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Sports (382)

Lenoir-Rhyne University's Michael Green has been named the 2013-14 South Atlantic Conference Male Athlete Of The Year, announced today the league's Athletic Directors Council.

Green, a senior defensive back on the football team, was named the 2013 SAC Defensive Player Of The Year and earned First-Team All-American honors by Daktronics, Beyond Sports Network and d2football.com.

Green finished with 88 tackles on the year to go along with eight interceptions including three picks returned for scores as the Bears won their third straight league championship.

Green, a First-Team All-Super Region II pick by both Daktronics and Don Hansen as well, led Lenoir-Rhyne to a 13-2 record in 2013 and a berth in the NCAA Division II National Championship game.

The Bears also set a school record for wins in a single season and finished the year ranked No. 2 in the country.

Green has earned first-team all-conference honors for three straight years and leaves Lenoir-Rhyne as the school's all-time leader in interception return yards (429) and punt return yards (901). For his career, Green has 274 total tackles, 18 interceptions and six touchdowns.

Green is the first Lenoir-Rhyne male athlete to win the honor since Roman Davis in 2004-05. The last L-R athlete, male or female, to earn the award was Kate Griewisch (women's cross country) two years ago. Wingate's Jade Montgomery (women's soccer) was named the 2013-14 South Atlantic Conference Female Athlete Of The Year.

2013-14 South Atlantic Conference
Athlete of the Year Nominees

Vincent Bailey, Basketball, Lincoln Memorial
Craig Brooks, Baseball, Catawba
Bo Cordell, Football, Tusculum
Ross Frame, Soccer, Carson-Newman

Jazmine Charles, Basketball, Lenoir-Rhyne
Kelli Hensley, Softball, Carson-Newman
Christina Rustscheff, Tennis, Queens
Brooklyn Watt, Track & Field, Anderson

Napoleon, Ohio: 10
Hickory: 4

Appalachian State University obtained 34 student-athletes on the 2014 spring All-Conference list, as announced by the league office on Wednesday.

To be eligible, student-athletes must carry at least a 3.3 cumulative grade point average entering the spring season and were required to compete in at least 50 percent of their teams' competitions during the recently concluded spring campaign. In addition, the student-athletes must have successfully completed at least 24 credit hours in the previous two semesters.

Men's outdoor track and field high jumper, Darrow Goff, and women's outdoor track and field polevaulter, Debra Domermuth,were the only two student-athletes in the conference to maintain a 4.0 GPA.

Wilmington: 5
Hickory: 1

Randolph County: 6
Hickory: 0

Appalachian State University men’s basketball’s Tommy Spagnolo (West Jefferson, N.C./Ashe County) has been granted a one-year extension by the NCAA and will be eligible to play for the Mountaineers during the 2014-15 campaign.

After spending one season at Radford (2010-11), Spagnolo sat out a year while attending classes at Appalachian State before earning a roster spot in walk-on tryouts prior to the 2012-13 campaign. Used sparingly in 2012-13, Spagnolo emerged as App State’s top post player after injuries forced him into the starting lineup over the final two months of the 2013-14 season.

Spagnolo averaged 8.5 points and 6.9 rebounds per game last season while playing in every game for Appalachian including 18 starts. He posted eight double-doubles over the final 13 games of the campaign and eclipsed the 20-point mark three times in the team’s final eight games.

“I am thrilled that Tommy has been granted his extra year of eligibility,” said head coach Jim Fox. “I know how badly he wanted this. He has said time and time again how much he wants to be a leader and help us rebuild this program. We will depend not only on Tommy’s skill, but also his ability to mentor our young players and I know he is anxious to get going. “

“I would also like to thank Jonathan Reeder and Sean Dotson in the compliance office for all their work in presenting Tommy’s case to the NCAA as well as thank the NCAA for allowing Tommy to continue playing the game he loves.”

Spagnolo’s return gives Fox a total of 11 returners, including four starters, from last year’s squad. The 11 returners will be joined by three newcomers who signed with the Mountaineers in May.

The 55th Annual South Atlantic League All-Star Game began as a display of the league's pitching prowess and concluded with a flurry of offense, as the Northern and Southern Divisions ended in a 4-4 tie after 10 exciting innings.

In front of 3,753 fans at L.P. Frans Stadium, Lexington Legends outfielder Dominique Taylor was presented with the MiLB.com Star of Stars Award as the game's MVP, finishing the night 2-3 with a double and two, 10th inning RBIs. All 52 eligible players appeared in the game for both divisions, including all three Hickory Crawdads representatives along with Delmarva Shorebirds ace and Catawba, NC native Hunter Harvey.

The Northern Division jumped out to the initial lead with a run in the 2nd inning, as Greensboro's Carlos Lopez tripled to right with two outs and came in to score on a corresponding wild pitch from Savannah Sand Gnats right-hander Kevin McGowan for a 1-0 score.

The South responded with a pair of runs in the third, coming on a 2-RBI single up the middle by Charleston RiverDogs' outfielder Aaron Judge for a 2-1 Southern Division advantage. Both offenses went quite after that with the pitching staffs combining to keep the score the same until the bottom of the 8th, when Hagerstown's Rafael Bautista singled to left, stole second, took third on a ground out, and eventually scored on a wild pitch to tie the score at 2-2.

That set the stage for a wild 10th inning that saw both squads score two runs to end the game with a 4-4 tie. The South struck first with a 2-RBI single to center by Taylor, before the North rallied with a RBI sacrifice fly by West Virginia catcher Reese McGuire followed by a 2-out, RBI single to right by Shorebirds' first baseman Trey Mancini to deadlock the game for good at 4-4.

The 4-4 tie is the first for the SAL All-Star Game since 2010, when the Northern and Southern Divisions played to a 5-5 tie at Fluor Field in Greenville, SC.

Hundreds entered, but only two could win, and those two Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn ticket-design contest winners have been selected, the tournament announced today. The 12th annual Champions Tour event is set for Oct. 13-19, 2014 at Rock Barn Golf & Spa.

Artwork from Shawn Pendleton, a third grader at W.A. Young Elementary School in Morganton, N.C., and Sierra Sharp, a third grader from South Newton Elementary School in Newton, N.C., will be featured on tickets for this year’s Greater Hickory Kia Classic. Both winners will receive the following Grand Prize package:

· $500.00 donated to each winner’s school.

· $100.00 savings bond awarded to each winning student.

· $100.00 Kaplan school supply gift certificate to each winning student’s teacher.

· Rock Barn Spa gift certificate for each winning student’s teacher.

· Picture with defending champion Michael Allen at the 2014 Greater Hickory Kia Classic Media Day on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014.

· Recognition in official Greater Hickory Kia Classic tournament program.

· The two winners will throw out a ceremonial first pitch at the Hickory Crawdads game on Thursday, August 14th during Greater Hickory Kia Classic “Volunteer Night”

“The Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn ticket design contest received many creative, funny and interesting pieces of artwork,” executive tournament director Jim Correll said. “With around 400 entries, our judges had a tough job narrowing them down to 12 finalists, but from there, our Board of Directors voted to select the winners. Congratulations to Sierra and Shawn, and thank you to the more than 400 kids who entered the contest.”

Children from throughout Western North Carolina submitted artwork in hopes of their work being featured on tickets for the 2014 Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn. A panel of judges comprised of people with various connections to the Greater Hickory Kia Classic narrowed the field to 12 finalists, and from there, the two talented young artists were selected. Every student that participated in the 2014 Ticket Design Challenge will receive a free ticket to a Hickory Crawdads game and a free daily ticket for the 2014 Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn.

Greater Hickory Kia Classic tickets may be purchased from greater Hickory-area charitable organizations or through the tournament website, www.greaterhickorykiaclassic.com.

The 12th annual Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn is set for Oct. 13-19 at Rock Barn Golf & Spa in Conover, N.C. The event features a week of special events and attractions, including exhibitions, pro-ams and three days of Champions Tour competition among some of the greatest legends in golf. Operated by the Greater Hickory Classic Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the tournament donates all net proceeds to charities throughout the Greater Hickory Metro area each year. For more information, please call (828) 459-4000 or visit www.greaterhickorykiaclassic.com. Follow the Greater Hickory Kia Classic on Twitter: @greaterhickory

Eric Krupa, president of the South Atlantic League, has announced updates to the rosters for the 55th Annual SAL All-Star Game, scheduled to be played on June 17, 2014, at L.P. Frans Stadium in Hickory, North Carolina, home of the Hickory Crawdads.

For the Northern Division, there are four changes to the pitching staff. Greensboro's Domingo German, Kannapolis' Jake Sanchez, and Hagerstown pitchers Nick Pivetta and Autin Voth will not be available for Tuesday's game. Replacing them on the roster will be Kannapolis' Matt Abramson, Delmarva's Dylan Rheault and Hickory's Ryne Slack. There were two additional changes to the Northern Division roster. Greensboro's Austin Dean and Hagerstown's John Wooten will not play in Tuesday's game. Delmarva's Trey Mancini has been named as a utility infielder and Hagerstown's Rafael Bautista has been named as a utility outfielder.

Turning to the Southern Division lineup, there are five changes to the pitching staff. Savannah's Miller Diaz, Rome's Yean Carlos Gil, Greenville's Joe Gunkel, Charleston's Caleb Smith and Augusta's Luis Ysla will not be available for Tuesday's game. Replacing them on the roster will be Greenville's Jonathan Aro, Savannah pitchers John Gant and Tim Peterson and Augusta's Jake Smith. Also, Charleston first baseman Mike Ford will not play in Tuesday's game. Greenville's Jantzen Witte will now start at first base and Savannah's L.J. Mazzilli has been named as a utility infielder.

2014 South Atlantic League All-Stars


Patrick Anderson, Hagerstown

Corey Ragsdale, Hickory

Sam Nerron, Hagerstown

Luis Ordaz, Hagerstown

Hunter Harvey, Delmarva
Matt Abramson, Kannapolis
Cody Forsythe, Lakewood
Cody Kendall, Hickory
Matt Milroy, Greensboro
Dylan Rheault, Delmarva
Ryne Slack, Hickory
Sebastian Vader, Delmarva
Jake Walsh, Hagerstown
Jimmy Yacabonis, Delmarva

Chad Wallach, Greensboro
Spencer Kieboom, Hagerstown
Reese McGuire, West Virginia

Felix Munoz, Greensboro

Wilmer Difo, Hagerstown

Drew Dosch, Delmarva

J.P. Crawford, Lakewood

Erich Weiss, West Virginia

Trey Mancini, Delmarva

Mike Yastrzemski, Delmarva

Evan Van Hoosier, Hickory

Carlos Lopez, Greensboro

Rafael Bautista, Hagerstown

Samuel Hiciano, Lakewood

Willians Astudillo, Lakewood

Sean Fields, Hickory


Luis Rojas, Savannah

Darren Fenster, Greenville

Paul Abbott, Greenville

Matthew Lujan, Augusta
Dario Alvarez, Savannah
Jonathan Aro, Greenville
Robert Coles, Savannah
John Gant, Savannah
Brady Lail, Charleston
Kevin McGowan, Savannah
Akeel Morris, Savannah
Tim Peterson, Savannah
Jake Smith, Augusta

Jake Romanski, Greenville
Victor Caratini, Rome
Frank Schwindel, Lexington

Jantzen Witte, Greenville

Jeff McNeil, Savannah

Ryan McMahon, Asheville

Gavin Cecchini, Savannah

L.J. Mazzilli, Savannah

Carlos Asuaje, Greenville

Aaron Judge, Charleston

David Dahl, Asheville

Victor Reyes, Rome

Dominique Taylor, Lexington

Tyler Horan, Augusta

Correlle Prime, Asheville

Billy Whitehead, Asheville

The Hickory Crawdads concluded the first half of the South Atlantic League season with an exclamation point Sunday afternoon, as the 'Dads won their 15th game over their last 16 contests with a 14-4 victory over the Lakewood BlueClaws at FirstEnergy Park.

A Crawdads offense which has been the driving force behind the team's resurgence erupted for 14 runs on a season-high 19 hits en route to winning their 41st game in the first half for the first time since becoming a Texas Rangers affiliate in 2009. All nine Hickory hitters reached base safely at least once in the win, while all nine also ended the game with at least one RBI as well.

Infielder Janluis Castro led the attack with a 5-6 performance, including his first home run of the year, two RBI, and three runs scored. Ryan Cordell finished one hit behind, going 4-6 with two RBI and two runs, while Jairo Beras went 3-4 with his first homer, one RBI, and two runs.

After being shutout in the first frame, the 'Dads scored at least one run in each of the next six innings, plating one in the 2nd, two in the 3rd, three in the 4th, four in the 5th, three in the 6th, and one last run in the 7th.

Castro got the run party started in the 2nd with a RBI single to right, while a RBI double from Ronald Guzman and a RBI groundout by Travis Demeritte in the 3rd plated two runs and gave the Crawdads a 3-0 lead. The advantage doubled to 6-0 with a 3-run 4th, including a solo homer by Castro, a RBI single from Michael De Leon, and a RBI sacrifice fly to center by Nomar Mazara.

The Crawdads pushed the lead to 10-0 after scoring four more runs in the 5th, starting with Beras' solo homer to left. De Leon followed later in the frame with a RBI single to right before both Mazara and Guzman drew bases loaded, RBI walks.

Hickory's lead reached its largest at 13-0 in the 6th, with RBI singles from Luis Marte and Cordell followed by a RBI groundout by Joe Jackson. The BlueClaws mounted their only offense in the bottom of the frame with four runs on zero hits, two walks, and two hit batsmen by rehabbing reliever Daniel Bard, before the 'Dads got their final run of the game in the 7th with another RBI base knock by Cordell for the final 14-4 score.

Crawdads starting pitcher Ricardo Rodriguez (4-1) earned the win with five shutout innings pitched, allowing just three hits and two walks while striking out a season-high six. BlueClaws starter Tyler Viza (2-9) took the loss after allowing six runs, four earned, on nine hits over three innings on the mound.

The Crawdads (41-28) and the rest of the league will be off until June 19th for the three-day SAL All-Star Break. The 55th Annual SAL All-Star Game is scheduled for Tuesday, June 17th at 7:00 pm at L.P. Frans Stadium in Hickory. The 'Dads will start the second half of the schedule on Thursday with a 7:05 pm scheduled first pitch in Rome, GA against the Braves.

Hickory: 4
Steubenville, Ohio: 3
at Shelby

Hickory: 7
Napolean, Ohio: 5
at Shelby