Sports (1185)

Appalachian State junior guard Ronshad Shabazz (Raleigh, N.C./Huntington Prep) has been named First Team All-State by the North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association (NCCSIA).

Shabazz, who was also named Second Team All-Sun Belt and NABC Second Team All-District, earns this honor for the first time in his career.

He posted his strongest season as a Mountaineer in 2017-18, leading the team in scoring at 18.5 ppg. He also had a team-high 100 assists, becoming the first player to reach the century mark in assists since the 2010-11 season. He also became just the fifth player in program history to score at least 600 points in a season, totaling 609.

In his career, Shabazz currently ranks 11th all-time with 1,481 points. His career scoring average of 16.3 points also sits ninth in program history.

App State posted a 9-9 mark in Sun Belt play, which was tied for the most wins since the program joined the league in 2014-15. The Mountaineers also posted their highest finish in the conference of fifth place and won their first ever Sun Belt Tournament contest.

First-Team All-State
Pos. Name School Class Hometown
G Chris Clemons #@ Campbell University Jr. Raleigh, N.C.
G Ronshad Shabazz Appalachian State University Jr. Raleigh, N.C.
F Devontae Cacok & UNC Wilmington Jr. Riverdale, Ga.
F Tyler Seibring & Elon University Jr. Normal, Ill.
G Jon Davis # Charlotte Sr. Upper Marlboro, Md.
Second-Team All-State
Pos. Name School Class Hometown
C Raasean Davis North Carolina Central University RJr. Chicago, Ill.
G Jordon Talley UNC Wilmington Sr. Richmond, Va.
F Femi Olujobi North Carolina A&T State University RJr. Long Island, N.Y.
G David Efianayi Gardner-Webb University RJr. Orlando, Fla.
G Jahaad Proctor High Point University Jr. Harrisburg, Penn.
# - First-Team All-State in 2016-17
& - Second-Team All-State in 2016-17
@ - First-Team All-State in 2015-16


Hickory Metro Sports Commission’s Catawba County Sports Hall of Fame welcomes home Hickory-native and University of Tennessee Men’s Basketball Coach Rick Barnes to deliver the Hall of Fame Banquet’s keynote address on May 14. The Lenoir-Rhyne Hall of Famer joins an event that features induction of six new members and a team of excellence into the county’s shrine of sports greatness.

 "The CCSHOF is extremely grateful and honored that Rick Barnes has agreed to be our keynote speaker for this year's event,” said Catawba County Sports Hall of Fame Chairman JuJu Phillips. “Coach Barnes is one of the most accomplished coaches in college basketball. He doesn't do many engagements like this, so we are extremely pleased that he can return home to share his recent success story to our audience."

Recently concluding his third season as Volunteers head coach, Barnes was named Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year after his team won the conference championship, earned a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament and finished the regular season with a 25-8 record. The performance earned the 30-year Division I head coach recognition as one of four finalists for the Werner Ladder Naismith Coach of the Year Award.

A basketball standout at Hickory High School, Barnes is a 1977 graduate of Lenoir-Rhyne University where was inducted to the athletics Hall of Fame in 2002. He entered the basketball coaching ranks as an assistant at North State Academy in 1977. Ten years later he was named head coach of George Mason before stops at Providence (1988-1994), Clemson (1994-98) and then Texas (1998-2015) where he is the Longhorns’ all-time winningest coach.

Barnes’ 663 coaching wins ranks him sixth among active coaches, and his teams have made 23 NCAA Tournament appearances, six Sweet Sixteens, three Elite Eights and one Final Four in 2003. He has coached two National Players of the Year in the past 15 years, four consensus first-team All-Americans and three National Freshman of the Year honorees. Barnes has produced 24 total NBA Draft picks, including 14 first-round selections. 

“It's going to be a great night for Catawba County, friends of Rick Barnes, and fans of college basketball," Phillips said of the May 14 banquet. 

Tickets for the Catawba County Sports Hall of Fame Banquet are now on sale for $25 at high schools throughout Catawba County and the Hickory Highland Recreation Center, the site of the event. The 6 p.m. banquet includes a meal catered by Boxcar Grille of Claremont.

In addition to an induction ceremony and keynote address, the annual Catawba County Sports Hall of Fame banquet salutes Student Athletes of the Year from the public and private high schools throughout Catawba County. Area high school athletic directors or school representatives selected a male and a female finalist from each school. From the finalists, one male student athlete and one female student athlete will each receive a $500 scholarship sponsored by Cody Law Firm of Hickory.

Established in 2000, the Catawba County Sports Hall of Fame recognizes the extraordinary efforts and achievements of athletes, coaches, teams and contributors, while also reinforcing a sense of history and tradition in Catawba County. This year’s inductees include NASCAR Championship Crew Chief Mike Beam, Bandys High School state basketball champion Vernon Odom, Lenoir-Rhyne University’s all-time leading basketball scorer Raeford Wells, Duke University’s all-time leader for rushing and all-purpose yards Chris Douglas, North Carolina Special Olympian Greg Brunt, and three-time national championship softball manager Bob J. Lutz, who led this year’s Team of Excellence, the Howard’s Furniture/Western Steer Softball Team, a national softball powerhouse for three decades.

The Hickory Crawdads fell to the Delmarva Shorebirds 1-0 on the road Monday night.

The Crawdads were limited to one hit in the contest, by first baseman Sam Huff.

Reid Anderson picked up the tough-luck loss for the Crawdads on the mound. He pitched five innings, allowing only three hits, but giving up the lone run. He also struck out three.

The bullpen tandem of Jean Casanova and Grant Zawadzki pitched the final three innings, combining to give up only one hit.

The Crawdads fall to 0-4 on the season. They remain in Delmarva through Wednesday. Hickory will have their home opener Thursday taking on the West Virginia Power at 7pm.

The Lenoir-Rhyne University Men’s Golf Team moved up two places and into a sixth-place tie after the Second Round Monday of the 2018 South Atlantic Conference Championship at Cobb’s Glen Golf Course.


The Bears have totaled a 605 (+29) on the par-72, 7,002-yard course after 36 holes of play while No. 20 Carson-Newman leads with a 591 (+15). The Eagles are one shot better than third-ranked Newberry.


Lenoir-Rhyne is once again being led by junior Brad Robinson (Newcastle, UNITED KINGDOM). Robinson is tied for 12th place overall with a 149 (+5) with one round to go.


Robinson became the second player to ace a hole this year, tallying the hole-in-one on the par-three, 186-yard third hole. Senior Jordan Vogler (Pilot Mountain, N.C.) tallied an ace last week at the Tennessee River Rumble Intercollegiate in Loudon, Tenn., for the Bears.


The third and final round of the tournament will take place on Tuesday.


2018 South Atlantic Conference Men's Golf Championship

April 8-10 – Day Two Results

Anderson, S.C.

Cobb's Glenn Golf Course


Par: 72

Yards: 7,002


1. Carson-Newman 591 (+15)

2. Newberry 592 (+16)

3. Wingate 594 (+18)

4. Queens 598 (+22)

5. Lincoln Memorial 600 (+24)

6t. Lenoir-Rhyne 605 (+29)

6t. Anderson 605 (+29)

8. Coker 607 (+31)

9. Catawba 608 (+32)

10. Mars Hill 613 (+37)

11. Tusculum 652 (+76)


Lenoir-Rhyne's Individuals

12t. Brad Robinson 149 (+5)

20t. Jackson Bailey 152 (+8)

25t. Jordan Vogler 153 (+9)

25t. Dawson Walker 153 (+9)

43t. Carlos Lasso de la Vega Jessen 77 (+5)


Lenoir-Rhyne University’s Gabby Sousa and Ines Flueck have been named the AstroTurf South Atlantic Conference Women’s Lacrosse Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week, respectively.

Sousa, a junior attacker from Delran, N.J., wins the honor for the second time this year while Flueck picked up the weekly award for the third time this season. Both players led Lenoir-Rhyne to a pair of South Atlantic Conference victories last week over Mars Hill (16-4) and Lincoln Memorial (14-4) on Wednesday and Saturday, respectively.

Sousa totaled 10 goals and two assists for the week including a six-score performance against the Lions. Sousa leads the team in goals scored (44) and total points (53) and the preseason all-league honoree now has 113 total scores so far in her collegiate career.

Flueck, a senior goalkeeper from Coppell, Texas, made 12 saves last week while allowing just eight goals total in the two victories. On the year, Flueck has a 11.24 goals-against average – third in the league – to go along with 91 saves. The 2016 NCAA Division II All-American is the Bears’ all-time leader in stops (549).

Lenoir-Rhyne (6-7, 6-0) returns to the field to take on Catawba (9-5, 5-0) in a South Atlantic Conference showdown on Wednesday at 4:00 p.m., in Salisbury, N.C.

Lenoir-Rhyne University’s Emily Murchland has been named the AstroTurf South Atlantic Conference Women’s Tennis Player of the Week, league officials announced earlier today.

Murchland, a junior from Mount Victoria, NEW ZEALAND, broke a four-all tie with Coker on Sunday by pulling out a 4-6, 6-3 and 6-3 victory at No. 4 singles in a thrilling, 5-4 victory over the Cobras. The win also helped Lenoir-Rhyne clinch its first-ever berth to the South Atlantic Conference Tournament Championship.

Murchland went 2-0 at singles play for the week and picked up a victory at first doubles in the Bears’ 6-3 triumph over Catawba on the road last Wednesday.

On the year, Murchland is 11-5 in singles play – 5-3 in league play – in addition to a 10-7 mark in doubles competition (4-4 against SAC foes).

Lenoir-Rhyne (10-7, 3-5), winners of two straight matches, returns to the court to take on Livingstone on Tuesday at 3:00 p.m., at the YMCA of Catawba Valley.

Appalachian State University men's soccer head coach Jason O'Keefe and the coaching staff is excited to announce the signing of newly-committed Aldo Tarantini to the 2018 signing class.

With Tarantini's signing, the Mountaineers now have 11 student-athletes for the recruiting class, giving the Apps three defenders, three goalkeepers, three midfielders and two forwards.

Aldo Tarantini | 6'1 | Midfielder | Houston, Texas | Bellaire
The future Mountaineer was a two-year letterwinner at Bellaire High School under the tutelage of Harrison Douglas. Tarantini was lead the team in his junior season with nine goals starting in all 12 games, which led to a first-team all-district selection. In travel ball, he played under Bruce Talbot/Carl Fleming for Texas SC. In addition, he represented two travel teams in Venezuela with the U-14 Da Fratelsa Sport squad and the U-16/U-18 Metropolitanos program. Aldo is the son of Miguel Tarantini and Ana Pacheco. He has one sister, Sofia. His hobbies include spending time with his friends and family and playing video games. He intends to major in international business.

O'Keefe on Tarantini
"Aldo is a versatile player who will come in and compete for multiple positions. He is mature and will bring a professional mentality from day one. He is playing at a high level being coached by Bruce Talbot and Carl Fleming with the Houston Texans SC Club, so he will be prepared when he arrives."


The Lenoir-Rhyne Baseball Team (24-16, 11-10) split a South Atlantic Conference doubleheader with Tusculum (20-20, 12-9) Sunday afternoon at Bears Field. Tusculum rallied to take the first game by a 7-5 score while Lenoir-Rhyne dominated the nightcap, 13-3, to salvage the split.

In game one, the Bears’ defense committed five errors which led to five unearned runs for the Pioneers. Tusculum jumped out to a 7-1 lead and was able to hold on for the victory.

Lenoir-Rhyne redshirt freshman Brock Johnson (Granite Falls, N.C.) hit a two-run single in the bottom of the ninth inning and was part of a three-run ninth frame for the Bears, who came up just short. LR also lost despite holding an 11-8 advantage in hits. Lenoir-Rhyne junior Hunter Martin (Stanfield, N.C.) fell to 1-5 after taking the loss.

Tusculum’s Daulton Martin (Lancaster, Pa.) scored twice while Chase McAllister (Powell, Tenn.) (3-1) earned the win and Mitch McCain (Lawrenceville, Ga.) was credited with his fourth save of the year.

In game two, Lenoir-Rhyne jumped out to a 10-0 advantage after four innings of play and never looked back as the Bears salvaged the split.

Lenoir-Rhyne junior outfielder Aaron Stamper (Clemmons, N.C.) hit a three-run home run – his team-leading seventh of the year – while Johnson and junior outfielder Justin Dean (Mauldin, S.C.) both totaled three hits and two RBI in the victory.

Sophomore John Grigg (Lawndale, N.C.) improved to 7-1 after earning the win for the Bears.

Tusculum’s Seth DeHaven (Fort Myers, Fla.) hit a three-run home run but Tusculum’s Zach Sanders (Peachtree City, Ga.) fell to 3-4 after taking the loss.

The Bears remained above .500 in South Atlantic Conference play.

Lenoir-Rhyne remains at home to take on Erskine on Tuesday night at Bears Field beginning at 6:00 p.m.

The Lenoir-Rhyne Softball Team (36-5, 13-1), ranked No. 12 in NCAA Division II, swept a South Atlantic Conference doubleheader from Mars Hill (12-14, 3-9), 6-5 and 10-1, Sunday afternoon at Bears Field on Senior Day.

In game one, three players hit home runs for the Bears – junior outfielder Erin Boone (Creedmoor, N.C.), freshman third baseman Talon LaClair (Statesville, N.C.) and senior outfielder Christina Walker (Roxboro, N.C.) – as Lenoir-Rhyne rallied from a 4-2 deficit to take the win.

Walker’s home run in the bottom of the sixth inning – a two-run round-tripper – broke a four-all tie and proved to be the game-winner. Lenoir-Rhyne junior Brandi Parks (Roaring River, N.C.) improved to 17-3 after going the distance and earning the win.

For Mars Hill, Christiana Marasa (Palm City, Fla.) drove in three runs and Ashley Evans (Columbia, S.C.) hit a solo home run but Casey Stanek (Winston-Salem, N.C.) fell to 7-6 after taking the loss.

In game two, Lenoir-Rhyne scored eight runs over the first two innings to take control and run-rule Mars Hill.

Freshman outfielder Savannah Moorefield (Claudville, Va.) hit a two-run home run while Boone drove in three runs for the Bears, who totaled 13 hits in the contest. Lenoir-Rhyne junior Emily Kenley (Charlotte, N.C.) improved to 18-2 after earning the victory.

Mars Hill’s Emily Burriss (Raleigh, N.C.) hit a solo home run while Cristi Pressley (Monroe, N.C.) fell to 1-1 after taking the loss.

Lenoir-Rhyne has won 10 straight games and improved to 20-0 at home this year. The Bears have also won 34 of their last 36 contests and maintained their four-game lead in the conference standings.

Lenoir-Rhyne hits the road to take on No. 22 Queens in a South Atlantic Conference doubleheader on Tuesday beginning at 3:00 p.m., in Charlotte, N.C.

Appalachian State dropped its Sun Belt Conference series finale against visiting Troy, losing 15-3 in seven innings Sunday.

The Mountaineers will return to action Tuesday night at North Carolina.

Conner Leonard's two-run double to bring home Kendall McGowan and Riley Smith in the third inning cut App State's deficit to 4-2. Troy (21-10, 7-5) capitalized on two errors and scored 10 runs on nine hits in the top of the fourth inning, and Appalachian's Drew Beck led off the bottom of the fourth with a home run to center field.

C.J. Brown went 3-for-3 with two doubles after coming off the bench for the Mountaineers (8-21, 1-11), Beck was 2-for-2 and Bailey Welch went 2-for-4. Leonard was 5-for-10 in the series and is 7-for-15 in the last five games.

"We were absolutely outplayed in all facets today," App State coach Kermit Smith said. "A lot of credit to Coach (Mark) Smartt and his staff. It was nice to see Conner Leonard swing the bat like this all weekend. CJ and Beck had a good day at the plate. It could be a big boost if those guys could continue that."

App State senior Reed Howell made his first start since his freshman year, when six of his 19 appearances were as a starter. The Mountaineers' other pitchers were Kaleb Bowman, Tristan Helms, Bobby Hampton and Cameron Kepley, who allowed one earned run over the final three innings.

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