By Nathan Ham
Appalachian State men’s hoops had to hit pause on their season back on February 2 following three positive COVID-19 tests among team members and others having to quarantine following exposure to those players.
On Friday, the Mountaineers will be back on the court for the first of back-to-back games against South Alabama. Tip-off on Friday is set for 6 p.m. and the teams will play each other again on Saturday at 4 p.m. These two games will be the final home games of the year.
According to a scheduling update from the university, the two games against Coastal Carolina have been canceled and will not be made up. The Mountaineers will play at Georgia State on Tuesday, February 23 as part of the two-game series that was postponed earlier this month. The other game with the Panthers will not be rescheduled.
The Mountaineers will be looking to snap a two-game losing streak after losing a pair of games to Troy on January 29 and January 30. Overall, App State is 12-7 with a 6-4 record in the Sun Belt Conference. Counting this weekend’s games and the Tuesday rescheduled game, the Mountaineers have five games remaining in the regular season. App State will head to Georgia Southern on February 26-27 to wrap up the regular season. The Sun Belt Tournament is scheduled for March 5-8 and will be played in Pensacola, Florida.
This weekend series with South Alabama is a big one in the standings. South Alabama is sitting one spot ahead of Appalachian in the standings. They are 8-5 in the Sun Belt while App State is 6-4. Should the Mountaineers be able to win their five remaining games, they will clinch no worse than a second-place finish in the Sun Belt. Texas State currently leads the conference at 15-6 overall and 9-3 in conference play.
In-person attendance is still limited to just 25 fans so the best way to see the remaining App State games will be online on ESPN+. Game times for the remainder of the season can be found here. The television schedule for the Sun Belt Conference Tournament has not been released yet.
Sun Belt Standings
*As of games played through February 16
- Texas State: 15-6, 9-3
- South Alabama: 14-8, 8-5
- Appalachian State: 12-7, 6-4
- Arkansas State: 10-9, 7-5
- Louisiana: 14-7, 8-6
- Coastal Carolina: 12-6, 6-5
- UT-Arlington: 11-11, 7-7
- Georgia Southern: 12-10, 6-7
- Little Rock: 10-11, 6-8
- Georgia State: 9-5, 3-4
- Troy: 10-12, 4-8
- Louisiana-Monroe: 5-16, 3-11