Sports (819)

Three Appalachian State University wrestlers were ranked in the Top 20 individuals for their respective weight classes in the InterMat 2016-17 Preseason NCAA Division I rankings.


Senior Denzel Dejournette (Winston-Salem, N.C./R.J. Reynolds) headlines the group, ranking at No. 10 in the nation in the heavyweight class after his Southern Conference Wrestler of the Year campaign last season. Junior Nick Kee (Laurinburg, N.C./Scotland) was ranked 16th in the 174-pound weight-class with junior Forrest Przybysz (Jefferson, Ga./Jefferson) rated just behind him at 17th in the 165-pound class.


Appalachian State’s four overall selections on InterMat’s preseason rankings are the second-most in the conference, behind only Chattanooga’s four.


The recognition for the three isn’t their first of the preseason as they all finished in the top 20 of Wrestling Insider Newsmagazine’s 2016-17 Tournament Power Index. Przybysz was ranked 19th in the 165-pound division after finishing 22-13 while Kee ranked 13th in the 174-pound division, finishing 29-9 last year. Dejournette ranked 11th in the heavyweight class after finishing 32-4 last year.


2016 Appalachian State wrestling season and individual match tickets are on sale now. Season tickets for adults will be $30/each and for youth fans (ages 3-12) $15/each. Individual match prices will be $7 for adults and $3 for youth except for Mountaineer Duals (Belmont Abbey/Oregon State) and Chattanooga, which will be $10 for adults and $3 for youth.

For the second time in as many weeks, freshman Jake Agnew (Farmington, Minn./Farmington) was named the Sun Belt Defensive Player of the week for his career-high eight saves in his shutout against Hartwick, the league announced Tuesday.


“What Jake was able to do last week was incredible for our team and I’m glad the Sun Belt recognized him once more,” head coach Jason O’Keefe said. “It’s also a testament to the core of goalkeepers we have in Agnew, Jaron Bradley, Jake Chasteen and Mitch Kilmer. They push each other daily as well as the team in front of them, which has been doing well also. Their continued hard work in practice and preparation for games puts us in a position to succeed.”


Once again last week, Agnew proved to be an immovable object between the frames, earning his third-straight shutout against the No. 1 overall Sun Belt team Hartwick in a rematch of the 2015 Sun Belt Tournament semifinals. With his career-high eight saves, the freshman stretched his unbeaten record to 3-0-3 – six-straight unbeaten for him and the team, which is the second longest streak in the Sun Belt. The shutout is the first time that Hartwick has been held scoreless by a conference opponent since Oct. 12, 2014 (Ga. Southern). With the clean sheet, Agnew has now gone 310 minutes without allowing a goal and is now second in the league in shutouts.

Despite just having six games under his belt, Agnew continues to top the conference with a 0.41 goals against average and a .893 save percentage. Those totals are good enough to rank him No. 2 in the country in both GAA and save percentage, while also making him the leader in both among freshman goalkeepers nationwide.


Agnew continues to top the conference with a 0.41 goals against average and a .893 save percentage. Those totals also rank him second-best in the country in both GAA and save percentage, while also making him the leader in both among other freshman goalkeepers in the nation.


The Mountaineers and Agnew return home and will look to extend their unbeaten streak to seven matches when they host Sun Belt newcomer Coastal Carolina on Wednesday, Oct. 19 at 7 p.m. for the annual “Pack the Mack” game. Fans are asked to come out and wear black to support their men’s soccer team. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m.

For the second time this season, Appalachian State University women’s cross country clinch a spot on the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Southeast Regional Rankings on Monday. The women seize the 14th slot on the list, one position higher than their rank on Sept. 19.


App State reigns as the only Sun Belt Conference institution featured on week five’s Southeast regional list. NC State remains as the top-ranked team in the region, followed by William and Mary and Kentucky, who both jumped up one spot from week four’s rankings.


Appalachian competed at the HPU VertCross Invitational on Friday where the Mountaineers produced multiple personal bests and finished in second by a mere two points. Tristin Van Ord (Chapel Hill, N.C./ Chapel Hill) was the first Black and Gold jersey to cross the finish line as the second-fastest collegian with a time of 21:18.09. Sophomore Emily Fedders (Beckley, W.V./ Woodrow Wilson) had a tremendous race on Friday, finishing inside the top-15 in her first 6k race ever. Rounding out App’s top five ladies were Phylissa Greeley (Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Catholic) in 22nd, Natalie Kile (Canton, Ga./Blessed Trinity Catholic) in 23rd and Hana Ratcliffe (Durham, N.C./Durham School of the Arts) in 26th.


The Mountaineers will prepare for the 2016 Sun Belt Conference Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Oct. 29 in Dothan, Ala. The whistle to kickoff the women’s 5k race will blow at 11 a.m.


The North Carolina High School Athletic Association Board of Directors and Commissioner Que Tucker have made the difficult decision to move playoff dates following historic flooding in many parts of eastern North Carolina.


“The logistics of moving the fall championships dates, especially this close to the events are complex; however, we must do everything in our power to do what is best for our student-athletes in the state,” said Commissioner Que Tucker. “Keeping our young people safe as we try to minimize risk of injury must be paramount in our decisions.”


Among changes approved by the board, the weekly limitation in volleyball has been waived for teams in areas affected by Hurricane Matthew, however, the daily limitation has not been waived. Sunday practices and/or competition are still not permissible for any sport.


Below is a list of changes by sport.


Women’s Tennis –

Individual Regionals: October 21st-22nd (No Change)

Individual State Championships: October 28th-29th (No Change)


Dual-Team reporting deadline October 19th (changed from October 17th)

Seeding: October 24th

First Round: October 25th

Second Round: November 1st

Third Round: November 3rd

Regionals: November 9th

State Championships: November 12th (Changed from November 5th)


Volleyball – Prior to 6:00 am October 25th, teams affected by the hurricane are permitted to exceed the weekly limitations, but not the daily limitations.

Seeding: October 25th (moved from October 19th)

First Round: October 26th

Second Round: October 27th

Third Round: October 29th

Fourth Round: November 1st

Semifinals: November 3rd

State Championship: November 5th (No Change)


Men’s Soccer –

Seeding: November 3rd (moved from October 31st)

First Round: November 5th

Second Round: November 8th

Third Round: November 10th

Fourth Round: November 12th

Regionals: November 15th

State Championship: November 19th (No Change)


Football – Sites TBD

Seeding: November 12th (changed from November 5th)

First Round: November 18th

Second Round: November 25th

Third Round: December 2nd

Regionals: December 9th

State Championships: December 16th & 17th (changed from December 9th & 10th)


Women’s Golf – no changes; Regionals and State Championships as scheduled


Cross Country – no changes; Regionals and State Championships as scheduled

Appalachian State University women’s soccer came out of the gates on fire, but had to survive a second-half push from Georgia Southern to get the 3-2 victory on Sunday afternoon at Eagle Field.


“I’m very proud of the girls for getting the result on the road today,” head coach Sarah Strickland said. “Georgia Southern is a very good team and the parity of the Sun Belt has incredible this year so any team can win on any given day. It was a huge day for Jenn Bass as she scored the game winner after an amazing journey in our program.”


Strickland continued, “Every one of our girls has a story and they are all unique but for Jenn to overcome three ACL tears and another recent knee injury but persevere like she has is inspiring. Sharon Osterbind truly impacted the game today with an assist and a goal off the bench. Honestly the first half was incredible to watch and I’m so proud of the performance by so many of them. We look forward to this week and preparing for our final conference weekend at home.”


The Mountaineers (7-7-2, 2-4-2 Sun Belt) forced the issue offensively early, putting the Eagles (5-9-1, 2-6 Sun Belt) on their heels early. In the first half, App State outshot Georgia Southern 8-1, having a 6-1 advantage in corners as well.


Senior Jane Cline (Cornelius, N.C./Charlotte Catholic) gave Appalachian the early lead, when she took a rocket forward pass from Sharon Osterbind (Jacksonville, Ala./Jacksonville (UAB)) and turned to fire a low-roller passed the Eagle goalkeeper in the 25th minute.


Just three minutes later, Osterbind was on the receiving end of a dime from a Jackie Nieradka (Kernersville, N.C./East Forsyth) corner that she headed in.

Coming out of halftime, Appalachian had to withstand an rejuvenated Eagle team that had five shots in the second half.


Despite the high-energy, the Mountaineers were able to put the game out of reach with the eventual game-winner from senior Jenn Bass (Burlington, N.C./Williams (Clemson)) who took a cross from redshirt sophomore Erin Settle (Mooresville, N.C./Mooresville) and lasered it to the upper-left corner.

Georgia Southern would find the back of the net as they refused to go away quietly with all Sun Belt teams battling hard to be a part of the top 8 teams that qualify for the tournament.


Rachel Hoekstra got a one-on-one opportunity in the 67th minute and was able to drive one home high, while Sarah Price made a move on the outside and was able to find the upright corner of the net, just out of reach of Appalachian’s junior goalkeeper Sam Steyl (Charlotte, N.C./Ardrey Kell).

Steyl played the entire 90 for App State and made three saves on the day.


Appalachian State once again exhibited a team-effort on the offensive end of the field, a staple of its wins this season. With the tournament on the line, the Mountaineers were able to find that rhythm again and will look to carry that through the final two games of the season after Sunday.


Cline led the team with four shots with two on goal, while Bass returned to the lineup after resting last week due to a lower-body injury to have two shots with one on goal.


Junior Kelly Flanders (Huntersville, N.C./Hopewell), Settle, senior Nieradka, redshirt sophomore Sarah Peatross (Winston-Salem, N.C./Mount Tabor), Osterbind, freshman Kristin Brown (Mooresville, N.C./Lake Norman) and freshman Maggie Hanusek (Cumming, Ga./Lambert) all managed one shot with Osterbind, Flanders, Brown and Hanusek having theirs on goal.


The Mountaineers return home to finish out the 2016 regular season when they host UL Lafayette on Friday, Oct. 21 at 7 p.m. App State then prepares to face first-ranked South Alabama in a rematch of the 2015 Sun Belt Tournament semifinals on Sunday, Oct. 23 at noon.

Appalachian State University volleyball was tripped up for the second-straight match against Coastal Carolina in a 3-1 (15-25, 25-22, 13-25, 13-25) loss on Sunday afternoon.

The Mountaineers (2-18, 0-7 Sun Belt) were led by senior Sloan Evans (San Antonio, Texas/Alamo Heights) who finished with a career-high 12 kills. Both Emma Longley (Raleigh, N.C./Cardinal Gibbons) and Melissa McMath (Lexington, N.C./Central Davidson) collected 11 kills each.

Offensively, Amanda Krahl (Pearland, Texas/St. Agnes Academy) finished with a team-leading 34 assists. On the defensive side of things, Kennedy Wilson (Avon, Ind./Avon) led with a team-high 16 digs, while Olivia Reed (Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz) finished 10.

Appalachian fell behind early in the opening set and trailed 11-5 before calling its first timeout. The Mountaineers would close to within five at 19-14, but the Chanticleers (15-4, 6-1 Sun Belt) would pull away for a 25-15 win.

In the second set, the Black and Gold would stay even with Coastal and with an 8-8 tie, the Mountaineers would use a 5-1 run to pull ahead 13-9 and force a timeout from the Chanticleers. After pushing its lead to as many as five points with a kill from Evans, Coastal Carolina would battle back to within just one at 21-20.

Back-to-back kills from Longley and Evans, followed by a Chanticleer attack error pushed Appalachian’s lead to 24-20 and the Apps would take the second set, 25-22.

Despite building momentum going into set three, the Mountaineers struggled in the third set and fell behind 18-7. The Mountaineers played the Chanticleers even for the rest of the set, but lost 25-13. The fourth set was almost identical to the third and the Mountaineers couldn’t escape a big hole - dropping the set and the match.

Appalachian will return to the court on Friday, Oct. 21 when they host UL Monroe at 6:30 p.m. inside the Holmes Center.

Sunday, 16 October 2016 10:21

Lenoir-Rhyne Men's Soccer Wins at Brevard

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The Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s Soccer Team (9-3-2, 5-2-1) remained red hot with a 1-0 South Atlantic Conference shutout victory over Brevard (5-7-1, 2-6) Saturday evening at the Moretz Sports – Athletic Complex.


Lenoir-Rhyne sophomore midfielder Emil Tansinda (Sale, ENGLAND) scored the lone goal of the match at the 39:14 mark of the first half as the Bears remained unbeaten – at 5-0-1 – in their last six matches.


Tansinda scored from about 30 yards out off a pass from sophomore midfielder Israel Ramirez (Newton, N.C.), who was credited with the assist. Tansinda now has three goals on the season.


The Bears also held an 18-12 edge in shots taken and moved into sole possession of third place in the South Atlantic Conference standings.


Lenoir-Rhyne junior goalkeeper Zach King (Altamonte Springs, Fla.) notched his sixth shutout of the year after making a pair of saves while Brevard’s Heath Turner (Kansas City, Mo.) suffered the setback in goal despite allowing just one score and stopping six shots.


Lenoir-Rhyne travels to Hartsville, S.C., to take on Coker in a South Atlantic Conference match on Wednesday at 7:00 p.m.

Sunday, 16 October 2016 10:19

Lenoir-Rhyne Women's Soccer Blanks Brevard

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The Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Soccer Team (9-3-2, 5-2-1) shut out Brevard (3-10, 0-8), 4-0, in a South Atlantic Conference match Saturday evening at the Moretz Sports – Athletic Complex.


Lenoir-Rhyne freshman midfielder Abigael McGarel (Morristown, Tenn.) scored two goals in the second half on penalty kicks and added an assist to lead the Bears to the win.


Lenoir-Rhyne freshman midfielder Aqsa Mushtaq (Bradford, ENGLAND) opened the scoring at the 14:03 mark of the first half when she finished off a cross in front of the net courtesy of senior forward Kendall Smith (Asheville, N.C.), who was credited with the assist.


After holding a 1-0 advantage at halftime, Lenoir-Rhyne broke the contest open with three goals in the second half started off by Smith’s team-leading sixth score of the year at the 53:00 mark.


McGarel rounded out the scoring with goals on penalty kicks at the 56:30 and 66:57 marks of the second half, respectively. McGarel now has four goals on the year.


Lenoir-Rhyne held a 21-5 advantage in shots taken while senior Andrea Leano (San Diego, Calif.) and junior Alayna Morris (Westminster, Md.) combined for the shutout in goal. Brevard’s goalkeeper, Laurel Neuzil (Loudon, Tenn.), suffered the loss despite making five saves on the day.


Lenoir-Rhyne hits the road again to take on Coker in a South Atlantic Conference match in Hartsville, S.C., on Wednesday beginning at 4:30 p.m.

Appalachian State University men’s soccer battled hard against first-ranked conference foe Hartwick, going to double overtime to hold them to a 0-0 draw on Saturday afternoon at Elmore Field.


“Really great team effort today versus a very good Hartwick team,” head coach Jason O’Keefe said. “I can see why they are the two-time defending champion. We bent a few times but never broke, which is what we have been doing now for our last eight games. We will recover, get back to Boone and get ready for Coastal Carolina on Wednesday. We hope everyone comes out to pack the Mack and continues to be that 12th man for the team as they’ve done all season.”


With the draw, the Mountaineers (4-5-3 1-0-1 Sun Belt) continue their hot streak of six-straight unbeaten matches and improve to 4-1-3 since their first win of the season on Sept. 13. Appalachian held the Hawks (7-1-3, 1-0-1 Sun Belt) scoreless for the first time this season en route to their third draw of the year.


Since the Sun Belt Conference reintroduced men’s soccer to the league, Appalachian remains one of only two conference teams to push Hartwick to non-victories. Georgia State defeated the Hawks last year and App State has tied them twice.


With his third-straight shutout, freshman goalkeeper and reigning Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Week Jake Agnew (Farmington, Minn./Farmington) faced 17 shots overall and made a career-high eight saves (doubling his previous career high) to remain unbeaten in his career as well, stretching his record to 3-0-3. The goalkeeper has played 310 minutes straight now without allowing a goal.


In the offensive third of the field, Appalachian put a huge amount of pressure on Hartwick’s goalkeeper from the very beginning. Freshman Graham Smalley (Kill Devil Hills, N.C./First Flight) led the team with three shots, while seniors Stephen Chapman (Greensboro, N.C./Northwest Guilford) and Ben Steen (Mooresville, N.C./Lake Norman) had two shots, with one of Steen's coming on goal.


Rounding out the attack effort, junior Cooper Coughlin (Suwanee, Ga./Lambert) had one shot on goal with senior Jordan Melia (Manchester, England/Rivington & Bolton) and sophomore Raheem Somersall (Basseterre, St. Kitts/Southern School of Energy and Sustainability)) having one shot total.


Overall in this 4-1-3 streak, the Mountaineers have carried strong second-half-of-the-season rhythm into the first two matches of conference. Appalachian has scored 10 goals since the win off six assists, totaling 102 shots (38 on goal – .373). The Black and Gold are also still outshooting opponents 102-78.


The Mountaineers will now return home to continue Sun Belt Conference play, hosting Coastal Carolina on Wednesday, Oct. 19. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at the Appalachian Soccer Stadium at the Ted Mackorell Soccer Complex.

The Wingate University Football Team (6-1, 2-1) rolled up a season-high 593 yards of total offense in downing Lenoir-Rhyne (2-5, 2-1), 49-6, Saturday afternoon in a South Atlantic Conference game at Irwin Belk Stadium.


Wingate’s Blake Hayes (Greenville, S.C.) rushed for a game-high 136 yards and four touchdowns while Domineke McNeill (Durham, N.C.) added 125 yards on the ground and a score as the Bulldogs finished with 346 yards rushing in the victory.


Lenoir-Rhyne was held to just 39 yards rushing and was kept out of the end zone in suffering its first league setback of the year.


Lenoir-Rhyne redshirt freshman quarterback Jarrod Kellar (Shinnston, W.Va.) passed for 103 yards while junior wide receiver Alec Philpott (Mill Spring, N.C.) added three catches for 63 yards in the losing effort.


Hayes powered the Bulldogs to a 35-6 halftime lead with three straight touchdown runs – three yards, 55 yards and one yard, respectively – while Moryah Johnson (Charlotte, N.C.) returned an interception 47 yards for a score late in the second quarter to put the contest away.


Lenoir-Rhyne senior placekicker Hunter Haire (Longwood, Fla.) kicked two field goals while senior defensive back Rodney Singleton (Hawthorne, Fla.) led all tacklers once again with 11 on the day. Senior defensive back C.J. Cody (Powder Springs, Ga.) and redshirt freshman defensive back Sherrod Williams (Edison, Ga.) both had interceptions for the Bears in the loss.


Lenoir-Rhyne returns home to face Mars Hill in a South Atlantic Conference game on Saturday at 2:00 p.m.

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