Sun Belt champion Appalachian State (10-2) will face Middle Tennessee (8-5) of Conference USA on Dec. 15 in the 2018 R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl.
Televised by ESPN, the game in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome will begin at 9 p.m. ET (8 p.m. CT). The matchup was announced Sunday as the complete 2018-19 bowl schedule was revealed.
App State earned a Top 25 ranking this season en route to winning its third straight conference title thanks to a 30-19 victory Saturday against Louisiana in the inaugural Sun Belt Championship Game. SEC teams Vanderbilt, Georgia and Kentucky were responsible for three of the four regular season losses by Middle Tennessee, which won Conference USA's East Division with a 7-1 record before it lost 27-25 to UAB in the Conference USA Championship Game.
"Once our guys found out, if you win the championship this year, you're going to New Orleans, that fired everybody up," App State head coach Scott Satterfield said.
"You're playing in a primetime slot on ESPN, so everybody is excited and pumped about going to a different city. We'll face a great opponent in Middle Tennessee. When you are fortunate to play in a bowl game, you know that the other team is going to be a quality opponent that will also be fired up about playing one more time. We will get to work this week on scouting Middle Tennessee and look forward to what our guys will be able to experience next week down in the Big Easy."
BOWL TICKETS: Tickets are available by visiting the Bowl Ticket page. The deadline for priority seating is Thursday, Dec. 6, at noon. For additional information or help with purchasing tickets, contact the App State athletics ticket office at 828-262-2079. If you cannot attend the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, please consider donating your tickets, which will enable App State to provide opportunities to students and charity organizations that will showcase the pride of App Nation. To donate, please call the ticket office at 828-262-2079.
For additional information on tickets, bowl week events, game day information, travel and lodging, visit Bowl Central and appstatesports.com throughout the week.
BOWL TRAVEL: Appalachian State Athletics has partnered with Sports & Entertainment Travel (SET) to provide a turnkey bowl travel and lodging experience for Mountaineer fans. Please visit appstatesportstours.com for packages. Bowl tickets must be purchased separately.
This is the Mountaineers' fourth straight bowl appearance in as many years eligible after transitioning from the FCS to FBS level, joining Marshall as the second program to accomplish that feat, and Middle Tennessee will also be making its fourth straight bowl appearance.
App State is the only team in history to win bowl games in its first three years after the transition to FBS, having claimed Camellia Bowl victories over Ohio in 2015 (31-29) and Toledo in 2016 (31-28) before it won the Dollar General Bowl over Toledo in 2017 (34-0).
App State ranks third nationally with 148.1 passing yards allowed per game, while Middle Tennessee has a father-son combo with its head coach (Rick Stockstill) and senior quarterback (Brent Stockstill).
Brent Stockstill is No. 1 among active FBS quarterbacks with 105 career touchdown passes and No. 2 with 12,165 career passing yards. This season, he has thrown 28 touchdown passes and eight interceptions while averaging 247.2 yards through the air per game. Leading receiver Ty Lee has 67 catches for 828 yards and seven touchdowns.
In addition to its high ranking in pass defense by yardage, the Mountaineers are No. 14 with 15 interceptions this season and No. 2 with 71 interceptions in the last four seasons. Junior cornerback Clifton Duck has 12 interceptions in his three seasons, and Appalachian got title-game interceptions Saturday from Tae Hayes and Josh Thomas.
It will be a matchup of high-scoring offenses, as App State averages 36.7 points (20th nationally) and Middle Tennessee averages 29.2. The Blue Raiders rush for 133.1 yards per game, and the Mountaineers are allowing only 131.1.
A Middle Tennessee defense that allows 25.3 points, 159.8 rushing yards and 213.1 passing yards per game will attempt to slow down an App State offense led by sophomore quarterback Zac Thomas, the Sun Belt's Offensive Player of the Year, and sophomore running back Darrynton Evans, the MVP of the Sun Belt Championship Game. Evans had 218 all-purpose yards Saturday (111 rushing yards along with a 97-yard kickoff return) as he increased his season total to 1,079 rushing yards even though he didn't become the primary back until Jalin Moore suffered a season-ending injury in the fifth game.
Appalachian State indoor men's track & field opened the 2018-19 season with a second place finish at the Appalachian Open on Friday and Saturday.
The Mountaineers tallied 107 points in the meet. Wofford took home first place with 128 points.
The Black and Gold won a total of five events on the weekend.
Peter Kenn captured the weight throw, covering 49-7.75 (15.13m) with his toss. Michael Albert placed third in the event with a PR toss of 49-4.50 (15.05).
Tristian Shaver took first in the pole vault, clearing 16-0.75 (4.90m), while Elliott Graves won the 55-meter hurdles in a PR time of 6.56 seconds.
Jabari Johnson won the 55-meter dash with a PR time of 6.43 seconds. Johnson also captured the 300-meter dash in 34.51 seconds, setting a new Holmes Center record in the process. Graves placed second in the 300-meter dash in a PR time of 35.15 seconds.
App State took three of the four top spots in the high jump. Jordan Dale placed second with a mark of 6-7.00 (2.01m), Daniel Lauffenburger was third with a PR height of 6-7.00 (2.01m) and Andrew Underdal was fourth with a mark of 6-3.25 (1.91m).
John Fravel earned a second place finish in the 800-meter run in 2:00.49.
Appalachian State will take time off for the holidays and will compete again on Jan. 11 and 12 at the ETSU Track & Field Invitational.
1. Wofford 128; 2. Appalachian State 107; 3. Winthrop 64.5 4. Gardner-Webb 64 5. UNC-Asheville 50; 6. Mount Olive 43; 7. Queens (N.C.) 23; 8. Mars Hill 19; 9. Lees-McRae 10.5
Ashley Muschiatti won the weight throw and shot put to lead the Appalachian State women's track & field team to a second place finish at the season opening Appalachian Invitation on Friday and Saturday.
The Mountaineers tallied 132 points in the 10-team meet. Wofford won the team title with 141 points.
Muschiatti won the weight throw with a toss of 55-7.00 (16.98m), which represents a PR. She also posted a toss of 42-6.50 in the shot put, which was good for first place.
Competing in her first collegiate meet, Hassani Burris captured the triple jump with a mark of 37-8.00 (11.48m). Burris also recorded a second place finish in the long jump, covering 17-10.25 (5.44m).
The Black and Gold took the top two spots in the 1-mile run. Hana Ratcliffe crossed first in 5:12.39, with Kylee Frady placing second in 5:19.71.
In the pole vault, Hannah Emery won the event clearing 12-0.00 (3.66m), Lainey Hunnicutt finished in a tie for second with a mark of 11-5.50 (3.51m) and Sofia San Miguel was fourth with a height of 11-0.25 (3.36m).
Jelonnie Smith recorded the seventh fastest time in program history in the 300-meter dash, winning the event in 40.47 seconds. She also was second in the 55-meter dash with a time of 7.19 seconds.
Kayla Carson was second in the high jump with a mark of 5-3.00 (1.60m) and Jessica Dixon was third in the 300-meter dash in 41.60 seconds.
Appalachian State will compete again at the ETSU Track & Field Invitational on Jan. 11 and Jan. 12.
1. Wofford 141; 2. Appalachian State 132; 3. Gardner-Webb 52.5; 4. Col. of Charleston 50.5; 5. UNC-Asheville 49.5; 6. Mount Olive 37.5; t7. Mars Hill 23; t7. Winthrop 23; 9. Queens (N.C.) 13; 10. Lees-McRae 5
Senior Cross Country runner Domtila Kiplagat represented Lenoir-Rhyne on the national stage today, running a cold and wet 6k course in Pittsburgh at the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships.
Kiplagat, a Kenyan native, was the South Atlantic Conference's Runner of the Year and qualified for Nationals by winning the individual crown at the conference meet. In a field of 264 of the best runners in all of Division II, Kiplagat finished 82nd.
Kiplagat's time of 24:17.2 in her final collegiate race placed her in the top third of the most competitive field she has faced.
The Bears will now turn their attention to Track and Field season which starts tomorrow in Winston-Salem.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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)
Trojans season ends at 11-2. Panthers advance to the Western Regional Finals hosting Shelby on Friday.
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.
Catawba Valley Community College head volleyball coach Shannon Hudson has been named one of two recipients of the Two-Year College Northeast-Southeast Region Coach of the Year honor, which was officially announced by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) on Thursday.
This is the first time in her career that Hudson has been named ACVA Region Coach of the Year award.
“What an honor to be recognized by the AVCA with this award,” Hudson said. “It is humbling to be considered among such a seasoned group of respected coaches. I am so thankful to my family for all of their support and encouragement over the years, especially my husband Shane who has always been by my side, and a big thanks to (CVCC assistant) coach Mark Wimberley, as well. God has truly blessed our program with an awesome coaching staff, great administrative support and wonderful student athletes. It is a privilege to be a part of the Red Hawk volleyball program and exciting to receive national recognition through the AVCA.”
Having just finished her 10th season as head coach at CVCC, Hudson guided an extremely young and talented Red Hawks squad this past fall to a 36-10 record — her sixth season with at least 30 coaching wins.
Under Hudson, the 2018 CVCC volleyball team also recorded a 14-0 mark in conference play — the seventh-straight season that Catawba Valley has finished undefeated in Region X matches. The Red Hawks also won their seventh-straight conference championship.
On Oct. 16, 2018, Hudson notched an important milestone in her coaching career, etching her 300th career coaching victory at CVCC to become the first coach in school history to break the 300-win barrier.
After claiming the District O championship, the CVCC volleyball team returned to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) DII tournament this past month in Charleston, W.Va — the fifth trip to nationals during Hudson’s decade-long coaching tenure.
The Red Hawks ended the 2018 NJCAA DII tournament with a ninth-place national finish — the second-highest finish in program history. CVCC’s three national tournament victories in 2018 are also the most ever.
On top of her AVCA Region Coach of the Year honor, Hudson has also been honored this season as the District O Coach of the Year — her fifth time winning that honor (2009, 2012-13, 2016, 2018). She’s also a four-time Region X Coach of the Year (2012-13, 2015-16).
By virtue of her Region Coach of the Year Honor, Hudson is on the ballot for the 2018 AVCA Two-Year Colleges National Coach of the Year award.
She will be officially presented with her Region Coach of the Year honor at the 2018 Jostens Coaches Honors Luncheon in Minneapolis, Minn. during the 2018 American Volleyball Coaches Association Convention, which takes place Dec. 12-16.
The NCHSAA Board of Directors Winter Meeting concluded Thursday in Chapel Hill. Classification appeals, adjustments and conference placement requests from member schools as stipulated for the midpoint of each four-year alignment cycle were voted on and approved or denied on a case-by-case scenario. West Caldwell High School submitted a request to be reclassified from 3A to 2A and the request was approved. Effective 2019-2020, West Caldwell will compete in the Northwestern Foothills 2A Conference. With West Caldwell's departure, the Northwestern 3A/4A Conference will only have seven teams.
Highlighted by quarterback Zac Thomas being named Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Year, Scott Satterfield being named Sun Belt Coach of the Year and the program's 16 all-conference selections including six All-Sun Belt first-team picks, Appalachian State fared well as the league announced its 2018 awards Thursday.
The Mountaineers, who will host the Sun Belt Championship Game on Saturday after winning the East Division with a 7-1 record, put senior defensive tackle MyQuon Stout, junior defensive back Clifton Duck, junior offensive lineman Victor Johnson, junior linebacker Jordan Fehr, junior defensive back Desmond Franklin and sophomore running back Darrynton Evans on the All-Sun Belt first team. Duck received first-team recognition for the third straight year, and Johnson repeated as a first-team choice.
The All-Sun Belt second team included Thomas, senior offensive lineman Chandler Greer, junior linebacker Akeem Davis-Gaither, sophomore receiver Corey Sutton and sophomore offensive lineman Noah Hannon, while the third team had senior defensive back Tae Hayes, senior linebacker Anthony Flory, junior tight end Collin Reed, Duck (return specialist), and Evans (all-purpose).
App State's 16 all-conference selections were second most behind Troy's 19.
Four other App State players were All-Sun Belt honorable mention: junior defensive back Josh Thomas, junior linebacker Noel Cook, sophomore offensive lineman Ryan Neuzil and freshman tight end Henry Pearson.
With the nation's third-youngest roster, based on underclassmen occupying three-fourths of it, Satterfield led the Mountaineers to a division title. App State pushed Penn State to overtime in its 2018 opener and suffered its only league loss with Zac Thomas sidelined after his third play at Georgia Southern. The Mountaineers will join Clemson and Oklahoma this weekend as the only FBS teams contending for a third straight conference title.
Satterfield, who is tied for sixth nationally with 39 wins since 2015, holds a 43-7 record against opponents from Group of Five conferences and a 34-6 record against Sun Belt opponents.
Thomas, a first-year starter who replaced four-year starter Taylor Lamb at quarterback, enters the Sun Belt Championship Game with 18 touchdown passes, eight rushing touchdowns and just four interceptions. He ranks among the nation's top 35 quarterbacks with league-leading totals in QBR, passing efficiency and yards per completion.
Stout, a two-year captain, is the anchor up front whose work helped App State's defense give up an average of just 9.2 points in the team's nine regular season victories. The Mountaineers allowed 10 points or less in seven of those wins and led the Sun Belt with top-10 national rankings in total defense, scoring defense, pass efficiency defense, passing defense, yards allowed per pass attempt, third-down defense, fourth-down defense, three-and-outs per game and first downs allowed.
Fehr is a two-time Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Week who had 75 tackles, a team-high 5.5 sacks, 7.5 tackles for loss, one fumble recovery and a key safety (at Coastal Carolina) during the regular season. Aside from missing most of App State's only league loss, he averaged 8.4 tackles in his other Sun Belt appearances, including a 15-tackle, one-sack game at Arkansas State.
Franklin is tied for the league lead with four interceptions to go along with his 43 tackles, and Duck has registered 44 tackles in addition to increasing his three-year total to 12 interceptions.
Johnson has started all 37 games of his career at left tackle for an offensive line that ranks in the top 20 nationally in rushing yards per game and fewest sacks allowed per game, while Evans averaged a league-best 112.8 rushing yards and 151.0 all-purpose yards in Sun Belt play. With five games of 100-plus rushing yards since he replaced the injured Jalin Moore as App State's primary tailback in mid-October, Evans has 968 rushing yards in 11 games this year.
Thomas was named the second-team quarterback behind first-team pick and Sun Belt Player of the Year Justice Hansen of Arkansas State, and Davis-Gaither made the second team while leading the league's top-ranked defense with 89 tackles. His 9.0 tackles per game in conference play ranked third overall and first among players from bowl-eligible teams.
Sutton has eight touchdowns and 672 receiving yards on 34 catches, allowing him to rank 11th nationally at 19.8 yards per reception, and Hannon has started all 24 of his career games at center. Greer, a fifth-year senior, emerged as a preseason option to start at right tackle and has played that position well all season for the Mountaineers.
The statistical highlights for the third-team selections include 80 tackles from Flory, two interceptions with 31 tackles from Hayes and three touchdown receptions from Reed. Evans opened the season with a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown at Penn State, and Duck's punt return for a touchdown against Gardner-Webb has helped him rank No. 9 nationally at 13.3 yards per return.
Josh Thomas is a junior captain with two interceptions and 33 tackles as a starting safety, and Cook has a team-high 9.0 tackles for loss among his 61 tackles in just 10 games. Neuzil has graded out extremely well as App State's starting left guard, and the PFF College site ranked Pearson as the nation's fifth-best true freshman tight end. He has 13 catches for 159 yards and one touchdown.
2018 Sun Belt All-Conference Football Teams
Player of the Year: Justice Hansen (Arkansas State, QB, RS-Senior)
Offensive Player of the Year: Zac Thomas (Appalachian State, QB, Sophomore)
Defensive Player of the Year: Ronheen Bingham (Arkansas State, DE, Senior)
Newcomer of the Year: Kirk Merrit (Arkansas Sate, WR, Junior)
Freshman of the Year: Marcel Murray (Arkansas State, RB, Freshman)
Coach of the Year: Scott Satterfield (Appalachian State)
First Team Offense
QB - Justice Hansen (Arkansas State, RS-Senior)
RB - Darrynton Evans (Appalachian State, Sophomore)
RB - B.J. Smith (Troy, Junior)
WR - Kirk Merrit (Arkansas State, Junior)
WR - Marcus Green (ULM, Senior)
WR - Damion Willis (Troy, Senior)
TE - Keenen Brown (Texas State, Senior)
OL - Victor Johnson (Appalachian State, Junior)
OL - Lanard Bonner (Arkansas State, Senior)
OL - Curtis Rainey (Georgia Southern, Senior)
OL - Kevin Dotson (Louisiana, Junior)
OL - Kirk Kelley (Troy, Junior)
First Team Defense
DL - MyQuon Stout (Appalachian State, Senior)
DL - Ronheen Bingham (Arkansas State, Senior)
DL - Jeffrey Gunter (Coastal Carolina, Sophomore)
DL - Trevon Sanders (Troy, Senior)
LB - Jordan Fehr (Appalachian State, Junior)
LB - Bryan London II (Texas State, Junior)
LB - Hunter Reese (Troy, Senior)
DB - Clifton Duck (Appalachian State, Junior)
DB - Desmond Franklin (Appalachian State, Junior)
DB - Justin Clifton (Arkansas State, Senior)
DB - Kindle Vildor (Georgia Southern, Junior)
DB - Cedarius Rookard (Troy, Senior)
First Team Special Teams
K - Tyler Bass (Georgia Southern, Junior)
P - Brandon Wright (Georgia State, Junior)
RS - Marcus Jones (Troy, Sophomore)
AP - Marcus Green (ULM, Senior)
Second Team Offense
QB - Zac Thomas (Appalachian State, Sophomore)
RB - Elijah Mitchell (Louisiana, Sophomore)
RB - Wesley Fields (Georgia Southern, Senior)
WR - Corey Sutton (Appalachian State, Sophomore)
WR - Justin McInnis (Arkansas State, Senior)
WR - Jamarius Way (South Alabama, Senior)
TE - Javonis Isaac (Arkansas State, Sophomore)
OL - Chandler Greer (Appalachian State, Senior)
OL - Noah Hannon (Appalachian State, Sophomore)
OL - Jeremiah Culbreth (Georgia Southern, Senior)
OL - Robert Hunt (Louisiana, Junior)
OL - Deontae Crumitie (Troy, Senior)
Second Team Defense
DL - William Bradley-King (Arkansas State, Sophomore)
DL - Forrest Merrill (Arkansas State, Junior)
DL - Raymond Johnson (Georgia Southern, Sophomore)
DL - Tyree Turner (South Alabama, Junior)
LB - Akeem Davis-Gaither (Appalachian State, Junior)
LB - David Griffith (ULM, Senior)
LB - Bull Barge (South Alabama, Senior)
LB - Tron Folsom (Troy, Junior)
DB - Jerry Jacobs (Arkansas State, Sophomore)
DB - Monquavion Brinson (Georgia Southern, Junior)
DB - Nigel Lawrence (South Alabama, Senior)
DB - Marcus Jones (Troy, Sophomore)
Second Team Special Teams
K - Tyler Sumpter (Troy, Sophomore)
P - Cody Grace (Arkansas State, Junior)
RS - Tra Minter (South Alabama, Junior)
AP - Tra Minter (South Alabama, Junior)
Third Team Offense
QB - Caleb Evans (ULM, Junior)
RB - Marcel Murray (Arkansas State, Freshman)
RB - Trey Ragas (Louisiana, Sophomore)
WR - Penny Hart (Georgia State, Junior)
WR - Ja'Marcus Bradley (Louisiana, Junior)
WR - Deondre Douglas (Troy, Senior)
TE - Collin Reed (Appalachian State, Junior)
OL - Hunter Atkinson (Georgia State, Junior)
OL - T.J. Fiailoa (ULM, Sophomore)
OL - Bobby Reynolds (ULM, Junior)
OL - Tristan Crowder (Troy, Junior)
OL - J.l. Gaston (Troy, Junior)
Third Team Defense
DL - Tarron Jackson (Coastal Carolina, Sophomore)
DL - Logan Hunt (Georgia Southern, Senior)
DL - Zi'Yon Hill (Louisiana, Freshman)
DL - Antione Barker (Troy, Junior)
DL - Jarvis Hayes (Troy, Junior)
LB - Anthony Flory (Appalachian State, Senior)
LB - Jacques Boudreaux (Louisiana, Junior)
LB - Nikolas Daniels (Texas State, Junior)
DB - Tae Hayes (Appalachian State, Senior)
DB - Darreon Jackson (Arkansas State, Junior)
DB - Blace Brown (Troy, Senior)
DB - Tyler Murray (Troy, Sophomore)
Third Team Special Teams
K - Massimo Biscardi (Coastal Carolina, Freshman)
P - Tyler Sumpter (Troy, Sophomore)
RS - Clifton Duck (Appalachian State, Junior)
AP - Darrynton Evans (Appalachian State, Sophomore)
Bunker Hill: 64
West Lincoln: 39
North Iredell: 66
Alexander Central: 19
Alexander Central: 56
North Iredell: 47
West Lincoln: 45
Bunker Hill: 51
The Catawba Valley Community College men’s basketball team avenged its only loss of the season on Wednesday, knocking off rival Caldwell CC&TI 90-82 on the road.
With the victory, the Red Hawks (6-1) continue their their best start to a season since the 2012-13 campaign.
Five different CVCC basketball players reached double figures in scoring in Wednesday’s non-conference win, including a team-high 16 points from sophomore forward Jordan Powell.
Freshmen Zach De La Cruz (15 points), Dezure Moulden (14) and Sal-Bey Young (12) and sophomore Everett Palmer (14) also reached double figures for the Red Hawks.
Catawba Valley trailed 37-32 at halftime against Caldwell with the Cobras outshooting the Red Hawks 16-4 at the free throw line during the half. CCC&TI made 10 of those free chances, while CVCC was 3-of-4 from the free throw line.
After making just 14 of its 39 free throws in its 68-63 loss on Nov. 7 to the Cobras, CVCC made 15 of its 24 free chances against Caldwell on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the Cobras struggled, making just 21 of their 41 free throw opportunities.
Within a few points of the lead, but trailing for most of Wednesday’s contest, CVCC rallied late, taking its first lead of the game with 5:45 remaining after a made 3-pointer by De La Cruz.
The sophomore from Franklin, N.C. made five 3-point baskets during Wednesday’s game, including four during the second half. Palmer added three 3-pointers, including two coming in the second half.
Powell also helped lead the second half scoring surge for CVCC, tallying 14 of his 16 points during the half. The Red Hawks scored a season-high 58 points during the second half en route to the eight-point victory.
The CVCC men’s basketball team returns to the court in exactly a week when it welcomes Davidson County Community College for its first Region X game of the season. Tip off for that contest is set for 7 p.m. at the Tarlton Complex.
In a matchup between top 25 teams, the No. 17 Lenoir-Rhyne Men's Basketball Team dropped a seven point decision to No. 23 Queens on Wednesday evening inside Shuford Gym, 76-69. The loss was the first of the season for the Bears who had won six straight to open the year.
The Bears were led by Cory Thomas who posted a double-double, finishing with 18 points and 10 boards. Thomas went 6-for-15 from the field and added an assist and a steal.
Djibril Diallo added 16 points four rebounds and four assists on the evening.
LR shot a season-low 24 percent from long range, connecting on just 6-of-25 from beyond the arc.
Queens got 19 points from Daniel Carr and another double-double from Shaun Willett.
Lewis Diankulu was a perfect 8-for-8 from the floor and totaled eight boards to go with his 17 points.
The double-double from Thomas was the second of his career.
Queens has now won 10 of the last 12 head-to-head meetings with the Bears. This is the fifth straight loss at home by LR against the Royals.
L-R drops to 7-1 overall and 1-1 SAC. The Bears return to action next week when they travel to Carson-Newman for an 8 p.m. matchup with the Eagles.
The Lenoir-Rhyne University Women's Basketball Team used a strong defensive effort and a big fourth quarter to defeat the Queens Royals, 64-51 at home in South Atlantic Conference action on Wednesday night.
The senior trio of Madi Suddreth (16), Ashley Rodriguez (11) and Kendall Toineeta (10) scored in double-digits tonight for the Bears as only one player, Lade Adepoju (17), was in double-figures for the Royals.
The Bears were suffocating on the defensive end of the floor, holding Queens to just 23.4 percent shooting and only 13.0 percent from beyond the arc.
The biggest difference in the game was each team's depth. LR's bench added 28 points while the Royals only had 15 from their reserves.
The Bears held the advantage down low, out rebounding their opponent, 53-43.
The senior duo of Suddreth and Toineeta both continue to be productive scoring this season. They each have put in double-digit scoring efforts in six of the seven games this season. Rodriguez reached the same feat for the second time this year.
This win increased the team's record at home to 2-1 in the 2018-19 campaign.
Lenoir-Rhyne is 4-3 overall and 1-1 in the South Atlanitc Conference. The Bears end its home stand with a nonconference clash against Johnson C. Smith University on Saturday, Dec. 1 at 2 p.m.