Appalachian State men's basketball freshman guard Justin Forrest (Decatur, Ga./Greenforest McCalep Christian Academy) had been named Co-Sun Belt Player of the Week.
Forrest earned the honor along with Frank Bartley from Louisiana. He also becomes the first Mountaineer to earn Sun Belt Player of the Week honors since the program joined the conference in 2014-15.
In two games last week against James Madison and Davidson, Forrest averaged 26.0 points on 16-of-29 (55.2 percent) shooting and a 9-of-17 (52.9 percent) mark on three-pointers, 2.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.0 steals in 34.0 minutes.
In a double overtime contest at James Madison on Wednesday, Forrest set a new career-high with 36 points on 11-of-20 (55.0 percent) shooting and a 7-of-12 (58.3 percent) clip from beyond the arc, to go along with a career-high tying four assists and a career-high tying two steals in 40 minutes.
Forrest made his first career start on Saturday against Davidson, finishing with 16 points on 5-of-9 (55.6 percent) shooting, to go along with four rebounds two assists and two steals.
This season, Forrest ranks second on the team in scoring at 17.2 ppg, ranks third on the team with 17 assists and is tied for third on the Mountaineers with seven steals.
The Catawba Valley Community College volleyball program announced the additions of Emma Clark and Macy Pope to its 2018 recruiting class on Monday.
CVCC head volleyball coach Shannon Hudson is excited that both Clark and Pope are joining her squad.
“Both players come from winning programs with great coaches and have the passion and drive to be successful on the court and in the classroom,” Hudson said.
Pope, a senior setter at West Iredell High School, tallied a team-high 922 assists (10.7 per set) this past season for the Warriors, helping them finish their season 27-4 overall and 14-0 in Northwestern Foothills conference play.
Pope added 218 digs and 33 blocks defensively this past season and also registered 30 aces and 56 kills on the attack for a West Iredell volleyball team that reached the 2A state championship game in Raleigh, N.C.
“Macy brings energy, athleticism and confidence to the setter position,” Hudson said. “She is a team player who will do whatever it takes to better the ball for her hitters.”
Clark, a 6-foot middle hitter, recorded a team-best 132 blocks (37 solo) at Watauga High School, which was 22-3 overall this past season and 14-0 in Northwestern 3A/4A play. Clark also made 185 kills for the Pioneers, who won their second-straight conference championship and reached the third round of the 3A playoffs.
“We are thrilled to add Emma to our lineup for next fall,” Hudson said. “Her size, court awareness and experience are vital attributes for running a successful offense, and I am looking for Emma to contribute right away.”
Clark and Pope join an already stacked 2018 Red Hawks recruiting class, which includes Alexander Central's Kelsea DeJarnette and Chesney Millsaps, Fred T. Foard's Jayln Rice, First Assembly Christian's Anna Clarke, St. Stephens' Madison Bolch and West Stokes' Rachel Delcamp and Abigail Gordon.
Appalachian State University volleyball head coach Matt Ginipro has announced the addition of six student-athletes for the 2018 season on Monday.
Daryn Armstrong (Cary, N.C./Panther Creek), Amya Giger (Arden, N.C./Carolina Day), Anna Kincaid (Jamestown, N.C./Southwest Guilford), Jana Owens (Overland Park, Kan.), Holli Smith (Raleigh, N.C./Broughton) and Victoria Wilform (Rock Hill, S.C./Northwestern) all will join the program.
"We are really happy with our 2018 class. All six players make us a better program and are just great people who will be amazing ambassadors for Appalachian State," said Ginipro. "It's a great mix of physical middles, athletic outsides, a very talented setter and a strong addition to our ball control group. They, and their families, fit right in with the AppVB Family and are excited to get their careers started."
6-0 • Middle-Hitter
Cary, N.C. • Panther Creek
Daryn Armstrong joins the Mountaineers from Cary, N.C. and won two letters as a member of the volleyball team at Panther Creek High School. In her career, she totaled a hitting percentage of .469 to go along with 75 blocks. She also earned the Most Improved Award in both 2015 and 2016 and helped her team to a co-conference title in 2016.
Ginipro's Comments: "Daryn is a strong blocker and will be another physical middle hitter for us. She works hard on the court and I know she'll get better each day with her work ethic."
6-0 • Middle Blocker
Arden, N.C. • Carolina Day
Amya Giger was a two-time all-conference honoree at Carolina Day high school, as a sophomore and a senior. As a junior, she was named to the North Carolina Down Under All-State Volleyball Team. In addition, she won the Coaches Award in 2015 and was named Team MVP in 2017.
Ginipro's Comments: "Amya can play both middle and on a pin for us. She's a pretty incredible athlete and very quick off the ground which makes her a dangerous attacker. Amya is going to allow us to open up some more offensive opportunities."
6-1 • Middle Hitter
Jamestown, N.C. • Southwest Guilford
Anna Kincaid won four letters as a member of the volleyball team at Southwest Guilford High School. She was a three-time All-Conference honoree and was voted Team MVP and Best Offensive Player. During her senior season, she tallied 325 kills, 153 digs and 97 aces. She also set a school record with 30 kills in a single match.
Ginipro's Comments: "Anna is a big, physical middle hitter who has experience taking swings on the outside as well. We have been working to get bigger at the net and she fits that mold. With us graduating Cass and Court, getting more depth in the middle hitter position was a priority and we're glad Anna will be in our gym."
5-9 • Setter
Overland Park, Kan. • Blue Valley West
Jana Owens joins the Mountaineers from Blue Valley West High School in Kansas. She earned First Team All-Conference honors as a junior and a senior and was also named to the 6A State Tournament Team as a senior. She helped her team earn back-to-back state runner up finishes as a junior and a senior and was also voted team captain during her senior season, where she totaled 778 assists.
Ginipro's Comments: "Jana was the first addition to our 2018 class back during her sophomore year in high school. She's a very talented setter who will come in and push for court time right away with the skill set she already has."
5-6 • Defensive Specialist
Raleigh, N.C. • Broughton
Holli Smith earned three letters in volleyball at Broughton High School in Raleigh, N.C. She was named Honorable Mention All-Conference during her senior year. She also was award the 4-Star Coaches Award in 2017.
Ginipro's Comments: "I've known Holli since I arrived in Boone, and connected with Traci as an alum of the program, and have been very impressed with the player she has become. She's a great addition to our strong ball control group and it's awesome that she is joining us this spring after graduating high school early."
5-8 • Left Side
Rock Hill, S.C. • Northwestern
Victoria Wilform earned three letters at Northwestern High School in Rock Hill, S.C. and was named Team MVP as a junior and a senior. She was named Honorable Mention All-Area as a junior and earned All-Region honors as a senior. In addition, Wilform earned All-Tournament honors in the Best of the Carolinas and Dorman Invitational as a junior and All-Tournament accolades at the CJV Best of the Carolinas and Nation Ford Invitational as a senior.
Ginipro's Comments: "Vic is a great addition to our left side attacking group. She's a 6-rotation player with a good jump and armswing. She elevates and attacks at a high point which will help us score on the outside."
Laken Cook and Thomas Flitz posted back-to-back victories for Appalachian State’s young wrestling team, but North Carolina recorded a 30-6 home win Sunday afternoon in Carmichael Arena.
App State (2-1) faced a strong UNC team that was 0-2 with losses to No. 3 Oklahoma State and No. 20 Purdue. The Mountaineers and Tar Heels both received votes in the latest USA Today/NWCA Division I Wrestling Coaches Poll.
A sophomore, Cook picked up the first win for App State by claiming a 9-8 decision against Kennedy Monday at 157 pounds. Cook used a last-minute takedown to tie the match, and he built up a two-minute advantage in riding time while preventing Monday from executing an escape in the final 30 seconds.
Flitz, a redshirt freshman, earned a 10-8 decision against Clay Lautt at 165 pounds. They were tied at 8-all before Flitz earned one point for an escape in the final 40 seconds and added another point thanks to his advantage in riding time.
The Mountaineers return to action Saturday at Ohio and are back in Varsity Gym to face No. 6 N.C. State on Dec. 10.
Wrestling tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by calling the Appalachian State ticket office at 828-262-2079 or by going online to the App State Ticket Central link.
North Carolina 30, App State 6
125: Dalton Macri (UNC) def. De'Andre Swinson (APP), 12-3 maj. dec.
133: Zach Sherman (UNC) def. Codi Russell (APP), 6-3 dec.
141: A.C. Headlee (UNC) def. Irvin Enriquez (APP), 18-6 maj. dec.
149: Troy Heilmann (UNC) def. Gavin Londoff (APP), 6-1 dec.
157: Laken Cook (APP) def. Kennedy Monday (UNC), 9-8 dec.
165: Thomas Flitz (APP) def. Clay Lautt (UNC), 10-8 dec.
174: Ethan Ramos (UNC) def. Forrest Przybysz (APP), 12-2 maj. dec.
184: Chip Ness (UNC) def. Alan Clothier (APP), 5-3 dec.
197: Danny Chaid (UNC) def. Randall Diabe (APP) fall, 4:30
285: Cory Daniel (UNC) def. Cary Miller (APP), 8-5 dec.
App State women's basketball (1-5) can breathe a little easier following a team-centric performance that led to a 76-70 triumph at College of Charleston (1-5) on Sunday afternoon at TD Arena.
The Mountaineers snapped a six-game skid dating back to last season while capturing their first win of the campaign. Tierra Wilson (Winston-Salem, N.C./R.J. Reynolds) registered a personal-high 23 points and facilitated her way to career-high six assists. Wilson had her best stat of the afternoon with zero turnovers in her best performance of the season playing the entire 40 minutes. Bayley Plummer (Thomasville, N.C./East Davidson) battled through foul trouble to collect her second double-double of the season with a career-high 14 points and 11 rebounds. She also dished out a personal-best of four assists.
Nicola Mathews (Adelaide, Australia/College of Central Florida) chipped in with 12 points on four 3-pointers, a Black and Gold-high this season. Armani Hampton (Winston-Salem, N.C./Atkins) rounded out the leading scorers with nine points and a career-best 12 rebounds.
App State moved the ball exceptionally well with 21 assists on 25 field goals while eight of 10 players scored, leading to a season-high 76 points. The Mountaineers would outscore the Cougars 30-6 from 3-point land off a season-best 10 3-pointers.
The Mountaineers got the start they needed jumping out to an 8-2 lead in the first 3:15 of the contest after Wilson found Lainey Gosnell (Habersham, Central/Demorest, Ga.) for a 3-pointer on the right wing. College of Charleston would score 12 of the next 20 points to cut the App State lead to two,16-14 going into the second frame.
After the Cougars had tied up the game, 16-16, within the first 16 seconds of the second period, Wilson and Plummer scored all eight points during an 8-1 surge over a 2:12 span to give App a 25-17 lead. App State would never relinquish its lead despite the hosts pulling to within single digits, 31-28, near the end of the first half. Plummer started another run that led to seven straight points including a Mathews trey and a tip-in at the buzzer from Plummer to balloon the App State lead to 10, 38-28. Appalachian did a great job of protecting the ball with just six turnovers.
The Mountaineers never trailed by less than eight points in the third quarter, eventually pushing the advantage to as much as 14, 52-38, after Hampton hit a pair at the free throw line.
After the Black and Gold went into the fourth period with an 11-point lead, 59-48, the Cougars wouldn't make things easy for the Apps, as they closed to within seven points, 61-54. LaPresha Stanley (Rockledge, Fla./Rockledge) came up with a timely 3-point play that extended the lead back to 10, 64-54. CofC continued to claw its way back in the final 3:49 of the contest, pulling to within as close as five points, 64-59. But Mathews had other plans as she drained trifectas on back-to-back possessions to extend the lead to three, 70-61.
CofC cut the deficit to six with 27 seconds left before Kaila Craven (Asheboro, N.C./Southwestern Randolph) went 4-for-4 from the line in 26 seconds to keep the Cougars at bay en route to the win. App State converted 14 of 19 at the line, which by far was the best of the season at 73.7 percent.
App State forced 18 CofC Turnovers into a season-high 15 points off the miscues. The rebounding effort was stellar with a season-best 21 on the offensive end, leading 17 second-chance points.
The Mountaineers will look to make it two in a row on Friday in the annual Education Day Game against UAB at noon inside the Holmes Center.
"Today was a team effort on both ends of the court. We had huge contributions from everyone, and I am most proud of our effort on the boards. Our mantra this season has been THE TEAM, and it really shows when our team has 21 assists on 26 field goals." - Head Coach Angel Elderkin
- Wilson is the second freshman this season to score at least 20 points in a game (Lainey Gosnell - 20 points; 11/19 vs. Davidson)
- The 10 3-pointers are the most since App hit 10 from beyond the arc against Norfolk State during the 2012-13 season
- Appalachian scored a season-high 1.041 points per possession in the win
- The Mountaineers' 17 second-chance points are a season high
- The 38 minutes played by Hampton is a career-high, while Mathews played a personal-high 31 minutes in an App State uniform
Facing one of the top scoring teams in the country, Appalachian State men's basketball set the tone early and never trailed en route to a 78-62 win over Davidson on Saturday evening in the Holmes Center.
The Wildcats (2-2) entered the game averaging 95.3 points per game, which was sixth highest in the country. In addition, Davidson also came into the contest leading the nation with an average of 17.3 made three-pointers per game.
Appalachian State (4-3) was up to the task, limiting the Wildcats to just 62 points and 9-of-33 (27.3 percent) shooting from beyond the arc.
Junior Ronshad Shabazz (Raleigh, N.C./Huntington Prep) paced a balanced Mountaineer attack that saw all five starters score at least nine points, with a game-high 18 points to go along with four assists.
Senior Griffin Kinney (Delaware, Ohio/Fork Union Military Academy) finished with a season-high tying 16 points on 6-of-10 (60.0 percent) shooting and a season-best nine rebounds. In his first career start, freshman Justin Forrest (Decatur, Ga./Greenforest McCalep Christian Academy) added 16 points on 5-of-9 (55.6 percent) shooting, four rebounds and two steals.
Junior Tyrell Johnson (Atlanta, Ga./Stephenson) chipped in with nine points, four rebounds, a career-high four assists and a season-best three blocks. Sophomore Isaac Johnson (Charlotte, N.C./Providence Day) added nine points to go along with nine rebounds.
App State set the tone from the opening tip, limiting Davidson to just one made field goal out of their first 15 attempts to build an early 12-2 lead.
The Wildcats would close the gap to four points at 17-13, before the Black and Gold answered with a 12-4 run, capped a Shabazz trey, to take a 29-17 edge with 3:06 left in the first half. The Apps took a 36-23 lead into the break.
Appalachian opened the second half by scoring the first four points, before Davidson responded with a 10-0 run to trim the Mountaineer lead to 41-35 with 15:55 to play.
The Wildcats would pull to within four points at 46-42, but a quick 7-0 spurt from App State allowed them to open a 53-42 advantage with 11:23 remaining.
Davidson was unable to trim the deficit under double digits the rest of the way, as the Mountaineers built as large of a lead as 18 points.
App State shot 49.1 percent (27-of-55) from the field, while the Wildcats shot 40.0 percent (26-of-65). In addition, the Mountaineers held a 17-1 scoring advantage at the free throw line, limiting Davidson to just four free throw attempts in the contest.
The Mountaineers will play next at 7 p.m. on Tuesday on the road at VCU.
The Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s Basketball Team (1-4) earned its first victory of the season with a 71-60 triumph over Limestone (3-3) Saturday afternoon at Shuford Memorial Gymnasium.
Lenoir-Rhyne was led by junior guard Djibril Diallo (Conakry, GUINEA) with 18 points and redshirt freshman guard Darius Simmons (Raleigh, N.C.) added 15 points off the bench in the victory. Four players finished in double figures for Lenoir-Rhyne as well.
Lenoir-Rhyne ended the game on a 13-1 run over the final 2:18 of the contest and connected on a dozen free throws in the second half.
The Saints were led by Kenny Hairston (Charlotte, N.C.) with 15 points but were held 24 points under the season scoring average. Limestone came into the game averaging over 84 points per game.
Lenoir-Rhyne snaps a nine-game losing streak dating back to last season when the Bears suffered setbacks in their final five contests.
Lenoir-Rhyne next travels to Hartsville, S.C., to take on Coker on Wednesday at 8:00 p.m., in a South Atlantic Conference game.
The Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Basketball Team (3-3) scored its most points in 11 years with a 98-80 victory over Lees-McRae (1-3) Saturday afternoon in a non-conference regional contest at Shuford Memorial Gymnasium.
Lenoir-Rhyne junior guard Madi Suddreth, an Alexander Central grad, was the catalyst for the Bears, scoring a career-high 35 points in addition to 10 rebounds and five assists. Suddreth scored 18 points in the first quarter.
Senior guard Cassidy Joyner (Dobson, N.C.) finished with 17 points and six rebounds as well for the Bears, who shot 50 percent (38-of-76) for the game.
The Bears’ 98 points were a season-high and the most points scored by Lenoir-Rhyne since a 98-89 triumph over Ashland during the 2006-07 campaign.
Lenoir-Rhyne led by 29 points at halftime – 52-23 – but Lees-McRae kept the game relatively close thanks to its three-point prowess. The Bobcats hit 16 three-pointers and were led by Karli Mason (Monroe, N.C.) with eight treys and 24 points.
Lenoir-Rhyne steps back into South Atlantic Conference play on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m., to face Coker in Hartsville, S.C.
Appalachian State took care of business Saturday in its first-place showdown. A conference championship will be at stake next weekend.
Capitalizing on big third-quarter plays from captains Jalin Moore and A.J. Howard, App State gained the separation it needed to claim a 31-10 road victory against Georgia State.
The Mountaineers and Panthers were two of four teams that began the week as part of a first-place tie in the Sun Belt Conference, and App State (7-4, 6-1) can clinch at least a share of a second straight league title by winning its Dec. 2 finale against Louisiana in Kidd Brewer Stadium.
Moore rushed for 239 yards with one touchdown in his return to the starting lineup, quarterback Taylor Lamb had a hand in three touchdowns and the Mountaineers' defense limited Georgia State (6-4, 5-2) to 292 total yards.
App State rushed for 323 yards as a team, topping the previous season high of 238 rushing yards allowed by Georgia State's defense, which entered Saturday ranked second in the Sun Belt by allowing only 129.9 per game. Tennessee State had that total in the 2017 opener at Georgia State Stadium, thanks to Treon Harris' 91 rushing yards that had served as the individual high against the Panthers' defense before Moore's timely performance.
Leading by three points at halftime, App State used the big plays from Moore and Howard to set up a pair of Lamb touchdown passes that pushed the Mountaineers ahead 24-7.
On the fourth play of the second half, Moore stayed patient before exploding through a hole on a 58-yard rush to the Georgia State 6. Lamb threw a touchdown pass to tight end Collin Reed after the next snap.
Georgia State advanced to its 45-yard line on the next drive before linebacker Anthony Flory applied heavy pressure to quarterback Conner Manning, whose deep pass was intercepted by Howard at the App State 34. Howard's 61-yard return to the Georgia State 5 preceded Lamb's 4-yard touchdown pass to receiver Ike Lewis, who scored for the eighth time in the last six games.
App State held a 10-7 halftime lead thanks to a 3-yard touchdown run from Moore and a 42-yard field goal from Chandler Staton, who is 6-for-6 this season. Georgia State converted a field goal with 4:46 remaining to cut its deficit to 24-10, and Lamb added a 14-yard touchdown run in the final minute.
Defensively, the Mountaineers limited star receiver Penny Hart to five catches for 61 yards with a long of 19. Flory, Eric Boggs and Devan Stringer had nine tackles apiece to lead App State's defense.
Appalachian State has a 26-5 record in conference play since joining the Sun Belt, including a 26-3 mark since starting 0-2 in 2014 and a 13-2 road record during that same stretch.
Head coach Scott Satterfield improved his record to 39-22, putting him in sole possession of fourth place on the career victories list at App State. Sparky Woods had a 38-19-2 record from 1984-88. The top three are Jerry Moore (215-87 from 1989-2012), E.C. Duggins (57-25-3 from 1947-50, 1952-55) and Jim Brakefield (47-48-4 from 1971-79).
App State junior running back Jalin Moore has four career games with at least 239 rushing yards. He had 244 yards against Idaho in 2015, 257 yards against Akron in 2016 and 241 yards against New Mexico State earlier this season. Entering the weekend, LSU’s Derrius Guice was the only other active FBS back with at least three games of 239 yards.
Moore’s 58-yard run in the third quarter was the longest rush of the season for App State and the third-longest rush of the junior back’s career. Moore had a 56-yard touchdown run against New Mexico State earlier this season. His longest career runs were efforts of 63 yards against New Mexico State and 61 yards against Texas State in 2016.
Senior quarterback Taylor Lamb moved into first place in school history in career pass attempts. He had 23 on Saturday to bring his total to 1,202. Armanti Edwards had 1,180 from 2006-09.
With five catches for 43 yards and one touchdown, Ike Lewis has caught 32 passes for 491 yards and eight touchdowns over the last six games. He had a 4-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter.
Senior safety A.J. Howard had a 61-yard interception return in the third quarter. It was App State’s longest interception return since Howard scored on a 71-yard return at Troy last season.
App State’s defense allowed 191 yards and 292 yards in back-to-back victories against Georgia Southern and Georgia State. Those teams rushed for 111 and 91 yards.
After rushing for 23 yards on a successful fake punt in App State’s last game, senior defensive end Caleb Fuller blocked a first-quarter punt Saturday. The Mountaineers’ last blocked punt came from Tucker Bell against Georgia Southern on Sept. 25, 2014.
Playing in his 40th career game, senior receiver Dante Jones made his second career start as part of a four-receiver set.
Defensive end Baer Hunter made offensive appearances at tight end and special teams in the first half.
Panthers advance to the Western Regional Finals (state semifinal game) hosting Shelby on Friday.
Junior Ronshad Shabazz (Raleigh, N.C./Huntington Prep) became the 32nd player in program history to reach 1,000 career points, but the Appalachian State men's basketball team dropped a 105-99 double overtime decision at James Madison on Wednesday.
Shabazz recorded his milestone point on a free throw at the 10:38 mark of the first half. He would finish the game with 22 points and a career-high tying five assists.
Freshman Justin Forrest (Decatur, Ga./Greenforest McCalep Christian Academy) poured in a career-high 36 points off the bench on 11-20 (55.0 percent) shooting from the field, including a 7-of-12 (58.3 percent) mark on three-pointers.
Senior Griffin Kinney (Delaware, Ohio/Fork Union Military Academy) had a season-high 16 points, all of which came in the second half. Sophomore Isaac Johnson (Charlotte, N.C./Providence Day) pulled down a career-best 16 rebounds.
The Mountaineers (3-3) found themselves ahead 76-63 with 6:43 left to play regulation after a free throw from Jake Wilson (Raleigh N.C./Millbrook). But JMU stormed back to tie the game at 82-82 and send the game into an extra session.
After the Dukes (2-4) built an 85-83 lead in the first overtime, Forrest would convert on a layup to tie the game at 85-85 with 3:13 remaining.
James Madison would score the next four points, before a layup from sophomore O'Showen Williams (Macon, Ga./Stratford Academy) brought Appalachian State within 89-87 with 1:12 to play.
Following a defensive stop, Forrest would drain two free throws with 39 seconds left to tie the game at 89-89. The Mountaineers would get another stop, but Shabazz's shot to win the game was no good, sending the game into a second overtime.
After the Dukes scored the first point of the second overtime session, Forrest drained a step back trey to put App State up 92-90 with 3:36 to play. James Madison would tie the score on its next possession.
After a free throw from Forrest, JMU scored the next five points to build a 97-93 advantage with 1:38 remaining.
Shabazz would then drain two free throws, but Joey McLean of James Madison answered with a bucket to make the score 99-95.
Following a Appalachian turnover, McLean would convert on a layup, before Forrest came right back with a hoop to trim the Dukes lead to 101-97 with 21 seconds left in the second overtime.
From there, the Dukes would knock down four free throws in the closing seconds to walk away with the victory.
JMU came out of the gate strong, scoring the first seven points of the game to force an early App State timeout. The Mountaineers answered right back with a 9-2 spurt to knot 9-9 at the 14:29 mark.
The Black and Gold would build a 23-16 lead thanks to a 11-2 run, but the Dukes came right back with seven straight points to tie the score at 23-23 with 8:39 remaining in the opening frame.
Appalachian answered back with the next five points and held the lead for the rest of the half, taking a 47-41 edge into the break.
Stuckey Mosley led James Madison with 32 points, while Matt Lewis scored 26 points off the bench. McLean added 22 points and DeVelle Phillips tallied a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
The Mountaineers will return to action on Saturday evening, as they host Davidson at 7 p.m. at the Holmes Center.
Lenoir-Rhyne University Head Men’s Tennis Coach Tom Rees announced the addition of three student-athletes – Lewis Scott, Rhodri Atkinson and Mauricio Hernandez – for the 2018-19 season.
Scott, a native of Newcastle, ENGLAND, is Northumberland County’s top-ranked player for U16, U18 and the men’s division.
“Lewis is a perfect fit for college tennis. He has incredible drive and enthusiasm for the game and is a proven winner at the regional and national level in England,” said Rees.
Atkinson, a native of Gloucester, ENGLAND, has won seven Gloucestershire County Championships and helped his high school team to fifth-place and eighth-place national finishes. His career high ranking is No. 41 in the United Kingdom U14 age group. Atkinson trains at the Montague Academy and competed on the ITF Junior and British Men’s Tours.
“Rhodri (Atkinson) comes to us highly recommended by some of the best United Kingdom coaches,” said Rees. “He has a strong work ethic and excels in a team tournament.”
Hernandez, a native of Monterrey, MEXICO, is a national singles finalist and doubles champions in U16s. Hernandez, who was also ranked as high as No. 2 in Mexico, is an ITF G4 Doubles Finalist in 2016 and whose highest ITF Ranking is 1100.
“Mauricio (Hernandez) will be impactful for the team right away in singles and in doubles,” said Rees. “His game style will suit the United States hard courts well, and I expect him to be able to draw on his international playing experience to get to the next level in college tennis at Lenoir-Rhyne.”
Lenoir-Rhyne will open the season against UNC Asheville in an exhibition on Saturday, January 20, in Asheville, N.C., beginning at 3:00 p.m. The Bears’ first home contest will take place on Thursday, February 1, against Young Harris beginning at 1:00 p.m. All home matches in the spring for Lenoir-Rhyne will take place at YMCA of Catawba Valley.
Appalachian State senior Tee Sims has made the final watch list for the 2017 Hendricks Award, which goes to the nation's top defensive end.
Sims' 9.5 sacks this season rank seventh nationally and second in the Sun Belt Conference. His sacks have caused quarterbacks to lose 78 yards, a total that led the country going into App State's open week. The Mountaineers (6-4, 5-1) play at Georgia State on Saturday.
Sims also has 41 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss, two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble this year. He has 16.5 sacks and 25.5 tackles for loss through 22 games over the last two seasons.
The award is named for former Miami defender Ted Hendricks, the first three-time All-American. The four to six players with the most votes will appear on the final ballot, and a winner will be revealed Dec. 6.
Sims is one of two Sun Belt players among 27 overall on the final watch list.
2002 - Terrell Suggs (Arizona State)
2003 - David Pollack (Georgia)
2004 – David Pollack (Georgia)
2005 - Elvis Dumervil (Louisville)
2006 - LaMarr Woodley (Michigan)
2007 - Chris Long (Virginia)
2008 - Brian Orakpo (Texas)
2009 - Jerry Hughes (TCU)
2010 – Da'Quan Bowers (Clemson)
2011 – Whitney Mercilus (Iliinois)
2012 – Jadeveon Clowney (South Carolina)
2013 – Jackson Jeffcoat (Texas)
2014 – Nate Orchard (Utah)
2015 – Carl Nassib (Penn State)
2016 – Jonathan Allen (Alabama)
Appalachian State women's basketball head coach Angel Elderkin and the coaching staff is excited to announce the signing of three future Mountaineers to the 2017-18 signing class.
App State signs the trio of Brooke Bigott, Haile McDonald and A'Lea Gilbert. All three are eligible beginning in 2018-2019 and will look to contribute immediately.
"It is with great excitement that we welcome our three signees to our Appalachian State program," coach Elderkin stated. "These young women are not only great players; they're incredible people who come from great families. During our recruiting process, it was important for us to not only identify talent but it was equally important to evaluate character. They fit in with our core values, and most of all believe in our vision for our program. I expect them to come in and have an immediate impact on our program."
Brooke Bigott | 5'10 | Point Guard | Katy, Texas | Seven Lakes High School
A multi-faceted point guard that can do it all, the 2018 signee has enjoyed copious amounts of success on and off the court. Going into her senior season, she improved her numbers the previous three seasons including an impressive stat line her junior campaign where she turned in 17 points, 8.5 rebounds and 8.5 assists per game while shooting 52 percent from beyond the arc and 74 percent from the line. Bigott has helped Seven Lakes capture three district and area championships en route to reaching the regional quarterfinals last season. She was named all-conference and all-division her first three seasons. That's not all as she landed on the all-tournament team at the College Station Nike Tournament three straight years, and was named to the Houston Chronicle's All-Greater Houston Area Team. The Texas native was recognized by Vype Magazine as a member of the All-Texas squad and was awarded the conference's Most Valuable Player Award. During her junior year, she was a Texas Girl's Association All-Star as well as putting work in the classroom, as she was all-district academic and all-regional academic. Her athleticism went beyond the court with four letters in track and field, including a regional qualifying appearance her junior year Bigott played her travel ball under her father, Scott Bigott, where her team collected a silver championship at the Adidas Gauntlet Tournament while recording a Premier Basketball title an unprecedented 10 times. Her numbers during travel ball were even more staggering, averaging a triple-double with 21 points, 12 rebounds, 11 assists and four steals per contest. She also shot 56 percent from 3-point land and 82 percent from the charity stripe. Born on Jan. 11, 2000, Bigott is the daughter of Scott and Tammy Bigott. She has two siblings, Brittany and Bradeon. She comes from a family with a rich basketball history. Her father played basketball and ran track at Houston Baptist University where he was a conference champion and played in the NCAA Tournament. Her grandfather, Wilbert, is a member of the Hall of Fame at Houston where he played basketball for the Cougars before playing professionally overseas, and her uncle, Kevin, was part of the national championship squad at Pace University. Bigott will major in Kinesiology when she arrives in Boone. Her hobbies include working out, Netflix, skiing and going to the beach.
Elderkin on Bigott
"Brooke is a proven winner and comes to us from a tremendous high school program. She has great ball-handling ability, is a natural scorer and has great vision in the full court. It was important for us to bring her into our program. Not only is Brooke an "A" in talent, but she is also an "A" in mindset.
Haile McDonald | 6'0 | Power Forward | Winchester, Va. | Millbrook High School
A player that has put in a successful high school career under the tutelage of Erick Green, McDonald was named All-Conference 21 four-straight years while being named Group 4A All-State her junior season. She posted substantial numbers her junior campaign in which she averaged 14.7 points, 9.8 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.4 steals and 1.4 blocks per game en route to helping Middlebrook earn a stellar 28-2 mark and an appearance in the 4A state semifinals. She was awarded a sportsmanship award and named the team's Most Valuable Player. Also, she is a part of the 1,000-point club at Middlebrook. Last season was her best yet where she was named the Winchester Star All-Area Girls' Basketball Player of the Year, 4A West Region Girls' Basketball Player of the Year and the Conference 21 West Player of the Year. Born on Dec. 21, 1999, McDonald is the daughter of Easton and Julissa McDonald. She has two sisters, Leah and Elizabeth. Her hobbies include playing basketball. When she arrives at campus, she intends to major in criminal justice.
Elderkin on McDonald
"Haile is a special kid, and I learned early in the recruiting process about her desire to attend Appalachian State and be a part of what we are building as a program. She is a competitor and has a constant commitment to getting better. Her versatility will allow us to stretch the floor as well as expose mismatches in the paint. Her passion for the game shines through her and will be contagious in our program."
A'Lea Gilbert | 5'10 | Power Forward | Charlotte, N.C. | South Meck High School
An all-around athlete that has a nose for the ball, Gilbert plays under head coach Cristie Mitchell at South Meck where she has posted career averages of 11.7 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game. Gilbert was named All-South Meck Conference and all-district her sophomore and junior seasons. Gilbert has scored in double figures in 48 of 78 career games including a career-high 36 points on 15-for-22 shooting her sophomore campaign. She put up her best numbers her sophomore year averaging 15.9 points and 9.4 rebounds per contest. The North Carolina native was named Most Valuable Player her junior season and Rookie of the Year in her debut year. Born on Aug. 8, 2000, Gilbert is the daughter of Sean and Nicole Gilbert. She has three older siblings, Deshaun, Alexus, and Zachaeuss. She intends to major in business and marketing. Her hobbies include singing, swimming and traveling.
Elderkin on Gilbert
"It's important for us to continue to sign North Carolina talent, and we are excited about A'Lea. Her natural ability to rebound the basketball separated her in the recruiting process. She is another player that will provide versatility in our system with her skill set. A'Lea comes from an athletic family and understands the competitiveness and relentless work it takes to be successful."