Saturday, December 7, 2019

App State Wins Fourth Straight Sun Belt Title With 45-38 Win Over Louisiana

BOONE – After racing out to an early 21-0 first-quarter lead, the Appalachian State Mountaineers held on to win their fourth consecutive Sun Belt Conference championship, holding off a furious late rally by Louisiana and winning 45-38. Junior running back Darrynton Evans was named the game’s most valuable player for the second straight year after today’s three-touchdown performance.

Appalachian State is now 2-0 in Sun Belt Championship games
(Photo Credit: Brian Barnes)

With the win, the Mountaineers became the first #NCCFB FBS program to post a twelve-win season. Of the ten instances of a North Carolina program winning eleven games in a season, Appalachian State is responsible for three of them (in the Mountaineers' six FBS seasons). In their conference, Appalachian State is responsible for three of the four eleven-win seasons in Sun Belt history.

The Mountaineers forced three turnovers on the day, two fumbles (recovered by EJ Scott and Desmond Franklin) and one pick-six by Josh Thomas. “When I caught it, I saw the linemen, and I just tried to run away from them as fast as I could…making plays like that, it all happened so fast, it was just a blur. It's one moment at Kidd Brewer that I needed, and it was great,” Thomas said after the game.

Notable North Carolinians
Akeem Davis-Gaither (Thomasville) – the senior linebacker, in his last home game as a Mountaineer, led the defense with ten tackles, including four solo
Noel Cook (Reidsville) – the senior linebacker, also playing his last home game in an App State uniform, had a forced fumble to go along with four tackles and two quarterback hurries
EJ Scott (Farmville Central) – the senior defensive end had seven tackles to go along with a forced fumble and recovery

Noteworthy Notes
Appalachian State is 43-7 in its 50 games against Sun Belt teams, and it improved to 8-0 in the series with Louisiana.
The Mountaineers increased their season total to sixty-nine touchdowns, tying the Sun Belt season record.

Up Next
By virtue of winning the Sun Belt championship, Appalachian State earned a berth in the New Orleans Bowl against a yet-to-be-determined opponent from Conference USA.