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Mountaineers Fall to Wolfpack in Season Opener

Tommy Spagnolo fell just shy of a double-double in his first collegiate start at NC State on Friday. Courtesy: App State Athletics/Maggie Hobson
Tommy Spagnolo fell just shy of a double-double in his first collegiate start against NC State on Friday. Courtesy: App State Athletics/Maggie Hobson

Nov. 11, 2013. An early second-half run was too much for Appalachian State University men’s basketball to overcome in a 98-77 loss at NC State in the 2013-14 season opener on Friday night at PNC Arena in the Global Sports Shootout.

The Mountaineers (0-1) hung tough with the Wolfpack (1-0) throughout the first half and trailed by just three points (43-40) after Chris Burgess opened the second half with a jumper, but NC State mounted a 21-4 run to take control and never looked back.

In a back-and-forth first half, Appalachian set the tone early when Tab Hamilton nailed a three-pointer on the team’s opening possession. The Wolfpack responded with a pair of quick buckets, but two more shots from Hamilton put the Mountaineers up 7-4 with 16:27 to go on the half.

After NC State regained the lead on Tyler Lewis’ fast-break layup just 37 seconds later, the Wolfpack was able to seize the momentum and build its lead to as many as 10 points (34-24) with just over five minutes remaining in the opening period. The Mountaineers did not back down, however, as the Apps chipped away at the lead and trailed by just five points (43-38) when Tevin Baskin nailed a three pointer at the buzzer to end the half.

After Burgess pulled Appalachian within three points on the opening possession of the second half, NC State came alive and reeled off a 21-4 run over the next 5:14 to grab its first 20-point lead of the day (64-44). It would be all Wolfpack from there as the Mountaineers never got closer than 15 points (89-74) and trailed by as many as 27 (74-47) in the second half.

Baskin led the Mountaineers with a career-high 24 points on 8-of-12 shooting, grabbed six rebounds and notched four steals. Hamilton and Frank Eaves each tallied double-digit point totals with 11 and 12, respectively. Tommy Spagnolo fell just shy of a double-double with eight points 10 rebounds and three blocks, all of which were career highs.

T.J. Warren led the Wolfpack with 27 points while Desmond Lee scored 24. Tyler Lewis poured in 15 and dished out six assists and Anthony Barber scored 13 off the bench. Warren finished as NC State’s leading rebounder with eight boards.

The Mountaineers shot 49.1 percent (28-of-47) from the floor but the Wolfpack torched the nets to the tune of 61.9 percent (39-of-63) including 5-of-11 from long range. NC State also finished with a 32-29 edge in rebounds and forced 15 Appalachian turnovers.

Appalachian State returns to action when it plays host to Campbell at 8 p.m. on Tuesday in the 2013-14 home opener and the second game of four in the Global Sports Shootout.

NOTES: The Mountaineers dropped to 1-11 all time against NC State… Appalachian was outscored 60-24 in the paint and 27-13 on the fast break but held an 11-9 edge in second-chance points… Baskin and Spagnolo both earned their first career starts… App State dropped to 50-39 all-time in season openers and 3-1 in season openers under head coach Jason Capel… the Apps are 5-71 all-time against the ACC.