarterfinals.

Delta State (9-1), the second seed in the region and 13th-ranked team in the nation, also earned a bye and will play either third-seeded Tuskegee (9-2) or sixth-seeded West Georgia (9-2) in its second round home playoff game.

Lenoir-Rhyne earned a berth in last year's NCAA Division II Championship game and enters the playoffs winners of 24 of their last 25 games including 13 straight games at Moretz Stadium.

Lenoir-Rhyne has won the past four South Atlantic Conference Regular Season Championships and rank first in the nation in rushing offense at 415.5 yards per game.

The NCAA Division II National Championship game will take place on Saturday, December 20, 2014, at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kan.

Tickets are $15.00 for general admission and $10.00 for students with proper identification and will be on sale beginning Monday at Noon in the Shuford Memorial Gymnasium lobby. PEF/Bears Club members can begin purchasing reserve tickets ($20.00) on Monday as well.

2014 NCAA Division II Football Playoffs
Super Region No. 2

FIRST ROUND - Saturday, November 22, 2014
No. 6 West Georgia (9-2) at No. 3 Tuskegee (9-2)
No. 5 Valdosta State (8-2) at No. 4 North Alabama (9-1)

SECOND ROUND - Saturday, November 29, 2014
No. 6 West Georgia/No. 3 Tuskegee winner at No. 2 Delta State (9-1)
No. 5 Valdosta State/No. 4 North Alabama winner at No. 1 Lenoir-Rhyne (11-0)

The Lenoir-Rhyne Women's Soccer Team (16-3-3) advanced to the NCAA Division II Southeast Region Championship after holding a 4-3 edge over North Georgia (17-4-2) in penalty kicks Sunday afternoon in the second round at the Moretz Sports - Athletic Complex.

The match between the Bears and Nighthawks officially ended in a 2-2 tie after two overtimes. Lenoir-Rhyne is the second seed in the region while North Georgia was seeded third.

Lenoir-Rhyne will face fourth-ranked and top-seeded Columbus State (19-1-1) on Friday, November 21, in the regional finals. The match will be played at one of the South Region's remaining teams: Rollins or Saint Leo. Columbus State defeated Wingate at home by a 1-0 score in its second round playoff match.

Lenoir-Rhyne was able rally from a 2-0 deficit to force the tie and eventually move on to the next round on penalty kicks.

Junior All-American midfielder Garcelle Alequine (Wilmington, Del.) tied the score at two in the 65th minute for the Bears on a shot from about 20 yards out. The goal was Alequine's team-leading 14th of the year.

Lenoir-Rhyne freshman defender Dylan Bedell (Chapel Hill, N.C.) started the rally for the Bears with a goal late in the first half. Junior defender Amber Madriaga (Wailuku, Hawaii) was credited with the assist.

North Georgia, ranked No. 14 in NCAA Division II, took control early with goals by Mollie Arrendale (Atlanta, Ga.) and Jacy Ramey (Buford, Ga.) in the first 13 minutes of action but Lenoir-Rhyne was able to come back.

The Bears earned a berth in the regional finals for the third time in five years but the first time since 2011. Lenoir-Rhyne is ranked No. 20 in the nation and is 12-0-2 in its last 14 matches.

Lenoir-Rhyne sophomore goalkeeper Andrea Leano (San Diego, Calif.) played the final 88 minutes for the Bears and held North Georgia scoreless to go along with four saves. The Saints' goalkeeper, Mallory Sayre (Snellville, Ga.), stopped two shots as well.

Appalachian State University volleyball fell to UL Monroe on Sunday afternoon, dropping the match in the fifth set which featured scores of 25-21, 22-25, 19-25, 25-21 and 13-15.

The Mountaineers (19-9, 9-9 Sun Belt) have lost four of their six five-set matches this season, falling to the tenth-place Warhawks (9-22, 3-15) and giving them just their third conference win of year.

The Mountaineers got the early lead in the first set, making the score 6-2 but the Warhawks began to work their way back, tying the score a 12. The Mountaineers would go on a 7-2 run, finding kills from Emily Corrigan and Jess Keller to lead, 19-14.

The Apps would close out the first, scoring the last three points of the set to win 25-21.

The second set would begin the same but this time UL Monroe would have the early 6-2 lead. From there, Appalachian took control, tying the match at 11. The Warhawks would score four-straight points, but the Mountaineers responded with four-straight points of their own, not allowing UL Monroe to get too far ahead.

Appalachian went on a 5-1 run but still only led the Warhawks by two points as UL Monroe went on a 7-2 run of their own to win the set 25-22 and tie the match 1-1.

The third set was another close one as each team took the lead several times. UL Monroe would finally take a steady lead with a score of 10-7 but they would not be able to shake Appalachian, who continued to trail by no more than three points.

It would not be until a kill from Lauren Gray put the Apps down just 16-14 that the Warhawks came alive, scoring three-straight points for a 19-14 lead. The Warhawks scored five of the last six points of the set to take it 25-19.

Appalachian immediately dominated the fourth set, jumping out to a 6-1 lead. The Warhawks would score four-straight points but it did not deter the Mountaineers, who went on a 6-3 run to lead 12-8.

The Mountaineers continued to find points, never letting UL Monroe within less than three points to take a comfortable 25-21 victory in the fourth set and tie the match, 2-2.

Things would look good for the Apps in the fifth set as they took the first lead and maintained it, for a 10-7 lead on UL Monroe. With just five points left until victory, the Mountaineers fell apart as the Warhawks went on a 7-1 run to lead 14-11.

The Mountaineers attempted to come back, finding a kill from Jacqui Spurgeon to put them down by just one point, but the Warhawks got the last kill, taking the set 15-13 and winning the match 3-2.

Keller and Gray led the Mountaineers on offense with 22 and 20 kills, respectively. Paige Brown had 59 assists and 17 digs in the loss, while Meghan Mahoney recorded 20 digs to lead the Apps on defense, Kati Stammen followed with 19 digs.

The Warhawks were led by Hope Pawlik's 20 kills and Bayleigh Hoffman's match-high 61 assists.

The Mountaineers hit .190 on the day while UL Monroe recorded a .226 hitting percentage.

The Apps return to action when they take on Texas State at home on Thursday, Nov. 20.

The Francis Marion Men's Basketball Team (1-1) defeated Lenoir-Rhyne (0-2), 61-53, Saturday evening in the South Atlantic Conference/Peach Belt Conference Challenge at Goodman Gymnasium on the campus of Catawba College.

The Patriots' Detrek Browning (Columbia, S.C.) led all scorers with 25 points while David Jerome (Kissimmee, Fla.) finished with a double-double - 14 points and 11 rebounds - as Francis Marion picked up its first victory of the season.

Lenoir-Rhyne junior guard Will Perry (Wake Forest, N.C.) scored a team-high 22 points but was the lone player to score in double figures for the Bears, who committed 20 turnovers in the setback.

The Bears were down by as many as 15 points in the first half and trailed by a 29-18 margin at intermission.

A lay-up by Perry cut the margin to 49-47 with 2:43 remaining in the game, but Francis Marion responded with seven straight points to put the contest out of reach. The Patriots won despite shooting just 33 percent (19-of-57) for the game.

Lenoir-Rhyne junior forward Rob Noyes (Morganton, N.C.) added eight points and 10 rebounds in the losing effort as well.

Lenoir-Rhyne opens South Atlantic Conference play on Wednesday at 8:00 p.m., against Queens in Charlotte, N.C.

The Wingate University Volleyball Team (30-2) earned its 10th consecutive trip to the South Atlantic Conference Tournament Championship finals after downing Lenoir-Rhyne (22-9), 3-2, in the semifinals Saturday evening at Shuford Memorial Gymnasium.

The Bulldogs, ranked No. 12 in NCAA Division II, defeated the Bears by scores of 25-23, 25-20 and 25-15. The championship match is scheduled for Sunday and will pit top-seeded Wingate versus third-seeded Anderson (25-7) beginning at 3:00 p.m. Lenoir-Rhyne was the fifth seed in the tournament.

The Bulldogs were led by Shelly Stumpff (Iowa City, Iowa) and Abby Saehler (Iowa City, Iowa) with 10 kills each while Alison Cooke (Davidson, N.C.) added 36 assists and nine digs in the victory.

Lenoir-Rhyne senior outside hitter Haley Rhyne (Statesville, N.C.), a first-team all-league honoree, finished with a team-high seven kills and 10 digs while junior setter Briana Gottberg (Mooresville, N.C.) added 24 assists and eight digs in the setback.

Lenoir-Rhyne hit just .096 for the match as the Bulldogs defeated the Bears for the third time this season.

Lenoir-Rhyne, the sixth-ranked team in this week’s NCAA Division II Southeast Region Poll, will see if it earns a berth in the national postseason tournament. The pairings are scheduled to be announced on Sunday at 10:00 p.m.