Sports (698)

Monday, 03 December 2018 03:39

L-R's Queen Competes at National Championship

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Junior Jacob Queen wrapped up his competition at the 2018 USA Swimming Winter National Championship Saturday, December 1.

Queen raced in the time trials of the 200-meter individual medley (2:10.009) on Thursday and 100-meter breaststroke (1:05.25) on Saturday. Queen swam his only individual race of the week, the 100-meter breaststroke, on Friday. He fared well against his tough competition, coming in 28th place with a time of 1:04.70. His time was good enough to place him 17th among Americans in the event.

Next up, Lenoir-Rhyne hosts Barton College for senior day on Saturday, January 5, 2019.

Monday, 03 December 2018 02:34

L-R Football Season Ends at Super Regional Finals

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The Lenoir-Rhyne Football team saw its outstanding 2018 campaign come to an end at the hands of high-powered Valdosta St. on Saturday afternoon. The Bears ran into the most potent offense in the nation and couldn't keep up, falling in the NCAA Regional Final, 62-21.

Valdosta St. sprinted ahead early and never looked back. The Blazers scored the first 27 points of the game and led 34-7 going into the half.

In his final game with the Bears, WR T.J. Smith was outstanding once again. The speedy wideout took two of his three catches to the end zone and finished with 81 yards and an average of 27 yards per catch.

Grayson Willingham threw a pair of touchdown passes and finishes with 26 on the year. Willingham, who despite missing a pair of games, completely destroyed the previous record for touchdown passes in a season which had stood at 18 prior to this season.

Ameen Stevens led a rushing attack that was held to just 137 yards with his 10 carries for 56 yards.

Harlon Hill Award finalist Rogan Wells threw for 209 yards and a pair of touchdowns and added seven carries for 46 yards and a TD for VSU. The Blazers rushed for five touchdowns and gained 382 yards on the ground.

The Bears tasted defeat for the first time since falling at West Alabama on August 31, snapping a 12-game winning streak.

LR's run to the NCAA Quarterfinal marks the second-best NCAA postseason finish in program history. The Bears were the national runners up in 2013.

The Blazers broke the Gulf South Conference record for most points in a season with 649. Additionally, the GSC will send a team to the NCAA Semifinals for the 15th time in the last 17 years.

Monday, 03 December 2018 02:18

App State Football Wins Sun Belt Championship

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The trophy presentation included a stormed field, colorful beads and even a championship belt.

Appalachian State's post-title celebration in rainy Kidd Brewer Stadium had a touch of Mardi Gras — mountain style.

Hosting the first Sun Belt Conference Championship Game, App State won 30-19 against Louisiana to claim its third straight league title and earn an automatic bid to the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl on Dec. 15.

Appalachian sophomore Darrynton Evans surpassed 1,000 rushing yards on the season during a belt-hoisting, MVP-winning performance in which his 218 all-purpose yards included 111 rushing yards and a 97-yard kickoff return.

Sophomore quarterback Zac Thomas had two rushing touchdowns of at least 25 yards, and the Mountaineers (10-2) allowed just one touchdown while forcing the Ragin' Cajuns (7-6) to kick four field goals. All three of Chandler Staton's second-half field goals for App State exceeded 40 yards, including a 43-yarder that pushed the lead to 11 points with 2:09 remaining, and the Mountaineers could begin to celebrate when Clifton Duck broke up a fourth-down pass with 1:23 left.

Students rushed the field in Kidd Brewer Stadium after senior Zeb Speir, who arrived as a walk-on, took the final snap and embraced classmate Brad Absher.

"Our guys play for each other, maybe better than anybody in the country," App State head coach Scott Satterfield said.

App State was clinging to a 20-16 lead early in the fourth quarter when linebacker Anthony Flory's pressure set up Tae Hayes' interception on a deep throw, and Hayes returned the ball 32 yards to the Louisiana 44. Stopped on an earlier fourth-and-short play, the Mountaineers faced fourth-and-inches from the Louisiana 35 when Thomas faked a handoff to Evans and scored his 10th rushing touchdown of the season.

Louisiana marched 60 yards and, after safety Austin Exford stopped a third-and-goal run from the 3 for a loss of 4 yards, Kyle Pfau made a 24-yard field goal with 6:01 remaining. Holding an eight-point lead, Thomas started the next series by spinning away from pressure and hitting a wide-open back Marcus Williams Jr. in the left flat with a pass that ultimately gained 34 yards.

Williams gained 17 yards on three straight carries to put App State in field goal range, and Staton made his longest field goal of the season to cap the series.

After the Ragin' Cajuns kicked a 37-yard field goal to close the game's opening possession, Evans set up Williams' 1-yard touchdown with his return from the App State 2 to the Louisiana 1.

Evans' block created a running lane for Thomas on his 25-yard touchdown run that gave App State a 14-6 lead late in the second quarter, and Staton converted a pair of 42-yard field goals in the third quarter.

Staton's first kick pushed the lead to 17-6, and Louisiana quarterback Andre Nunez scored on 8-yard run not long after Raymond Calais returned the kickoff 61 yards. A fourth-and-1 stop by Louisiana's defense at the App State 34 set up another short field, leading to a 23-yard field goal that cut the Mountaineers' lead to 17-16, and Staton ended the third quarter with a field goal.

App State has posted double-digit wins for the third time in five FBS seasons.

Monday, 03 December 2018 02:17

App Men's Basketball Edged Out by East Carolina

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Ronshad Shabazz had a game-high 25 points and Justin Forrest added 24, but Appalachian State men's basketball suffered a tough 83-81 setback at ECU on Friday evening.

Shabazz finished 10-of-20 (50.0 percent) from the field and went a perfect 4-of-4 from the free throw line. He moved into seventh place on the all-time scoring list, passing Rick Howe (1,593) for eighth place and D.J. Thompson (1,599) for seventh in the contest.

Forrest shot 10-of-17 (58.8 percent) from the field and added two steals. He has scored over 20 points in three games this season.

Isaac Johnson tallied eight points and a season-high tying 13 rebounds.

A layup from Shabazz with 10:37 remaining in the game gave the Mountaineers (2-5) a 64-51 advantage. ECU (5-4) cut the lead to 65-59 with an 8-1 run, before a layup from Jake Wilson at the 7:26 mark of the second half put App State up 67-59.

The Pirates used a 7-0 spurt later in the half to cut the Black and Gold lead down to one point at 72-71 with 3:17 to play. App State countered with the next four points to open a 76-71 advantage with 2:48 remaining.

ECU trimmed the Mountaineer lead to one-point again, before a three-pointer from Shabazz with 1:45 to play gave the Mountaineers a 81-77 edge. From there, ECU scored six consecutive points to take an 83-81 lead in the closing seconds. App State held the final possession and a desperation three-pointer as the clock expired by Forrest was no good.

App State opened the game by scoring the first five points and built a 23-17 lead midway through the opening half. The Black and Gold took a 37-27 lead on a jumper by Shabazz, but ECU closed the half on a 13-5 run to cut the Mountaineer lead to 42-40 at the intermission.

The Black and Gold shot 52.5 percent (32-of-61) from the field, while ECU shot 46.7 percent (28-of-60). Jayden Gardner led the Pirates with 22 points and a game-high 11 rebounds, while Seth LeDay added 18 points and nine rebounds off the bench.

Appalachian State will return to Boone for two consecutive home games. The Mountaineers will host Howard on Tuesday at 7 p.m., followed by a 2 p.m. contest on Dec. 8 versus North Carolina Central.

Monday, 03 December 2018 02:14

App State Wrestling Drop Dual Match to Ohio

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A strong start and finish weren't enough Friday for Appalachian State Wrestling, which lost 25-16 to Ohio in Varsity Gym.

App State heavyweight Cary Miller opened the dual meet with a pin that was worth six points, and the Mountaineers (2-3) trailed 25-12 before Randall Diabe posted a 12-4 major decision at 197 pounds in the final match of the night. Along the way, Appalachian also got wins from redshirt freshman Jonathan Millner (7-4 decision at 149 pounds) and senior Michael Elliott (8-5 decision at 165 pounds).

Making his first career dual meet start, Elliott trailed 5-3 but had nearly a 90-second advantage in ride time entering the third period against Colt Yinger. Elliott used a quick escape from the down position to, for all intents and purposes, tie the match. A final-minute stalling penalty on Yinger gave Elliott a point before he added two more on a crowd-pleasing takedown with 20 seconds left.

The team leader in wins this season, counting tournament results, Elliott improved to 12-5.

Miller had a 7-0 lead before he recorded his second-period pin, but the Bobcats totaled 16 points in the next three matches with a major decision, a third-period pin from an Ohio wrestler who was trailing at the start of the momentum-changing sequence and then a first-period pin.

Millner ended the run with his win, as he entered the third period in an escape-ready down position with a 5-4 lead and more than two minutes in ride time. Elliott's victory cut into a 19-9 deficit.

App State's closest calls came in the next two matches. Thomas Flitz lost an 8-7 decision at 174 pounds to Joe Terry, who led 7-5 entering the third period, and Alan Clothier went into overtime with Hunter Yeargan before that match ended with a takedown by Yeargan in the Sudden Victory-1 period. In the final match, Diabe posted takedown after takedown in his victory against Nathan Hall.

The Mountaineers return to action Tuesday night at NC State and appear next in Varsity Gym against Oklahoma on Dec. 16.

Ohio 25, App State 16

HWT: Cary Miller (APP) def. Devin King (OHIO), fall, 4:32 (6-0)
125: Shakur Laney (OHIO) def. Andy Richard (APP), 19-5 maj. dec. (6-4)
133: Mario Guillen (OHIO) def. Codi Russell (APP), fall, 5:19 (6-10)
141: Kyran Hagan (OHIO) def. Irvin Enriquez (APP), fall, 2:50 (6-16)
149: Jonathan Millner (APP) def. Alec Hagan (OHO), 7-4 dec. (9-16)
157: Zac Carson (OHIO) def. Angel Najar (APP), 13-9 dec. (9-19)
165: Michael Elliott (APP) def. Colt Yinger (OHIO), 8-5 dec. (12-19)
174: Joe Terry (OHIO) def. Thomas Flitz (APP), 8-7 dec. (12-22)
184: Hunter Yeargan (OHIO) def. Alan Clothier APP), 3-1 dec., SV-1 (12-25)
197: Randall Diabe (APP) def. Nathan Hall (OHIO), 12-4 maj. dec. (16-25)

Hibriten: 34
Bandys: 15
Trojans season ends at 11-2. Panthers advance to the Western Regional Finals hosting Shelby on Friday.

Monday, 03 December 2018 02:11

L-R's Duggar and Poe Earn All-Region Honors

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A pair of Lenoir-Rhyne football players were named to the Division 2 Conference Commissioner’s Association (D2CCA) All-Super Region 2 team. Offensive linemen Jason Poe was named First Team All-Region, while Kyle Dugger was named to the Second Team.

Poe was the Jacobs Blocking Trophy recipient for the South Atlantic Conference and also earned First Team All-Conference accolades. Thanks in part to Poe’s run blocking, the Bears rank fifth in the nation in rushing offense. The Bears average 280 yards per game on the ground and rushed for a season-high 496 yards against Limestone on Oct. 13.

Dugger earned Second Team All-Region as a return specialist. Dugger, who ranks fourth in the nation in punt return average at 17.2 yards per return, was a First Team All-SAC return specialist as well as First Team Defensive Back. Dugger owns the single-season record for most punt return yardage with 534 yards and set a program record by returning two punts for a touchdown in a single game against Newberry on Oct. 6.

Lenoir-Rhyne leads the 2018-19 South Atlantic Conference Echols Athletic Excellence Award Standings after the conclusion of the 2018 SAC Fall Regular Season. The Bears won a pair of championships to garner 487.5 points as they took home the League title in football and share of the title in men's soccer. Lenoir-Rhyne also tied for second in women's soccer and took home third place in women's cross country.

After finishing third a year ago, the Bears are in search of the first Echols Cup in program history.

The Echols Athletic Excellence Award is presented annually to the member athletic department that earns the highest point total based on cumulative final standings in each of the Conference's 20 sports. Regular season finish is used in the sports of men's and women's soccer, volleyball, football, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's lacrosse, baseball and softball, while SAC Championship results are used for men's and women's cross country, men's and women's golf and men's and women's indoor and outdoor track.

In the Echols Athletic Excellence Award formula, the champion will always receive 100 points and last place will receive 10 points regardless of the number of schools that sponsor that championship sport. The points earned for all other place finishes will vary based on the number of schools that sponsor that particular sport.

2018-19 SAC Echols Athletic Excellence Award Standings – Fall 2018

Rank School               Points
1.      Lenoir-Rhyne       487.5
2.      Wingate                429.5
3.      Anderson              410
4.     Carson-Newman   391.5
5.     Queens                  386
6.     Lincoln Memorial   341.5
7.     Tusculum               314
8.     Catawba                263
9.     Mars Hill                184
10.   Newberry              144
11.   Coker                    93

Appalachian State University women's basketball (4-3) suffered a 95-64 decision to ETSU (1-8) on Thursday evening in Brooks Gymnasium.

Madi Story (Maiden, N.C./Bandys) was the lone Mountaineer who could get her offense going, scoring a team and season-high 20 points on 8-for-15 shooting from the field. It's the third straight game in double figures for the redshirt-senior and her 12th-career game with at least 20 points. Maya Calder (Landover, Md./National Christian Academy) led the team in rebounding with seven off the glass, while Ashley Polacek (Ottawa, Canada/UCF) posted a team-high in assists with five.

What was working for the Mountaineers over the four-game win streak, wasn't in their favor on Thursday. Appalachian allowed ETSU to shoot 56.2 percent from the floor, while it shot just 34.3 percent from the field and 13-of-32 from the charity stripe.

ETSU started the first 5:02 of the contest with a 10-3 run before five straight points by Bayley Plummer (Thomasville, N.C./East Davidson) and Tierra Wilson (Winston-Salem, N.C./RJ Reynolds) closed the gap to a possession, 10-8. After ETSU hit a field goal on the ensuing trip on offense, Story hit her only trifecta to bring the lead to one, 12-11.

However, ETSU ended the final 3:18 of the frame with a 16-4 surge, hitting six of its next 10 shots to go into the second period with a 28-15 lead. App started the second quarter 7-of-9, including four straight field goals by Story that dwindled the ETSU lead to nine, 38-29. But the hosts kept App from getting any closer, as an 8-0 burst to finish out the first half pushed the lead to 46-29.

ETSU went 15-for-18 from the field in the third period, which kept Appalachian at bay and making sure it couldn't mount a comeback.

Erica Haynes-Overton led three players in scoring with a game-high 35 points on 16-of-26 for the Bucs.

The Mountaineers will look to get back on track against College of Charleston inside the Holmes Center on Sunday at 2 p.m.

Appalachian State volleyball suffered a 3-1 loss to Radford in the First Round of the National Invitational Volleyball Championship (NIVC) on Thursday evening on the campus of Clemson.

The Mountaineers see their season come to a close with a 22-9 record. Radford improves to 22-6 and advances to take on either Clemson or Alabama A&M in the second round on Friday.

Kara Spicer paced the Mountaineer offense with 16 kills on a .343 hitting mark, to go along with four total blocks (three assists, one solo). Emma Longley added 13 kills and nine digs.

Grace Morrison had eight kills, Amya Giger had seven kills and Victoria Wilform had six kills.

Becky Porter tallied her team leading 12th double-double of the season with 44 assists and 18 digs. Emma Reilly finished with 19 digs, Sydney Hinds added 12 digs and Sydney Farthing chipped in with nine.

In the first set, the Mountaineers used a 5-1 run to open a 13-7 lead. App State continued to pull away and built a 21-12 lead. Radford used a late rally to cut the Mountaineer to 24-23, but a kill from Spicer gave the Black and Gold the opening set 25-23.

The Highlanders took control of Set 2, breaking an 8-8 tie with seven straight points to open a 15-8 edge. The Black and Gold pulled to within five points, but could get no closer, dropping the set 25-17.

In Set 3, Radford broke a 7-7 tie with two straight points. The Highlanders held the lead and were clinging to a 21-20 lead, before winning the final four points to take the frame 25-20.

In the fourth set, App State scored three straight points early on to jump in front 4-3. Radford answered back with a 9-1 run to open a 12-5 lead, only to see the Mountaineers respond with five straight points to trim the deficit to 12-10. Trailing 21-19, the Highlanders reeled off four straight points to clinch the set and victory.

The Mountaineers conclude the season with 22 victories, marking the most for the program since the 2015 season. App State also won the Sun Belt East Division title for the first time since the conference moved to a division format in the 2016 season.

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