Sports

Sports (743)

Appalachian State University women’s basketball (5-7, 0-1 SBC) fell in mark performance in the Sun Belt opener, 74-63, to UT Arlington (8-3, 1-0 SBC) Thursday evening in the College Park Center.


Bria Carter (Spotsylvania,Va./Spotsylvania) put in her second double-double of the season with 10 points and a game-high 10 boards, while Joi Jones (Duluth, Ga./Duluth) scored a team-high 12 points to round out the leading scorers.


The Apps withstood an early Maverick 16-2 start in the first quarter where the Sun Belt Preseason favorites made five of the first eight field goals while limiting Appalachian to a 1-for-6 start before Amber Driver (Houston, Texas/Tyler JC) scored three of her seven points with a 3-pointer to stop the run.


However, the Apps didn’t back down to the hosts as they outscored the hosts 31-19 the rest of the half, which was highlighted by a 20-8 run stretching into the second quarter. Appalachian began the surge by going on a 12-4 run to slice the deficit to six at the end of the first quarter, 20-14.


Appalachian continued the momentum into the second quarter hitting 6-of-8 to start the second frame during a 10-2 run. Cydni Cole’s (Glen Burnie, Md./George Mason) layup with 6:07 left capped off a string of five-straight made buckets and the Apps’ first lead of the game, 26-24. UTA responded by scoring eight of the next 10 points to go in front, 32-28. But App State was able to cut the lead to a possession thanks to Jones’ trifecta and a Bayley Plummer (Thomasville, N.C./East Davidson) layup before the horn sounded.


During the comeback, App State held UTA to 5-of-25 from the field since the 6:05 mark in the first quarter. Appalachian picked it up on offense shooting 12-for-23 from the floor. Appalachian also held Sun Belt’s Preseason Player of the Year Rebekah VanDijk to 3-for-9 shooting in the first half.


UTA held the lead for the entire third quarter, but the Apps stayed on its heels despite facing a lead by as much as six, 53-47, with 1:34 left in the frame. Appalachian continued to battle back as the senior duo of Carter and Jones scored five-straight points including a layup by Jones with three seconds left that floated over the long arms of VanDijk to close the gap to one, 53-52, going into the final quarter.


In a quarter that featured two ties and eight lead changes, the Apps had the Mavs right where they wanted them, with a 57-55 lead following an and-1 by Ashley Bassett-Smith (Pickerington, Ohio/UT Martin). Bassett-Smith later found Driver in the corner for a wide-open shot to give App the 61-60 advantage after a pair of traded baskets between both teams.


With 6:43 left in the game, both teams wouldn’t score again until 2:09 left in the game. Appalachian had UTA on the ropes, but the Mavericks went on a 14-2 run to end the game with the win, forcing App State into five turnovers and scoring nine points off the miscues.


App State outrebounded the Mavs, 40-36, and held the edge in second chance points, 13-12. However, UTA forced 22 App State turnovers into 26 points while outscoring Appalachian 31-12 at the free throw line and 21-6 beyond the arc.


VanDijk led all scorers with 20 points while Cierra Johnson (15 points) and Aysia Evans chipped in with 11 points to round out the Mavericks' leaders in scoring.

Tip-Ins


- Carter has registered both of the Apps’ double-doubles this season.
- The bench’s 21 points marks the first time the reserves have scored 20 points in consecutive games.
- Bassett-Smith’s two blocks moved her past Brittany Mixon (2005-09) into fifth place all-time with 108 career blocks. She is now 21 away from passing KeKe Cooper.
- For the second-straight game, the duo of Plummer and Driver played well off the bench, combining for 15 points and 11 boards. Plummer tied her career high with nine rebounds and scored eight points, while Driver chipped in with seven points.

For her dedication, commitment and courageous spirit, Appalachian State University women’s basketball head coach Angel Elderkin is a recipient of the 2017 United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) Pat Summitt Most Courageous Award, as announced on Thursday by the USBWA.


For the first time in the history of the award, the USBWA has chosen two very deserving recipients as ESPN reporter Holly Rowe will join Coach Elderkin as an award winner. Like coach Elderkin, Rowe has been in an ongoing battle with the deadly disease, but has continued to do what she loves while fighting it.


Named after legendary Tennessee Head Coach Pat Summitt in 2012, the Pat Summitt Most Courageous Award honors individuals associated with women’s college basketball.


“This award is extra special to me because of its connection to Pat (Summitt),” Elderkin mentioned. “I was lucky enough to to work with her and see what an amazing woman, coach and mother she was. She made such an impact on me and what I learned from her still impacts me every day.”


Coach Elderkin epitomizes what the Pat Summitt Most Courageous Award stands for. Elderkin was diagnosed with Stage III Endometrial Cancer during the summer, but continued to coach the Mountaineers. All of the visible cancer was removed through surgery, but Coach Elderkin still had to complete a rigorous treatment plan before the season started. This plan included six chemotherapy treatment cycles & a period of radiation, which required her to be at the Lineberger Cancer Center five days a week. During her chemo treatments, she would commute from Chapel Hill, N.C. for treatments to Boone, N.C. to continue being with the team for practices. During her radiation treatment, she would leave Monday after a morning workout and return Friday for an afternoon workout, rarely missing any workouts or events with her players. She remained visible to her players throughout one of the toughest battles she ever had to fight.


Heading into Thursday’s contest against UT Arlington, coach Elderkin has yet to miss a game this season, including five-straight road games to start the season. Following her final chemo treatment, the Mountaineers began a stretch of two games in four days on the road.


Coach Elderkin’s will to fight, her courage and bravery has inspired the Mountaineers’ staff, fan base and countless coaches and players across the nation. Her passion for basketball and the will to coach through adversity shows you can do what you love while battling this deadly disease.


“When I was given my diagnosis, I knew that I had only one choice -- and that was to fight with everything I have to give,” said Elderkin. “I have received so much support from the entire women’s basketball community, and it has made such a difference as I continue to fight and beat this disease. I am so thankful to the USBWA, not only for this recognition, but for the support of its members over the last six months. Women’s basketball is truly a community and I am thankful to be part of it.”


Coach Elderkin and Rowe will receive their awards at USBWA Awards press conference at the NCAA Women’s Final Four in Dallas in March.


The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With more than 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. For more information on the USBWA and its award programs, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.


“Coach Angel deserves this award because she exudes courage. To have courage means to face obstacles head on even if you are afraid. Taking on a bunch of young women she hadn’t recruited for her basketball team and wanting to better them is courageous. Fighting an illness that she has no complete control over and still giving us 100% is brave. She inspires me to love others regardless of outcomes, regardless of whether or not they can do things for me. She inspires me to be a better version of myself by being selfless. When I see others down, I make an effort to lift them up. When I see someone struggling, I make an effort to go the extra mile to give them my hand. Coach Elderkin is shining a light in my world.” - Senior forward Bria Carter


“She’s one of the few coaches in my career that cares about her players as people outside of basketball. It’s more than just a business to her; this is her life. That fact that she was diagnosed with cancer and immediately asked the doctor if her treatments would interfere with practice exhibits the bravery she shows. She’s the strongest coach I have ever had, and there’s no one else who deserves this more. She’s the very epitome of her name. Our Angel! “ - Senior guard Jasmine Ogunjimi


“Coach Angel deserves this award because she is one of the most selfless coaches I have played for. She always puts the team first and in dealing with her health this past summer, she never once let her team down. She always kept us first, almost to the point where we had to ask her to focus on her health. Coach Angel deserves this award because she has fought this battle and WON! She always brings passion and energy to the court and never lets up on the team. Out of anybody in my life or I have come across, I can’t think of a better recipient for this award.” - Senior forward Ashley Bassett-Smith


“Courage is what she has shown throughout her battle with cancer. There has not been a day that I have seen where she has let this adversity from being the loving coach, mentor, leader, and friend that she is. I have learned that serving others is one of the strongest forms of courage and to do so willingly and out of love is incredible. Her name fits her perfectly because she is truly an angel to those of us who have been blessed to know her. The Pat Summitt Courage Award will be represented substantially by a person who I consider one of the most courageous people I know.” - Senior guard Joi Jones


“Coach Angel is one of the strongest people I know. She has sacrificed her time, sleep and even her health for the benefits of the team. She has made a home for us at App; somewhere we feel comfortable both on and off the court. At the end of the day, no matter the outcome, I know she loves her team and would do anything for us to be successful. Coach Elderkin is more than deserving of this award. Thank you for everything Coach Angel” - Senior forward Mia Marshall

 

Thursday, 29 December 2016 10:04

Hickory Crawdads to Host Winter Caravan in January

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The Hickory Crawdads have scheduled their 2017 Winter Caravan Luncheon for Wednesday, January 11th at Rock Barn Golf & Spa, with the event scheduled to run from 12:00 pm - 1:30pm.

To kick off the 25th season of Crawdads baseball, the luncheon will feature a slate of Rangers personnel including manager Jeff Banister, new Crawdads manager Spike Owen, and Major League Field Coordinator Josh Bonifay (all speakers are tentative and subject to change at any time).

Banister, entering his third season at the helm, led the Rangers to back-to-back American League West Division Championships and last year's best record in the American League. He was named 2015 American League Manager of the Year.

Owen, originally named the Crawdads manager for the 2016 season, spent last year with the Texas Rangers as the interim third base coach. He made his managerial debut with the Class-A Advanced High Desert Mavericks in 2015, where he guided the team to a 78-62 record and a Second Half South Division title in the California League.

Bonifay played for the Crawdads from 2000-01 and also served as the 'Dads assistant coach in 2008. The Hickory resident was promoted to Major League Field Coordinator in November.

In addition to the featured speakers, the 'Dads will also reveal a new logo to celebrate 25 years of Crawdads baseball in Hickory.

"With pitchers and catchers reporting just three weeks after the luncheon and the unveiling of our 25th anniversary logo, this event is the perfect way to prepare for the 2017 season," said Crawdads GM Mark Seaman. "We're excited to welcome a great group of Rangers, especially someone of Jeff Banister's caliber, to Hickory."

Tickets for the Winter Caravan Luncheon are now available for $25. Ticket price includes the main event and a picnic-style buffet. For more information, or to order tickets, call the Crawdads front office at (828) 322-3000 or stop by the 'Dads front office at L.P. Frans Stadium. Tickets may also be ordered online at hickorycrawdads.com.

Dick's Sporting Goods Classic - Girls:
Alexander Central: 47
Bunker Hill: 19

Hickory: 69
St. Stephens: 21

Newton-Conover: 64
Fred T. Foard: 41

South Caldwell: 39
Maiden: 25

Thursday's schedule:
7th place game: Fred T. Foard vs. Bunker Hill, 10am
5th place game: Alexander Central vs. Newton-Conover, 1pm
3rd place game: Maiden vs. St. Stephens, 4pm
Championship: Hickory vs. South Caldwell, 7pm

Freedom Invitational - Girls:
East Burke: 63
McDowell: 59

Erwin: 72
Hibriten: 45

Freedom: 73
R-S Central: 57

Thursday's schedule:
7th place game: Hibriten vs. Asheville Christian, 10am
Championship: East Burke vs. Freedom, 7pm

Peoples Bank Holiday Clash - Girls
Championship
Lincolnton: 77
Bandys: 66

Wildcat Christmas Tournament -Girls
Draughn: 49
Highland School of Technology: 35

Avery County: 47
Patton: 37

Thursday's schedule:
3rd place game: Highland Tech vs. Patton, 4pm
Championship: Avery County vs. Draughn, 7pm

Colvard Oil Classic - Girls:
Third place game:
West Caldwell: 46
West Wilkes: 37

Dick's Sporting Goods Classic - Boys:
Fred T. Foard: 40
Newton-Conover: 36

Hickory: 45
Alexander Central: 36

Maiden: 73
South Caldwell: 44

St. Stephens: 41
Bunker Hill: 21

Thursday schedule:
7th place game: Bunker Hill vs. Newton-Conover, 11:30am
5th place game: St. Stephens vs. Fred T. Foard, 2:30pm
3rd place game: South Caldwell vs. Alexander Central, 5:30pm
Championship: Maiden vs. Hickory, 8:30pm

Freedom Invitational - Boys:
Freedom: 69
East Burke: 50

Hibriten: 62
McDowell: 57

Thursday schedule:
3rd place game: East Burke vs. McDowell, 5:30pm
Championship: Hibriten vs. Freedom, 8:30pm

Wildcat Christmas Tournament - Boys
Western Guilford: 57
Patton: 53

Draughn: 68
Highland Tech: 41

Thursday's schedule:
3rd place game: Patton vs. Highland Tech, 5:30pm
Championship: Western Guilford vs. Draughn, 8:30pm

Peoples Bank Holiday Clash - Boys
Championship
Lincolnton: 84
Bandys: 56

Colvard Oil Classic - Boys:
Championship
Ashe County: 79
West Caldwell: 76

Wednesday, 28 December 2016 06:57

High School Basketball Results From Tuesday, 12/27/16

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Dick's Sporting Goods Classic Girls:
Hickory: 71
Bunker Hill: 32

Maiden: 55
Newton-Conover: 49

St. Stephens: 44
Alexander Central: 41

South Caldwell: 49
Fred T. Foard: 28

Today's schedule at CVCC's Tarlton Complex:
Fred T. Foard vs. Newton-Conover, 10am
Alexander Central vs. Bunker Hill, 1pm
South Caldwell vs. Maiden, 4pm
St. Stephens vs. Hickory, 7pm


Freedom Christmas Invitational Girls:
East Burke: 53
Erwin: 43

Freedom: 58
Wilkes Central: 39

McDowell: 52
Hibriten: 15

Today's schedule at Freedom High School:
Erwin vs. Hibriten, 10am
East Burke vs. McDowell, 4pm
Freedom vs. R-S Central, 7pm


People's Bank Holiday Clash Girls:
Bandys: 60
West Lincoln: 34

Today's schedule at Lincolnton High School:
Championship: Bandys vs. Lincolnton


Colvard Oil Holiday Classic Girls:
Watauga 49, West Caldwell: 35

Today's schedule at Ashe County High School:
Third place: West Caldwell vs. West Wilkes, 3pm

Dick's Sporting Goods Classic Boys:
Alexander Central: 50
St. Stephens: 41

Hickory: 72
Bunker Hill: 39

Maiden: 51
Newton-Conover: 40

South Caldwell: 66
Fred T. Foard: 36

Today's schedule at CVCC's Tarlton Complex:
Bunker Hill vs. St. Stephens, 11:30am
Fred T. Foard vs. Newton-Conover, 2:30pm
Hickory vs. Alexander Central, 5:30pm
South Caldwell vs. Maiden, 8:30pm

Freedom Christmas Invitational Boys:
East Burke: 55
Erwin: 50

Freedom: 96
Wilkes Central: 62

Hibriten: 69
R-S Central: 34

Today's schedule at Freedom High School:
Hibriten vs. McDowell, 5:30pm
East Burke vs. Freedom, 8:30pm


People's Bank Holiday Clash Boys:
Bandys: 71
West Lincoln: 52

Today's schedule at Lincolnton High School:
Championship: Bandys vs. Lincolnton, 7pm


Colvard Oil Holiday Classic Boys:
West Caldwell: 73
Watauga: 66

Today's schedule at Ashe County High School:
West Caldwell vs. West Wilkes, 7:30pm

Wednesday, 28 December 2016 06:21

App's Cox to Participate in East-West Shrine Game

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Appalachian State’s all-time leading rusher Marcus Cox (Dacula, Ga.) has accepted an invitation to the 92nd East-West Shrine Game on Jan. 21 in St. Petersburg, Fla. at Tropicana Field. The game will be televised on the NFL Network.

Cox recently capped one of the great careers in Appalachian State history becoming the Mountaineers’ career rushing leader, surpassing 5,000 yards for his career, and reaching 1,000 yards for his fourth consecutive season, all over the Mountaineers’ final four games.

Cox led the Sun Belt in yards per carry (6.4) and rushing yards per game (112.8) as a senior, earning Second Team All-Sun Belt honors despite missing four games. He went over 5,000 yards for his career in the second quarter of the Camellia Bowl. His 5,103 yards are 16th in FBS history, while his 29 career 100-yard rushing games are also an App State record. Cox finished his career as the NCAA’s No. 2 active career leader in rushing yards and was No. 3 in all-purpose yards.

Cox picked up 21 yards on his final few carries of the season to help App run out the clock on a 31-28 win over Toledo in the Camellia Bowl. The yards pushed him over 1,000 for the season, making him one of fewer than 10 plays in FBS history to go over 1,000 yards in a season, four times.

App State claimed the 2016 Sun Belt Championship and capped back-to-back 10-win seasons with a second straight Camellia Bowl win on Dec. 17. over Toledo, 31-28.

The East-West Shrine Game is a proven starting point for athletes seeking careers in the NFL. Many of professional football’s most recognized and decorated players, including Tom Brady, Brett Favre and John Elway, all played in East-West Shrine Games.

More than 90 players from last year’s game signed with professional teams this spring, and more than 70 made final NFL rosters. On average, more than 265 East-West Shrine Game alumni are on NFL rosters each year. Since the game’s inception, 72 former players have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and more than 200 have been named to the College Football Hall of Fame. An invitation to take part in the annual East-West Shrine Game is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the best collegiate football all-stars in the country to showcase their talents in front of top representatives from NFL teams. A strong performance in the game can greatly impact a player’s chances of a career in the NFL.

The players are selected based on their potential to make an NFL roster. A consensus of the 32 NFL teams is taken into consideration to field two teams of players who meet this criterion. The general divide used to assign East and West teams is the Mississippi River; however, exceptions are made to ensure that the best 100 players are selected for the game, regardless of location.

Girls basketball
Non-conference:
Ashe County: 50
Hibriten: 30

Freedom: 63
East Burke: 49

Newton-Conover: 51
Fred T. Foard: 36

Boys basketball
Non-conference:
Fred T. Foard: 56
Newton-Conover: 48

Freedom: 65
East Burke: 44

Hibriten: 74
Ashe County: 66

Wednesday, 21 December 2016 23:21

High School Basketball Results From Wednesday, 12/21/16

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Girls basketball
Non-conference:
Maiden: 49
St. Stephens: 48

McDowell: 49
Alexander Central: 43

Boys basketball
Non-conference:
McDowell: 62
Alexander Central: 42

Maiden: 51
St. Stephens: 50

Patton: 50
Draughn: 45

Appalachian State University 125-pound wrestler Vito Pasone (Wilkes-Barre, Pa./E.L. Meyers) was tabbed the Southern Conference Wrestler of the Week after his performance in three matches for the Mountaineers.

The senior faced three top-15 opponents last week, going 2-1 and catapulting into the top 20 himself. The Mountaineers (7-2, 3-0 SoCon) also went 2-1 on the week, jumping from No. 21 in the nation to No. 17.

No. 18 Pasone began his week with a 9-3 decision over No. 11 Nathan Kraisser of Campbell as Appalachian stormed to a 24-13 win. The Black and Gold then traveled to face its second SoCon foe of the week, tackling SIUE where Pasone downed the No. 8 125-pounder, Freddie Rodriguez, with an impressive 22-7 technical fall to keep App State undefeated in league play, 39-4.

The Pennsylvania-native’s lone loss of the week came at the hands of No. 5 Missouri as the Tigers narrowly escaped the Mountaineers. Pasone fell to No. 7 Barlow McGhee, 11-3, snapping his five-match win streak.

The wins last week move Pasone closer to eclipsing the 90-win career mark. Currently at 87, the senior is ranked eighth all-time in program history at Appalachian.

Appalachian State wrestling now has a 19-day break between dual matches but will be participating in the Southern Scuffle in Chattanooga, Tenn. on New Year’s Day. The Mountaineers next duals match will be in Varsity Gym on Jan. 8 as they return home to host both The Citadel (1-1, 0-0 SoCon) and Clarion. The action is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m.

Lockdown defense and strong rebounding propelled Appalachian State University women’s basketball past UNC Asheville, 81-51, on Wednesday afternoon at the Holmes Center.

The Mountaineers (5-6) dismantled the No. 1 scoring offense in the Big South, with relentless pursuit, getting 16 takeaways and holding the Bulldogs (6-3) to a tied-season-low 51 points and a season-worst 27.3 percent shooting clip.

Appalachian’s offense was also rolling, recording a season high in field goal percentage (43.9), a season high in points, and a season best in rebounds (51) and blocks (9). Also, the Mountaineers displayed their best ball movement of the season, dishing out a season-high 21 assists.

Leading the Mountaineers in board crashing was Bayley Plummer (Thomasville, N.C./East Davidson) finished with a career-high nine rebounds while hosting the block party was Ashley Bassett-Smith (Pickerington, Ohio/UT Martin), who stuffed three shots, while Plummer and Driver each threw two shots back.

The Black and Gold were led on offense by three double-digit scorers. Q Murray (Baltimore, Md./George Mason) finished with a career-high 22 points and a season-high five assists while Joi Jones (Duluth, Ga./Duluth) tallied a complete game, recording13 points, eight rebounds, and four assists.

Amber Driver (Houston, Texas/Tyler JC) saved her best performance of the season in the non-conference finale, coming off the bench to score a career-high 11 points and put in a personal-best seven rebounds. Madi Story’s (Maiden, N.C./Bandys) double-figure scoring streak was snapped at four games, but boasted a plus-30 in the plus/minus column, stuffing the stat sheet with six points, eight boards, and six assists.

It was a back-and-forth affair in the first quarter between both teams. With two seconds left in the first quarter and Appalachian trailing by one, 11-10, Murray spearheaded a 7-2 spurt with a corner 3-pointer to give the Apps a 13-11 advantage going into the second frame.

Appalachian never succeeded the lead as it blew the doors open in the second quarter, outscoring the visitors, 20-7, thanks to the help of next-level defense. App State held UNCA without a field goal for the entire quarter en route to its lowest point total of any half this season with 18.

With App State leading 17-13, the Black and Gold used an 11-0 run over a 5:44 span to take a 28-13 lead. The duo of Plummer and Driver provided the run with nine of the points with Murray sealing the spurt with a pair of free throws. The defense held UNCA scoreless for more than seven minutes and missing all six shots.

App State went into the half with a 33-18 edge while holding the Bulldogs to 21 percent shooting from the field. Five players scored at least five points, and the Apps assisted on nine of 12 field goals.

The Mountaineers never let the lead dip below double digits en route to ballooning the lead to as much as 34 in the fourth quarter, 75-41. Appalachian dominated on both ends of the floor in a win that will surely give the Black and Gold confidence going into conference play and snapping the three-game slide.

App State’s defense hounded UNCA’s leading scorers in Tianna Knuckles, Khaila Webb, and Chatori Major. The trio came in averaging more than 10 points but was held to 17 points combined on 5-of-22 shooting from the floor.

The bench played its best game of the season scoring a season-high 27 points while App State scored 23 points off of the Bulldogs’ miscues.

The Mountaineers travel to UT-Arlington for the beginning of Sun Belt Conference play. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET on Dec. 29.

The 2017 Sun Belt Conference Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships are scheduled for a week of March Madness in the Big Easy. New Orleans will once again be home to the two championships that will take place at Lakefront Arena from March 7-12, and ticket books can now be purchased from your our ticket office. For more information, visit the Sun Belt Conference’s championship central websites - Men’s Championship – Women’s Championship – and be sure to follow the @FunBelt on social media - @SunBelt.

Quotable:
“This was a great win for our team against a very good UNC Asheville squad. Our defense came out and set the tone, and we were aggressive on the offensive end. The players had a good week of practice, and it showed in today’s game. I was proud of how our bench stepped up with Amber (Driver) and Bayley (Plummer) providing offense and rebounding. Q (Murray) played great basketball on both ends of the floor. It was a total team effort, and this victory will give us confidence going into Sun Belt play. - Angel Elderkin

Tip-Ins
- App State’s 1.038 points per possession is a season best.
- Plummer’s plus-31 is a team best this season while Story (30), Murray (26), Jones (21) and Carter (18) followed suit.
- Appalachian is 4-0 when scoring more than 70 points.
- App State has four wins when at least three players score in double figures.
- The 30-point margin is the highest margin of victory since defeating Chattanooga, 77-46, on March 2nd, 2013.
- The margin of victory is also the largest in the Angel Elderkin Era.
- App State improves to 14-3 all-time, while it’s the 11th double-digit win in the series.
- App State is 3-0 under coach Elderkin in the Christmas sweater game.

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