Sports

Sports (1050)

Wednesday, 27 November 2019 23:17

L-R's Artis Named Harlon Hill Award Nominee

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Lenoir-Rhyne senior DE Jaquan Artis has been nominated for the 2019 Harlon Hill Trophy as the Division II College Football Player of the Year.

A total of 36 student-athletes were nominated. Ten nominees hail from Super Region 1, four from Super Region 2, 10 from Super Region 3 and 12 from Super Region 4.

The sports information directors at the 167 NCAA Division II football-playing institutions nominate and vote on the award. The 36 initial candidates will be placed on regional ballots and the top two players from each of the four NCAA regions will advance to the national ballot when regional voting concludes on Monday, December 2.

The winner of the 2019 award will be announced on Friday, December 20 and the winner will be honored at the Little Rock Touchdown Club awards banquet on January 9, 2020.

Artis, a senior from Kinston, N.C., was a force on defense for the Bears this season. He led the SAC in sacks with 12 and is ranked ninth in NCAA Division II in sacks per game, averaging 1.05 per game. He made 65 total tackles this season, including 36 solo tackles, with 19.5 tackles for loss, accounting for 95 yards. Behind his leadership, the Bears rank No. 4 in the nation in team sacks and they are No. 6 in rushing defense allowing just 77.1 yards per game on the ground. Artis was also picked as the conference's Defensive Player of the Year.

The sports information directors at their respective schools nominate candidates. The SIDs in those Super Regions vote for their top five candidates. The winner is then determined in a nation-wide vote of the Division II sports information directors.

The group of 36 candidates includes 13 quarterbacks, 10 running backs, seven wide receivers, three defensive linemen and three linebackers.

The list features 20 seniors, 10 juniors, five sophomores and one freshman. Two nominees - Notre Dame (Ohio)'s Jaleel McLaughlin and Valdosta State's Rogan Wells - return after advancing to the finalist stage in 2018.

The Hill Trophy is named for the late Harlon Hill - the former University of North Alabama standout - who excelled with the Lions from 1950-53 before going on to fame in the National Football League with the Chicago Bears.

Wednesday, 27 November 2019 23:13

L-R Women's Basketball Lose at Tusculum

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Tusculum used a 23-10 second quarter run to jump ahead of the Bears in a 66-49 win in SAC Opener for both teams.

After a back and forth first quarter, the Bears struggled from the field in the 2nd quarter shooting 2-12 for the quarter. The Pioneers ended up taking a 23-10 run to open up a 15 point halftime lead.

LR ended up shooting 20 from 59 from the field for 33.9% and 5-18 from three point (27.8%). Madeline Hardy was the only Bear in double figures. Hardy had 14 points on 5-14 shooting from the field.

Hanna McClung had a season-high 9 points; McClung went 3-5 from three point range for the Bears.

The Bears had 21 turnovers leading to 24 fastbreak points for the Pioneers.

Kiara Moore had four blocks for LR in 15 minutes.

Hardy and Karlie Bearden each had seven rebounds, however LR got out rebounded 48-37.

Tusculum is ranked third in the D2SIDA Women's Basketball Southeast Region Rankings that came out yesterday.

Before tonight's game; Tusculum and LR have spilt the last 10 meetings. However Tusculum has now won the last five games.

With 14 point tonight, Madeline Hardy is now sitting on 399 career points.

Bears have now lost five straight SAC openers; LR's last SAC opener win was against Queens in 2014.

L-R is 2-4 overall, 0-1 in the South Atlantic Conference. The Bears will take the short trip to Charlotte Saturday afternoon for a 2:00 PM tip against Queens.

Wednesday, 27 November 2019 23:10

L-R Men's Basketball Falls in SAC Opener

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In their South Atlantic Conference opener, the Lenoir-Rhyne Men's Basketball Team fell to Tusculum by a final score of 70-58. The Bears couldn't overcome a cold shooting night, going just 17-for-58 from the field and 7-for-31 from long range.

Lenoir-Rhyne entered as the 14th best scoring offense in Division II but were held to 35 points less than their average.

Tusculum's defense entered as the best shot blocking team in the conference and added six more to their ledger tonight.

Tusculum prevailed despite a nine minute field goal drought late in the second half. However, the Pioneers converted 25-of-31 from the free throw line during the game and free throws helped them hold on late.

One of the best rebounding teams in the nation, Tusculum held a 55-36 advantage on the glass.

R.J. Gunn led Lenoir-Rhyne with a game-high 22 points and Mason Hawks added nine. The duo combined for six of the Bears seven made 3-pointers in the contest.

Three players scored in double figures for the Pioneers, led by 19 from Trenton Gibson. Tusculum led the entire way with LR cutting the lead to one point on two separate occasions.

Lenoir-Rhyne won two of the three matchups against Tusculum last year, including a SAC Tournament Quarterfinal victory.

The Bears have won 17 of the last 26 head-to-head matchups with the Pioneers.

Tusculum entered tonight's game ranked No. 1 in all of Division II in offensive rebounds per game (22.0) and sixth in total rebounds per game (46.3). Brandon Mitchell leads the nation in offensive rebounds per game at a shade over 5 per game.

The Bears connected on just 1 of their first 17 three-point attempts. The seven made threes on the night ties a season low for the Bears.

The Bears are 4-2 overall, 0-1 in the South Atlantic Conference. L-R will continue a five-game road swing when they travel to No. 11 Queens on Saturday.

Non-conference:
A.C. Reynolds: 50
Hibriten: 40

Ashe County: 62
Alexander Central: 53

Draughn: 66
St. Stephens: 51

Freedom: 64
East Burke: 57

South Caldwell: 51
Patton: 38

Non-conference:
Alexander Central: 60
Ashe County: 35

Bunker Hill: 63
Maiden: 52

Draughn: 72
St. Stephens: 64

Freedom: 69
East Burke: 35

Hibriten: 61
A.C. Reynolds: 51

Patton: 60
South Caldwell: 47

O'Showen Williams tied his career-high with 22 points, but App State men's basketball fell 78-69 at East Tennessee State on Tuesday evening.

Williams also scored 22 points against Little Rock in the First Round of the Sun Belt Tournament during the 2017-18 season. He made a career-high seven field goals, went a perfect 5-of-5 from the free throw line and tied his season-high with six rebounds.

Isaac Johnson posted his second double-double of the season and 14th of his career with 14 points, a season-high 15 rebounds and three assists. Johnson's 15 rebounds bettered his season-best of 14 set against UNCG on Nov. 18 and is just two rebounds shy of his career-high of 17 set last season against Georgetown.

Justin Forrest had 14 points and Kendall Lewis tallied seven points, four rebounds, two assists, a career-high tying two blocks and a career-best tying two steals in a reserve role.

In the first half, the Mountaineers (4-4) used a layup from Johnson and jumper from Lewis to take a 12-11 lead. ETSU (6-1) answered with a three-pointer, but Williams came right back with a trey of his own to knot the score at 14-14 with 10:50 left in the opening half. The Buccaneers responded with a 16-2 run to open a 30-16 lead and took a 33-23 advantage into the break.

After the Buccaneers opened the second half with a basket, Johnson scored all nine points on a 9-2 App State run to pull the Mountaineers within five points at 37-32. After ETSU pushed its lead back to 10 points, the Black and Gold came right back with six consecutive points to pull within 44-40 with 13:48 left.

App State continued to draw closer and cut its deficit to two points three times, including 60-58, on a pair of free throws from Forrest with 5:12 remaining. The Buccaneers responded with a 10-2 spurt to push their lead back to 10 points at 70-60 with 3:02 left. The Black and Gold trimmed its deficit to seven points, but could get no closer the rest of the way.

Tray Boyd III paced the Buccaneers with a game-high 22 points off the bench, while Vonnie Patterson pulled down 14 rebounds.

App State will host St. Andrews on Dec. 3 in its non-conference home finale at 7 p.m. on ESPN+.

Non-conference:
Bandys: 57
Hibriten: 39

Fred T. Foard: 65
West Lincoln: 26

West Iredell: 44
St. Stephens: 22

Non-conference:
Fred T. Foard: 58
West Lincoln: 32

St. Stephens: 74
West Iredell: 52

Tuesday, 26 November 2019 07:16

App State Women's Basketball Edged Out by ETSU

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A comeback effort by Appalachian State women's basketball fell short in a 67-61 defeat to ETSU on Monday evening inside the Holmes Center.

App State falls to 0-5, while ETSU improves to 2-5 on the season.

Pre Stanley (Rockledge, Fla./Rockledge) fired in at least 20 points for the second straight game on 9-of-15 shooting from the field en route to a game-high 22 points. She scored all of her points in the second half. Ashley Polacek (Ottawa, Canada/UCF) scored 10 points with a game-high four assists, while Armani Hampton (Winston-Salem, N.C./Atkins) posted back-to-back double-digit rebounding efforts for the first time in her career. She tied a personal-high with 12 off the glass, seven of which were offensive. The senior chipped in with eight points.

The Mountaineers, trailing by as many as 18 in the third quarter, put together a 22-8 run over a 6:41 span to dwindle the deficit to just four, 61-57.

Stanley bounced back from early foul trouble to take charge in the surge, highlighted by pouring in 17 of the Apps' 21 fourth-quarter points. The Rockledge, Fla., native scored 13 straight points for the Black and Gold in the final frame during the run to put the Mountaineers within striking distance.

ETSU's Shynia Jackson hit a 3-pointer to push the lead back to seven, 64-57, before another bucket by Stanley and a field goal by Hampton brought the home team within four. A late field goal with eight seconds by E'Lease Stafford sealed the win for the Bucs.

The visitors got out to an 11-5 start with 3:12 left in the first period before a 7-0 run by a pair of Hampton field goals and a Nicola Mathews (Adelaide, Australia/College of Central Florida) trifecta gave the Apps a 12-11 lead. ETSU responded by scoring the final four points to go into the second quarter with a 15-12 lead.

ETSU gained separation in the middle two quarters, shooting a combined 50 percent from the field (35.7 percent in first and fourth periods) and hitting five of its six 3-pointers, outscoring the hosts 41-28.

App State's bench production did improve, outscoring ETSU's reserves 18-4 after scoring just two points against Gardner-Webb. The Apps also held a 39-32 rebounding advantage, a 17-7 edge in second-chance points and committed a season-low 10 turnovers.

Four players scored in double figures for ETSU, led by Micah Scheetz's 20 points. Jackson was right behind her teammate with 19.

App will host Mercer on Friday at 6:30 p.m. in the final non-conference home game of the season.

Tuesday, 26 November 2019 07:15

Appalachian State Field Hockey Signs Four

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App State field hockey head coach Meghan Dawson and her coaching staff are excited to announce the addition of four future student-athletes to the 2020 signing class.

The Mountaineers sign Grace Ball, Leah Hurwitz, Peyton Ritchey and Talayna Viscuso. The signing class comprises two forwards, a midfielder and a goalkeeper. Three of the four signees come from Pennsylvania, while Hurwitz chose to stay in-state to join the Mountaineers.

"I'm extremely excited to get our 2020 class signed and closer to getting them on our beautiful campus," Dawson said. "All four signees bring hustle, heart and intensity, and they're going to challenge our current group to get better and more competitive as a unit. They're all hard workers, and that will gel nicely with our team's core values."

Grace Ball | 5'4 | Midfielder | Blue Bell, Pa. | Wissahickon High School

A talented midfielder that averaged almost two goals per game as a senior, Ball played high school field hockey for head coach Lucia Gil at Wissahickon High School. Ball capped off her impressive career at Wissahickon with 32 goals and 16 assists in just 18 games as a senior. The Pennsylvania native earned field hockey all-league honors all four years while notching all-state honors as a junior and as a senior. Ball's on-field accomplishments resulted in her being named her high school team's best offensive player, best all-around player and most valuable player. Ball also played club field hockey for X-Calibur under head coach Brian Hope, helping the team place second in the National Club Championship in 2018 and 2019. Born on June 6, 2002, Ball is the daughter of Vicki and Bob Ball. The future Mountaineer also has two younger siblings, Robert and Riley. Her mother is a former softball and field hockey player who played collegiately at La Salle, while her father played baseball in college at La Salle. Her hobbies include photography, art and writing.

Leah Hurwitz | 5'0 | Forward | Chapel Hill, N.C. | East Chapel Hill High School

A standout goal scorer that played high school field hockey at East Chapel Hill High School, Hurwitz will remain in North Carolina to join the App State program. In four years under head coach Carlos Melendez, Hurwitz was named to the East/West All-Star Team in 2017 and 2018, the NCFHA Second Team in 2017 and the NCFHA First Team in 2018. The North Carolina native also earned all-state second team honors in 2018 before garnering all-state first team honors in 2019. Hurwitz played club field hockey for the Carolina All-Stars under head coach Grant Fulton. Hurwitz was born on March 4, 2002, and has one older sister, Zoe, who is currently a junior at App State. Hurwitz plans to study health science or political science once she arrives at App State.

Peyton Ritchey | 5'4 | Forward | Langhorne, Pa. | Neshaminy High School

A leading point scorer for head coach Jamie Pinto at Neshaminy High School over the past three years, Ritchey adds another goal-scoring threat to the App State roster. The Pennsylvania native amassed 66 goals and 54 assists over four high school seasons, leading the league in total points as a junior and as a senior. Ritchey earned first team all-state honors as a junior and all-league honors as a sophomore, junior and senior. Ritchey became a team captain and was named Neshaminy's Rookie of the Year as a freshman. The forward also played club field hockey for Mystx under head coach Tina Reinprecht, helping the club win the USA Field Hockey U16 championship and the U16 National Hockey Festival championship. Off the field, the future Mountaineer was also named to the all-state academic team as a junior. Born on May 15, 2002, Ritchey is the daughter of Bill and Kathleen Ritchey. Ritchey has one older brother, Billy. She plans to major in interior design when she arrives at App State.

Talayna Viscuso | 5'2 | Goalkeeper | Birdsboro, Pa. | Twin Valley High School

A lockdown goalkeeper that posted 13 shutouts as a senior, Viscuso played high school field hockey for head coach Kim Walsh at Twin Valley High School. Viscuso sported a .961 save percentage and made 276 saves as a senior, helping her earn Twin Valley's MVP award in her final high school season. The Pennsylvania native was also named the team's co-MVP as a junior. The future Mountaineer garnered Berks All-Division honors as a junior and as a senior. Along with Grace Ball, another 2020 signee, Viscuso played club field hockey for Brian Hope with X-Calibur. Viscuso helped X-Calibur finish second in both the Regional Club Championship and the National Club Championship in 2019. The club team was also crowned the Junior Premier Outdoor League champions in 2019. Born on Aug. 14, 2002, Viscuso is the daughter of Michael Viscuso and Tabathe Osbeck. She has three younger siblings, Mikey, Isabella and Jullian.

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