Women’s Hoops Drops Quarterfinals to Elon in SoCon Tourney
March 10, 2014. Down eight points with less than nine minutes to play, Appalachian State University women’s basketball rallied to take a one-point lead with 3:07 to go, but could not hang on as it was bounced by Elon, 59-56, in the quarterfinals of the Southern Conference Tournament on Saturday at Kimmel Arena.
The No. 4 Mountaineers (13-16, 10-8 SoCon) had one final shot to tie the No. 5 Phoenix (15-15, 10-8), but a desperation three fromMaryah Sydnor (Radford, Va./Radford) fell short as Elon advanced to Sunday’s semifinals where it will face No. 1 Chattanooga.
Appalachian, which led for the vast majority of the first half, entered the locker room trailing 21-20 after Kelsey Harris scored with 22 seconds in the opening period to put the Phoenix up.
The Mountaineers regained the lead early in the second half (30-27) with 14:58 remaining when Elon mounted a 14-3 run over the next five and a half minutes to jump out to a 41-33 lead, its largest of the day.
The Phoenix run started when Kelsey Harris connected on a layup with 14:44 on the clock and was capped off by Jessica Farmer’s jumper at the 8:51 mark.
Despite the eight-point deficit, App State never gave up and slowly began chipping away at Elon’s lead, cutting the deficit to one point (41-40) when Jessica Barrios connected on a pair of free throws with 7:44 to play to cap off a 7-0 run.
From there the two teams traded blows as the Mountaineers grabbed the lead (47-46) when KeKe Cooper (Moore, S.C./Dorman) hit a layup three minutes later. Elon responded with a bucket to go back ahead before Sydnor hit a pair of foul shots to give Appalachian its final lead of the day (49-48) with just over three minutes to go.
The Phoenix jumped back out in front on its next possession and, though Appalachian State was able to cut the deficit to one point twice in the final minute, hung on for its first-ever tournament win over the Mountaineers.
Sydnor scored 16 points and grabbed five rebounds while finishing 9-of-10 from the charity stripe while Katie Mallow (Snellville, Ga./Brookwood) finished with 15 points and tied her career-high with seven assists. Cooper poured in 11 points and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds.
Elon finished with three double-digit scorers as Harris and Lauren Brown each scored 14 and Farmer added 10 off the bench. Harris also hauled in nine rebounds and dished out three assists.
The Mountaineers were held to just 33.9 percent (19-of-56) from the floor while the Phoenix shot 43.1 percent (25-of-58) and pulled down 45 rebounds compared to Appalachian’s 30.
NOTES: Appalachian State fell to 30-25 all-time at the SoCon Tournament including a 5-9 mark in the quarterfinals… the loss marked the first time since 2008 that the Mountaineers dropped their tournament opener… freshman Mia Marshall (Lilburn, Ga./Parkview) came away with a career-high three blocks… Appalachian fell to 2-1 when facing Elon in the league tournament… Saturday’s game marked the Mountaineers’ final appearance as a member of the SoCon as it will move to the Sun Belt next season… App State dropped to 24-11 all-time against the Phoenix.
Men’s Hoops Drops Tournament Opener to Samford
March 10, 2014. Appalachian State University men’s basketball saw its season come to an end in a 70-56 loss to eighth-seeded Samford on Friday in the first round of the 2014 Southern Conference Tournament.
The No. 9 Mountaineers (9-21, 5-11 SoCon) led by as many as five points in the opening 10 minutes, but the Bulldogs (13-19, 6-10) caught fire in the closing stages of the first half, taking a 20-18 lead with 7:15 on the clock and never trailed again.
After Samford scored on the game’s opening possession, Appalachian scored six-straight points to take a 6-2 lead on Ty Toney’s(Alpharetta, Ga./Alpharetta) fastbreak layup with 15:29 to go and pushed the lead to as many as five points (13-8) with 12:53 on the clock.
The Bulldogs were able to rally, however, and grabbed a 17-15 lead four and a half minutes later. Tab Hamilton (Winston-Salem, N.C./Fishburne Military) was able to put the Mountaineers back in front when he connected from beyond the arc with eight minutes to go to make it 18-17.
Appalachian’s lead would be short-lived as Samford responded with a three from Connor Miller and never trailed again en route to its first win at the league tournament since 2009.
Although the Mountaineers were able to tie the game at 31-31 on Michael Obacha’s (Edo State, Nigeria/High Point Christian) layup early in the second half, the Bulldogs responded with a 15-4 run to push its lead to double digits (46-35) with 13:13 to play.
The Apps were able to cut the deficit to just six points (57-51) with 5:19 on the clock, but Samford scored 13 of the final 18 points as it advanced to play No. 1 Davidson in Saturday’s quarterfinal round.
Five Mountaineers scored in double figures as Hamilton and Frank Eaves (Greensboro, N.C./Page) each tallied 11 points and Obacha, Toney and Tommy Spagnolo (West Jefferson, N.C./Ashe County) all poured in 10. Obacha also led the squad with nine rebounds while Spagnolo ripped down eight of his own.
Samford was led by Tim Williams who finished with 21 points and 11 rebounds, both game highs, while Michael Bradley added 14 and Miller scored 11.
Appalachian shot 39.2 percent (20-of-51) from the floor and was just 2-of-14 from long range while the Bulldogs connected on 43.9 percent (25-of-57) of their shots. Samford pulled down 37 rebounds to App State’s 33 and forced 15 Mountaineer turnovers.
NOTES: Appalachian fell to 42-41 all-time in the SoCon Tournament… Friday’s game was Appalachian’s last as a member of the SoCon as it will play in the Sun Belt Conference next season… the loss marked the first time since 2008 that the Mountaineers lost their opening game of the league tournament… App State dropped to 10-4 all-time in the first round of the SoCon Tournament… the contest marked the first time Appalachian and Samford had ever played each other in the SoCon Tournament… the Mountaineers dropped to 8-5 all-time against the Bulldogs.