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Monday, 29 July 2019 07:41

Hickory Crawdads Rout Asheville Saturday

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The Hickory Crawdads defeated the Asheville Tourists 7-1 in front of a packed LP Frans Stadium. Over 3,500 fans filled the stadium as the 'Dads evened the series at one game each.

Back-to-back doubles by Miguel Aparicio and Frainyer Chavez in the second inning gave the 'Dads a 1-0 lead. Matt Whatley sent a ball over the left field wall to make the lead three runs.

The Tourists got a run back in the third inning but still trailed by two runs. 'Dads starting pitcher Cole Winn (the Rangers' #4 prospect) pitched five frames, giving up just the one earned run and striking out four.

The Crawdads added another pair of runs in the fifth to make the score 5-1. Pedro Gonzalez hit his 19th homerun of the season for the first run. Josh Jung drew a walk and advanced to second and third on a ground out and wild pitch. Tyreque Reed hit a sac fly bring in Jung to score.

In the bottom of the eighth, the 'Dads once again put two runs on the board and extended their lead to six runs. Miguel Aparicio hit an RBI triple and was brought in on a single by Frainyer Chavez.

Monday, 29 July 2019 07:40

App State Track and Field Hires Smyre

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Appalachian State track & field head coach Damion McLean has announced that Whitney Smyre has been named as throws coach for the program.

Smyre was a standout field athlete during her time in at App State from 2006-11. She threw in every event but the javelin while in the High Country and was an eight-time All-Southern Conference honoree and four time Southern Conference champion (weight throw in 2009 and 2011, hammer in 2009, shot put in 2009). In addition, Smyre was a 12-time All-Region performer and qualified for the NCAA East Regional in the hammer throw in 2009.

"Whitney is going to be a great addition to the coaching staff here at App State," said McLean. "As a former alum, developer and technical coach, she will progress our student-athletes into great men and women in the real world once they graduate. She comes with learning and coaching experience and has built great relationships with her athletes."

Smyre spent the last two seasons as the throws coach at Lenoir-Rhyne. While there, she helped the Bears women's track & field program capture the South Atlantic Conference (SAC) outdoor team title in 2019. She also coached three athletes to Division II NCAA provisional marks.

Prior to Lenoir-Rhyne, she worked at Wingate from 2011-17 in the throws department, seeing the women's program capture the SAC outdoor title in 2017 and the men's program win the conference championship in 2014. Smyre also saw two athletes post Division II NCAA provisional marks.

In eight total seasons as a coach in the SAC, Smyre coached 14 conference champions, 25 All-Southeast Region honorees, 46 All-SAC finishers and 132 SAC top-nine finishers.

Smyre will coach all five throwing events for the Mountaineers.

The Hickory Crawdads fell to the Asheville Tourists 6-4 on Friday night in the series opener.

Asheville took a 5-0 lead over the 'Dads, scoring a run in the first inning, three in the second, and another in the fourth. Two of the runs were unearned off starting pitcher Ronny Henriquez.

Jax Biggers got the 'Dads on the board with a solo homerun to lead off the bottom of the fourth inning.

The 'Dads added another run in the bottom of the fifth inning. Jonathan Ornelas was hit by a pitch and advanced to second on a wild pitch. He came home on a single by Biggers.

Kole Enright helped the 'Dads chip away at the lead with a homerun to dead center in the sixth.

In the bottom of the seventh the 'Dads scored their fourth unanswered run to make it a one run game. Jax Biggers tripled for his third hit of the night. The hit also brought him within a double of the cycle. Josh Jung singled to drive in Biggers.

The Tourists pushed the score to 6-4 with a run in the eighth inning.

Appalachian State head coach Eliah Drinkwitz announced Friday that the football program has added three immediately eligible graduate transfers in Keishawn Watson, Willie Anderson and Joey Cave.

Watson previously played receiver at Western Michigan and is from Wheaton, Ill. A native of Wichita, Kan., Edwards was a cornerback at Illinois State, and Cave spent three years as a lineman in Tennessee's program. He is from Knoxville, Tenn., and attended the same high school as current App State linebacker Tim Frizzell.

After redshirting at Western Michigan in 2015, the 5-foot-11, 180-pound Watson totaled 68 catches for 728 yards and nine touchdown receptions over the next three seasons. He led the team with seven touchdown receptions and 41 catches during the 2017 season, when he also threw touchdown passes of 27 and 13 yards.

As a redshirt junior in 2018, Watson caught 25 passes for 330 yards and two scores.

Watson posted his best receiving game at Western Michigan when he made five catches for 93 yards and two touchdowns against Ball State in 2017. That immediately followed a six-catch game with two touchdowns against Wagner.

The 6-1, 200-pound Edwards started at cornerback each of the last two seasons for Illinois State and totaled 76 tackles in 19 games during that time. After redshirting in 2015 and being named the scout team's top performer on special teams, he totaled two interceptions and 10 pass breakups over the next three seasons.

Edwards started the first eight games of the 2018 season and had a career-high 11 tackles against top-ranked FCS opponent North Dakota State, which pulled out a 28-14 victory against No. 7 Illinois State.

The 6-4, 312-pound Cave worked as an offensive lineman for his final two years at Tennessee after arriving as a defensive lineman in 2016.

App State returns 17 of its 22 offensive and defensive starters from last year's team that won the inaugural Sun Belt Conference Championship Game and defeated Middle Tennessee in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl. The Mountaineers will open the 2019 season with an Aug. 31 home game against East Tennessee State.

The Hickory Crawdads dropped the series finale against the West Virginia Power 3-2 on Thursday night. With wins in the first two contests, the 'Dads still got the series win.

The Crawdads jumped ahead 1-0 in the bottom of the second. Pedro Gonzalez started off the inning with a single. He advanced to second on a wild pitch and took third on a balk. Matt Whatley hit a sacrifice fly that brought Gonzalez in for the first run of the game.

The 'Dads made it a two-run game in the bottom of the third with another run. Josh Jung doubled to lead off the third inning. Jax Biggers laid down a bunt to third that the fielder threw away, allowing Jung to score.

West Virginia tied the game up with a pair of runs in the top of the fourth inning as the 'Dads misplayed a ball in the outfield.

The Power took a 3-2 lead in the seventh inning with a solo homerun.

The 'Dads got the tying run on base in the ninth but were unable to bring him in to score.

The Crawdads kick off a four-game series against the Asheville Tourists tomorrow night. It is also Wild West Night and the 'Dads will wear specialty jerseys that will be auctioned off via the Live Source app. Bidding is now open for all jerseys and will run through the first pitch of the seventh inning. Following the game, there will be a post-game fireworks show presented by Sharp Business Systems and PDQ.

With the start of another Appalachian State football season approaching quickly, Appalachian State athletics unveils several new and updated game day parking lots for the 2019 season.

The new or updated lots for 2019 are:

Top of the Rock: This NEW lot is located behind the Mark E. Ricks Athletics Complex, adjacent to the current Champions Lot (previous site of the Appalachian tennis courts). Donors assigned to Top of the Rock should utilize Stadium Drive, turning onto Jack Branch Drive and following the road around the stadium, past the Sofield Indoor Practice Facility and beyond the Champions Lot. Top of the Rock is the final parking area on Jack Branch Drive behind the Mark E. Ricks Athletics Complex and will be clearly marked for your convenience. You will exit postgame utilizing the same route.

Champions Lot: This lot remains located directly behind the Mark E. Ricks Athletics Complex. Donors assigned to the Champions Lot should utilize Stadium Drive, turning onto Jack Branch Drive and following the road around the stadium, past the Sofield Indoor Practice Facility. Champions Lot will be the next lot on the right and will be clearly marked for your convenience. You will exit postgame utilizing the same route.

Softball Lot: This NEW lot is located between the Sofield Indoor Practice Facility and Sywassink/Lloyd Family Softball Stadium. Donors assigned to Softball Lot should utilize Stadium Drive, turning onto Jack Branch Drive and following the road around the stadium. Take an immediate right after passing the plaza for the Sywassink/Lloyd Family Softball Stadium but before reaching the Sofield Indoor Practice Facility. The lot will be clearly marked for your convenience. You will exit postgame utilizing the same route.

Mountaineer Lot: This NEW lot is located adjacent to Bowie Hall & Eggers Hall, close to Kidd Brewer Stadium. The Mountaineer Lot is comprised of the former Bowie/Eggers parking lot and the top of the new Stadium Deck that's flush with the Bowie/Eggers lot. Donors assigned to the Mountaineer Lot should utilize Stadium Drive, turning onto Jack Branch Drive and taking an immediate right after Bowie Hall. The lot will be clearly marked for your convenience and have two points of exit postgame. You may exit postgame utilizing the same route or by proceeding down through the levels of the Stadium Deck to the new exit road next to the Schaefer Center. The new exit road will provide one-way access to Rivers Street.

Stadium Deck: This NEW lot is located between Eggers Hall & Frank Hall. Donors assigned to the Stadium Deck should utilize Stadium Drive, turning onto Jack Branch Drive and taking an immediate right before (so a new path will open on that side of Bowie?) Bowie Hall. The lot will be clearly marked for your convenience, and have two points of exit postgame. You may exit postgame utilizing the same route or by proceeding down through the levels of the Stadium Deck to the new exit road next to the Schaefer Center. The new exit road will provide one-way access to Rivers Street.

Peacock Lot: Formerly named the "Raley Lot," this game day lot is now officially named Peacock Lot.

Appalachian State junior running back Darrynton Evans has added appearances on the watch lists for the Paul Hornung Award and the Wuerffel Trophy to a series of preseason accolades.

Presented by Texas Roadhouse, the Paul Hornung Award is given annually to the most versatile FBS player in the country, and the Wuerffel Trophy is awarded to the FBS player who best combines exemplary community service with athletic and academic achievement. Earlier this month, Evans was named to the watch list for the Maxwell Award that goes to America's college player of the year and the Doak Walker Award that is presented to the nation's best college running back.

Evans ranked ninth nationally in 2018 by totaling 1,764 all-purpose yards, including a league-leading 1,187 rushing yards even though he didn't become App State's primary back until Game 5. His nine touchdowns included a 100-yard kickoff return against Penn State and a receiving touchdown against Louisiana.

Evans averaged 6.6 yards per rush and 32.7 yards per kickoff return last season. He was one of only two players nationally with at least 1,000 rushing yards and 400-plus return yards.

Evans extended App State's 1,000-yard rusher streak to seven consecutive years, the second-longest active streak in the nation, as a big-play threat who had six runs of 50-plus yards (No. 3 nationally) and 16 runs of 20-plus yards (No. 4 nationally). In addition to his return touchdown at Penn State, he also had a 97-yard kickoff return in the Sun Belt Championship Game.

The Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) announced its Academic Top 25 rankings for each division and the Lenoir-Rhyne Women's Basketball Team ranked 14th in Division II.

Boasting a team GPA of 3.644, the Bears are the only South Atlantic Conference program to earn top 25 status. The Bears have earned national rankings in each of Cameron Sealey's first two seasons, placing No. 5 in 2018 with a 3.70 team GPA.

The WBCA Academic Top 25 recognizes NCAA Division I, II and III, NAIA and two-year GPAs inclusive of all student-athletes on their rosters for the entire season. The 2018-19 season is the 24th in which the WBCA has compiled the honor rolls.

Rank   Institution                                    Head Coach     GPA
1         Tiffin University                            Jessie Ivey       3.809
2         Lubbock Christian University       Steve Gomez   3.767
3         Rockhurst University                    Larry Park        3.737
4         Seton Hill University                    Mark Katarski   3.734
5         University of Findlay                    James Wiedie  3.725
6         Fort Hays State University           Tony Hobson   3.708
7         Lindenwood University                 Katie Falco      3.691
8         Lee University                               Marty Rowe    3.672
9         Purdue University Northwest        Courtney Locke 3.666
10       Augustana University                   Dave Krauth     3.665
11       University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Lynn Plett 3.652
12       Wayne State College                    Brent Pollari     3.649
13        Minnesota State University Moorhead Karla Nelson 3.646
14       Lenoir Rhyne University               Cameron Sealey  3.644
15       University of the Sciences in Philadelphia  Jackie Hartzell 3.630
16       Urbana University                       Andrea McCloskey  3.628
17       Chestnut Hill College                      Mike West          3.626
T18     Truman State University                 Amy Eagan        3.598
T18     Point Loma Nazarene University   Lisa Faulkner      3.598
20        Michigan Technological University Samantha Hoyt  3.574
21        Northwood University                      Jeff Curtis          3.565
22        Chadron State College                   Janet Raymer    3.560
23        Walsh University                             Kate Bruce        3.558
24        Southern New Hampshire University  Karen Pinkos 3.557
25        Lewis University                    Samantha Quigley Smith  3.553

The Hickory Crawdads took game two against the West Virginia Power 2-1 on Wednesday night, securing the win in the series. The three-game set wraps up Thursday night.

Melvin Novoa followed up his four-hit performance Tuesday night with a solo homerun in the fifth inning to give the 'Dads a 1-0 lead.

The Power tied the game up at one in the seventh inning with a run off reliever Grant Anderson.

The 'Dads quickly retook the lead in the bottom of the inning. Tyreque Reed doubled to start off the inning and advanced to third on Novoa's fly out to deep center. Matt Whatley doubled him in to put the Crawdads in front 2-1.

The series against the Power wraps up Thursday night at 7pm. The 'Dads are hosting a Tribute to Tom Hanks presented by WHKY 1290AM and 102.3FM and fans that dress up as their favorite Tom Hanks character can get a discounted $6 ticket. It is also Thirsty Thursday sponsored by Sheetz and Focus News and draft beer and Pepsi products will be discounted all night long.

The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced that the Lenoir-Rhyne Volleyball Team earned an AVCA Team Academic Award for the 2018-19 season.

The award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average on a 4.0 scale or a 4.10 cumulative team GPA on a 5.0 scale.

The AVCA Team Academic Award is the single largest award offered by quantity of schools, players and coaches honored. Since the 2000-2001 season, the number of recipients has increased every single year but two, while more than doubling the total over the last eight academic years. Since the award's inception in 1993, the amount of award winners has increased from 62 to its current number of 1,125.

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