Logan’s career day leads to victory

Guard+Emarius+Logan+finished+the+game+with+a+career+high+21+points.%0APhoto+Courtesy%3A+App+State+Athletics

Guard Emarius Logan finished the game with a career high 21 points. Photo Courtesy: App State Athletics

Colt Jensen

After a thrilling overtime victory over James Madison University last week, the Appalachian State Mountaineers (5-6) continued the momentum to a 16-0 run over Hampton (2-9) to start the game, and never looked back as they turned that fast start into a 21-point 88-67 victory over the Pirates.

Not only did Appalachian State start the game on the fast run, but within the first six minutes of the game, all five Mountaineer starters hit at least one 3-point shot.

“I thought we were a little too relaxed in warming up so we addressed that. Our leaders took the team and said we have to focus, and because of that job that our leaders did we able to get our shots and get stops,” head coach Jim Fox said. “That leads to great momentum and we had that from the beginning.”  

Five bench players subbed in for the Mountaineer starters after the game’s first six minutes and after the substitution, the second unit outscored Hampton 7-2.

The bench punctuated their time on the court with a monster slam dunk from redshirt junior Craig Hinton to give the Mountaineers a 26-11 lead with 10 players already with playing time.

“I have great faith in our bench,” Fox said. “When the media timeout didn’t happen for six minutes, we did hockey a thing going five in and five out.”

After the strong play from the starters and second unit helping Appalachian to a 35-13 lead at the five minute mark, Hampton, a team who only returned nine players and one starter from last year’s conference championship and NCAA tournament team, inevitably rallied and cut into the lead as the half ended cutting the lead to 39-23.  

The second half got off to a slow start as two quick turnovers and a shooting foul helped Hampton go on a mini 6-2 to start the half. At that point the Mountaineers lead was 12, and the game would never get much closer.

Sophomore guard Emarius Logan hit his first of three 3-point shots that he would make in the second half. Logan scored a career best 21 points and started the night off by hitting four straight 3-pointers to finish five-for-seven from 3-point range, six-for-eight from the field and 100 percent from the free throw line with three assists to zero turnovers.

“After last game we talked about his role, and he’s got to be our quarterback,” Fox said. “But, tonight he was on fire making shots, and he’s a heck of a player. I was proud of our guys, and especially Emarius.”

Appalachian added 10 second half assists, totalling 20 for the game, and also shot 20 free throws, making 16 of them, in the second half which helped them put away the Pirates for good.

Logan wasn’t the only player that had a career night. Junior forward Griffin Kinney also had his first career double double and made the first three of his college career.

Logan and Kinney were part of five Mountaineers who scored in double figures, and a Mountaineer’s squad that outrebounded Hampton 35-26.

When asked about whether the three or double-double was more exciting, Kinney laughed saying the 3-pointer was “a long time coming.”

For the game Appalachian shot 50 percent from the field and 48 percent from three, not letting the fact that Christmas break would begin immediately after the game to distract them.

“We knew were going home after the game, so we were kind of coasting at first,” Logan said. “We just had to click in, and think ‘just two more hours.’ So, let’s get this win and go home happy instead of going home after a loss.”

App will look to carry the momentum from their two game winning streak into conference play as they prepare for their first conference showdown at Texas State on New Year’s Eve.

“Conference is a new season, and we play Texas State,” Kinney said. “We are gonna focus on that game, and then the next game after that.”

Story By: Colt Jensen, Sports Reporter