Sports (605)

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 23:02

Appalachian State Baseball Defeats NC Central

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Matt Vernon (Advance, N.C./Davie County) and Tanner Mann-Fix (Charlotte, N.C./Olympic) had three hits apiece, Tyler Stroup (Thomasville, N.C./East Davidson) drove in five runs and Seth Hardin (Climax, N.C./Providence Grove) turned in five strong innings on the mound to lead Appalachian State University baseball to a 12-1 romp over North Carolina Central on Wednesday evening at Beaver Field at Jim and Bettie Smith Stadium.

Appalachian State’s 12 runs were a season high and its 15 hits fell just two short of its season best. The Mountaineers did all of their damage in the first five innings, scoring two runs in the first, one in the second, one in the third, five in the fourth and three in the fifth to jump out to a commanding 12-0 lead.

Vernon was the primary catalyst of App State’s outburst at the plate. The junior drove in the Mountaineers’ first run with an RBI triple in the first inning, added a two-run double in the fourth and capped the impressive evening with another double in the fifth. He finished 3-for-4 with two doubles, a triple, three RBI and four runs scored.

Mann-Fix came around to score after each of his three singles while Stroup recorded his career-high five RBI on a run-scoring groundout in the first and two-run singles in the fourth and fifth innings.

Appalachian State, which came into the game hitting just .199 with runners on base and .180 with runners in scoring position, went 11-for-26 (.423) with runners on base and 8-for-16 (.500) with runners in scoring position on Wednesday night.

In all, the first five batters in the Mountaineers’ order (Mann-Fix, Vernon, Stroup, Grayson Atwood (Mt. Pleasant, N.C./Mt. Pleasant) and Brian Bauk (Salisbury, N.C./Salisbury)) combined to go 12-for-20 with 10 RBI and nine runs scored.

Not to be overshadowed by the offensive explosion was the effort turned in by four App State pitchers, who combined to limit hot-hitting N.C. Central to just one unearned run on seven hits.

Hardin led the way, as he needed only 61 pitches to toss five shutout innings and earn the first win of his collegiate career. The right-handed freshman pounded the strike zone all night and allowed just two hits over his five scoreless frames. He struck out two and didn’t issue a walk.

Right-handed relievers Travis Holden (Advance, N.C./North Forsyth), Matt Schaeffer (Port St. Lucie, Fla./John Carroll Catholic) and Caleb McCann (McLeansville, N.C./Northeast Guilford) worked the final four innings of the gem. They surrendered just one unearned run and scattered five hits over their four innings.

Making the pitching performance even more impressive is the fact the N.C. Central (13-14) scored nine runs or more three times in the past eight days, including Tuesday’s 14-1 rout over High Point.

Appalachian State (6-19, 1-8 Sun Belt) continues its four-game homestand this weekend when it hosts red-hot Little Rock (12-12, 5-4 Sun Belt), the winner of six of its last seven games, for a three-game Sun Belt Conference series. Game times are set for 6 p.m. Friday, 3 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday at Smith Stadium.

The Lenoir-Rhyne Softball Team (29-7, 8-0) ran its winning streak to 10 straight games with a doubleheader sweep of Newberry (22-12, 3-5), 7-6 and 8-0, Wednesday afternoon at Bears and remained unbeaten in South Atlantic Conference play.

Game One – Lenoir-Rhyne 7, Newberry 6
Lenoir-Rhyne sophomore outfielder Christina Walker (Roxboro, N.C.) came through with the walk-off, run-scoring infield single with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning – plating junior catcher Sarah Kenley (Charlotte, N.C.) - as the Bears rallied from a 6-3 deficit to take the win.

Newberry surged ahead with six straight runs in the middle of the game highlighted by a two-run single from Mallory Gerndt (Burke, Va.) but couldn’t hold on in the end.

Lenoir-Rhyne was led by senior third baseman Jordin Phillips (Hampstead, N.C.) with two hits and two runs batted in while freshman Brandi Parks (Roaring River, N.C.) earned the win on the mound after pitching four scoreless innings and improving to 9-0 on the season.

Devon Morrison (Tampa, Fla.) suffered the loss on the mound for the Wolves, who were also hurt by five errors in the contest.

Game Two – Lenoir-Rhyne 8, Newberry 0 (six innings)
The Bears took control early with a pair of runs in both the first and second innings, respectively, to finish off the sweep the sweep of the Wolves.

Phillips and sophomore shortstop Madison Carter (Bessemer City, N.C.) both finished with three hits and two runs batted in for Lenoir-Rhyne, who run-ruled Newberry in six innings.

Senior Maryann Hoskins (Havelock, N.C.) also fired a one-hit shutout for the Bears. Hoskins struck out five batters and improved to 9-4 on the year. Morrison (7-6) was tagged with the loss for Newberry.

Lenoir-Rhyne remains at home to host Mars Hill in a South Atlantic Conference doubleheader on Saturday at 1:00 p.m.

Lenoir-Rhyne University officials announced today that head basketball coach, Ryan Odom has resigned. Odom joined the staff of LRU in May of 2015, and served as head coach for one season. He has accepted the position of head coach for the Division I level program at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC).

“We are certainly sad to see Coach Odom leave LRU after such a short period of time,” said LRU President Dr. Wayne Powell. “We appreciate his leadership during the past season and wish him continued success in his new position.”

The LR Men’s Basketball Team ended the 2016 season with a 21-10 record, advancing to the NCAA Division II Regional Finals for the first time in school history. They were ranked as the seventh seeded team entering the tournament, but were closed out of the Elite 8 following a loss to Lincoln Memorial (103-80).

Prior to joining LRU, Odom coached at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte from 2010 to 2015. In 2014, he was named associate head coach for the 49ers and, in January 2015, was named interim head coach for the remainder of the season. Odom was LRU’s 18th head coach in school history.

“I would like to thank Dr. Wayne Powell, Neill McGeachy, Brent Heaberlin, our players and the entire Lenoir-Rhyne family for this incredible opportunity,” Odom said. “The experience was nothing short of amazing, and I truly believe the foundation for continued success is in place. It was an honor to serve Bear Nation and my family and I are grateful to have become a small part of its storied traditions.” McGeachy served as Executive Director of Intercollegiate Athletics as well as Executive Director of the Piedmont Educational Foundation/Bears Club for 14 years before announcing his retirement. Heaberlin is the Associate Athletic Director and is serving as acting Athletic Director prior to the new Director of Intercollegiate Athletics, Kim Pate’s start in June.

A search for a new head coach will begin immediately according to University officials.

Appalachian State University women’s tennis (5-10) snapped a four-match skid on Wednesday with a 5-2 triumph over Gardner-Webb at Varsity Courts.

Despite dropping the doubles point with the Runnin’ Rebels taking two out of three matches, Appalachian captured five out of six singles contests en route to its fourth home win of the season.

“I thought we bounced back nicely and showed resiliency after falling in doubles play” said head coach Colin Crothers. “We picked up five tough wins in singles competition to get the victory.I was proud of the team today to get the win on our home court.”

Melissa Machado (Miami, Fla./Felix Varela) and Megan Mullen (Mooresville, N.C./Lake Norman) would fall in the first doubles contest of the afternoon to Rokia Sacko and Mary Walker Mixon in a clash of No. 2 pairings, 6-2. Moments later, Clare Cox (Greensboro, N.C./Grimsley) and Heidi Swope (Weddington, N.C./Weddington) won their third match as the top duo with a 6-3 victory over Stina Magnusson and Sandra Bolstad.

In the final doubles match, McKayla Zupan (Wilmington, N.C./Hoggard) and Taylor Bygrave (Monto, Australia/Miami Gold Coast) suffered a 7-5 setback to Sarah Rieckman and Catherine White as the third tandem after Zupan/Bygrave held a lead in the match.

Appalachian showed toughness and resiliency in singles action when Mackenzie LaSure (Asheville, N.C./Asheville) tied the match, 1-1, after toppling Sarah Rieckman at the four spot, 6-0, 6-1. Machado gave the Black and Gold the lead when she dropped Magnusson, 6-1, 6-3, for her sixth singles triumph of the season.

Cox would fall in a tightly-contest match to Rokia Sacko, 6-4, 6-4 as the No. 1 in the lineup. With the match tied 2-2, the Mountaineers took home the final three singles matches for the win. Gabrielle Wreder (Miami, Fla./Miami Killian) valiantly defeated Rieckmann as the No. 3, including a tiebreaking set-two win 7-6 (8-6).

The final two matches of the afternoon went to three sets. Zupan fell in the first set, 6-1, before storming back to take the next two games, 6-3,6-0 to clinch the match for Appalachian. After already having the match wrapped up, Swope still ended the Mountaineers’ day on a good note, as she went all three sets with Laura Fremosel. Swope won the first set, 7-5, followed by Fremosel tying the match, 6-3, followed by the freshman picking up the tiebreaking third set win, 7-6 (6-1).

Appalachian will look to continue the solid play on Sunday in Durham, N.C. at 3 p.m. against North Carolina Central.


- Machado and Wreder lead the team with six singles wins apiece, while Machado is 5-4 over her last nine matches.

- Cox and Swope are now tied with Bygrave/LaSure and Bygrave/Mullen for a team lead with three doubles wins.

- App State is now 4-2 at home this season (1-8 on the road).

Appalachian State University women’s track and field junior Tristin Van Ord (Chapel Hill, N.C./Chapel Hill) was named Sun Belt Conference Track Student-Athlete of the Week, announced by the league office on Wednesday afternoon.

Van Ord and the Mountaineers competed at the highly competitive Raleigh Relays last weekend and the Chapel Hill, N.C. native broke the program record in the 10,000-meter run last Friday.

The junior finished in fourth-place with a time of 34:19.36. The time for Van Ord currently stands as the top time in the Sun Belt by over 26 seconds, while also ranking fourth on the 2016 NCAA Division I East Outdoor Qualifying List and fourth overall in the NCAA this spring.

Van Ord, who previously set the 10,000-meter program record, topped her time by nearly four seconds. She set that mark just last season on the campus of NC State for the Raleigh Relays.

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 07:39

High School Baseball Results From Tuesday, 3/29/16

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Catawba County Easter Classic
Hickory: 6
Fred T. Foard: 3

Maiden: 10
Hibriten: 0

Newton-Conover: 8
West Caldwell: 6

St. Stephens: 9
Bunker Hill: 5

3rd place tonight: Fred T. Foard vs. Bunker Hill
Championship tonight: Hickory vs. St. Stephens

Shelby Easter Tournament:
South Caldwell: 5
Shelby: 1

Pitt County Classic:
Havelock: 3
Alexander Central: 1

McDowell: 14
Freedom: 2

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 07:38

High School Softball Results From Tuesday, 3/30/16

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Cherryville Easter Tournament:
Hibriten: 12
Forestview: 1

Hibriten: 9
Kings Mountain: 8

Freedom: 10
Burns: 9

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 07:36

Lenoir-Rhyne Baseball Downs Winston-Salem State

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The Lenoir-Rhyne Baseball Team (25-10) defeated Winston-Salem State (12-15), 7-3, Tuesday evening in a non-conference game at BB&T Park.

Lenoir-Rhyne senior shortstop Matthew De La Rosa (Austin, Texas) and senior first baseman Colby Dishmond (Statesville, N.C.) both had two-run hits in the third and fourth innings, respectively, in the victory.

Dishmond’s two-run double was part of a four-run fourth inning for the Bears as Lenoir-Rhyne jumped out to a 6-0 advantage before Winston-Salem State crossed the plate.

The Rams were led offensively by Michael McNamara (Scottsdale, Ariz.), who had a two-run single in the bottom of the fifth inning despite the setback.

Lenoir-Rhyne sophomore outfielder Marcus Shoemaker (Colfax, N.C.), who finished with a pair of hits, rounded out the scoring with an RBI single in the eighth frame.

On the mound, Lenoir-Rhyne freshman Brett Fulk (Forbush, N.C.) improved to 2-0 on the year after allowing just one run with four strikeouts in three innings of relief. Winston-Salem State’s Nathan Steger (Dyersville, Iowa) fell to 4-3 after taking the loss.

Lenoir-Rhyne returns to South Atlantic Conference play on Friday at 6:00 p.m., against Coker at Bears Field.

Appalachian State University women’s golf played the final round of the John Kirk Panther Intercollegiate on Tuesday at Eagle’s landing Country Club. The Mountaineers placed 11th of 15 teams after shooting a 308 in round three for a total of 931.

Elon took home first place with a total of 887. Western Kentucky and Western Michigan came in second and third with totals of 899 and 904, respectively.

Savanna Wood (Boone, N.C./Watauga High School) shot the lowest round of any Mountaineer on day three with a 76. Wood finished tied for 30th place. Emily Stinson (Charlotte, N.C./Ardrey Kell) carded a 77 to finished with a total of 229. Stinson tied for 20th place, the best finish of any of the Apps.

Joliana Elias (Jamestown, N.C./Penn-Griffin School for the Arts) matched Stinson’s 77 in the third round giving her a total of 233 for the tournament. Elias tied for 36th.

Madalyn Davis (Marion, N.C./McDowell) and Hannah Craver (Winston-Salem, N.C./Reagan) both shot 78 in their final rounds. Davis finished tied for 50th with a total of 237 while Craver tied for 67th with a total of 245.

After the first two rounds the Mountaineers were in 11th place.

Stinson shot a 74 in round one followed by a 76 in round two. Stinson was in a tie for 26th place with a total of 152.

Elias and Wood were tied for 38th with totals of 156. Elias shot 76 in round two after an 80 in round one. Wood carded a back-to-back rounds of 78.

Davis posted a 79 on day one followed by an 80 in round two. Davis was in a tie for 52nd place. Craver shot an 85 on Monday and then an 82 on Tuesday. Craver was tied for 71st.

The Mountaineers will be back in action on Sunday when they host the Mimosa Hills Intercollegiate in Morganton, N.C.

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 07:32

Hickory Crawdads Announce Opening Day Roster

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The Texas Rangers, parent club of the Hickory Crawdads, have released the Opening Day rosters for their minor league affiliates, including the 28 total players who will begin the season with the 'Dads.

The Crawdads boast 11 returning players from their 2015 South Atlantic League Championship squad, including SAL All-Star LHP Brett Martin and 1st round draft pick RHP Dillon Tate. Other returning alumni include LHP Joe Palumbo, RHP Pedro Payano, LHP Jeffry Springs, RHP Eric Swanson, catchers Chuck Moorman & Ricardo Valencia, infielder Dylan Moore, and outfielders Eric Jenkins & Eduard Pinto.

There are also eight total players who are ranked among the Rangers top prospects by either Baseball Americaand/or MLB.com, including three in the Top 10 in Tate (Baseball America #5/MLB.com #4), Jenkins (6/7), and infielder Andy Ibanez (8/16). Joining them on the Rangers top prospects lists is Martin (18/11), infielder Yeyson Yrizarri (27/12), RHP Jonathan Hernandez (20/28), infielder Ti'Quan Forbes (NA/30), and outfielder LeDarious Clark (31/NA).

Also of note is a pair of North Carolina natives in Jenkins and Springs. Jenkins was selected by the Rangers in the 2nd round of the 2015 Draft out of West Columbus High School in Cerro Gordo, NC. Born in Chadbourne, NC, Jenkins had committed to the University of North Carolina-Wilmington before signing with Texas. Springs meanwhile was a star pitcher at Appalachian State, where the Belmont, NC native finished his Mountaineers career in the top 10 in school history in starts (T3 - 43), innings pitched (7th - 243.1), and strikeouts (4th - 215).

The Crawdads open the season with a friendly exhibition game against Lenoir-Rhyne University on Monday, April 4th, before starting their SAL schedule on the road on Thursday, April 7th in Kannapolis. The 'Dads Home Opener is set for Thursday, April 14th against the Intimidators at 6pm. Tickets for all 70 home games are on sale now.

For more information regarding the Crawdads Opening Day roster, call the 'Dads front office at (828) 322-3000.

You may download the opening day roster by downloading the attachment below.