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Kennesaw State rallies late to defeat Mountaineers, 71-67

By David Rogers. BOONE, N.C. — Just like cattle form a herd, a grouping of owls is called a “parliament.” At the Holmes Convocation Center on Nov. 19, it was a parliament of Owls from visiting Kennesaw State that ruled the roost, defeating the Appalachian State men’s basketball team, 71-67.

With just over three minutes remaining, the Mountaineers led by seven points but they could not close out the Owls by game’s end. When the Owls’ Chris Youngblood finished a fast break with a slam dunk and 2:24 left on the clock, there was a sense of statement: Kennesaw State was not going quietly into the night without a fight.

Mountaineer guard Xavion Brown came off the bench to contribute 3 points, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks and a steal on Nov. 19 vs. Kennesaw State at the Holmes Convocation Center. Photographic image by David Rogers

The second game in as many days of the 3-day, Mountaineer MTE Tournament with a 4-team, round robin format (the Mountaineers lost Friday’s game vs. Campbell, 58-63 and will play Southeastern Louisiana on Sunday, 2:30 p.m.), it provided much that the first game didn’t, namely scoring in the early goinng by both teams. And where App State trailed throughout its matchup with the Campbell Fighting Camels until late in the second half, the game against Kennesaw State was much more of a back and forth affair throughout. There were seven lead changes and the score was knotted eight times during the 40 minutes of play.

The Owls’ starting guard, Terrell Burden, captured the game’s high scoring honors with 19 points. Forward Demond Robinson chipped in 10 points for the visitors from suburban Atlanta, while guard Brandon Stroud added 12 points — but also pulled down 10 rebounds. App State’s Donovan Gregory and Terence Harcum shared team-high scoring honors, with 13 apiece.

Yosef was his normal entertaining self, delighting the young ‘uns on Nov. 19 at the Holmes Convocation Center during Appalachian State’s game against Kennesaw State. Photographic image by David Rogers

Tight Finish

With 37 seconds left, it was one of Stroud’s defensive rebounds on an errant Mountaineer shot that all but iced the game when he was immediately fouled. He made good on two free throws, pushing the Owls out to a two-possession, 5-point lead.

App State’s Terence Harcum drove to the basket for a layup and was fouled in the process. It turned into a 3-point play with the made basket and free throw, shrinking the deficit to 67-65, but the Mountaineers had to foul quickly to get the ball back with hopes that whoever they fouled would miss their free throws. That didn’t happen as first KSU’s Spencer Rodgers made both of his attempts and then Burden finished it off with a pair of free throws with just eight seconds remaining to put the Owls up by the final score.

App State’s Donovan Gregory (11) looks to drive the lane on Nov. 19 vs. Kennesaw State at the Holmes Convocation Center. Photographic image by David Rogers

After the game, Mountaineer head coach aptly described, “A tough ending to a hard fought game against Kennesaw State. They are very well coached and I think they are going to win a lot of games this year… I am disappointed in our execution down the stretch and not being able to finish that game out.”

He added that 17 turnovers and some of them at crucial moments in the game is “… not going to get it done.”

App State will try to redeem itself on Sunday (Nov. 20) in the third game of the weekend series against Southeastern Louisiana. In its first two games of the weekend format, the Lions lost on Friday, 72-68, to Kennesaw State before defeating Campbell on Saturday, 70-69. Kennesaw State and Campbell will play the curtain raiser on Sunday, with tipoff at 12 noon.

SELECTED TEAM STATS

  • Field Goal % – KSU 44%, APP 47%
  • 3-Pt % – KSU 47%, APP 42%
  • Free Throw % – KSU 65%, APP 80%
  • Turnovers – KSU 10, APP 17
  • Total Rebounds – KSU 34, APP 31
  • Bench Points – KSU 13, APP 29
  • Points in the Paint – KSU 30, APP 18
  • Fast Break Points – KSU 14, APP 5
  • Blocks – KSU 1, APP 8
  • Steals – KSU 8, APP 6
  • Time with Lead – KSU 18:01, APP 16:08

LEADING SCORERS

  • KSU Terrell Burden (19)
  • APP Donovan Gregory (13)
  • APP Terence Harcum (13)
  • KSU Brandon Stroud (12)
  • KSU Demond Robinson (10)

LEADING REBOUNDERS

  • KSU Brandon Stroud (10)
  • APP Justin Abson (8)
  • APP Xavion Brown (5)

LEADING BLOCKS

  • APP Justin Abson (4)

 

 

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