Photo by Gerald Castillo
Texas State survives road thriller against Appalachian State
Texas State survived a back-and-forth thriller against Appalachian State on Saturday inside the Holmes Convocation Center in Boone, N.C.
The Bobcats completed their two-game road swing through the Carolinas with a 70-69 win over the Mountaineers.
Texas State (14-3, 3-1 Sun Belt) got off to a quick start against App State (5-12, 0-4) with three quick buckets, including a 3-pointer from senior forward Alex Peacock to take a 7-0 lead.
The Bobcats held control of the game with a 13-5 advantage after a jumper from junior guard Nijal Pearson. But the Mountaineers began chipping away at Texas State’s lead.
App State tied the game at 24-24 after two free throws from junior forward Isaac Johnson. The first half was tied three more times and the Mountaineers escaped the period with a 35-33 lead after a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from sophomore guard Justin Forrest.
The second half was a back-and-forth affair, featuring 13 lead changes and five ties. The Bobcats scored the first basket of the half with a layup from junior forward Eric Terry.
Texas State took its first lead of the half after Pearson scored on an off-balance shot and was awarded the And-1 opportunity. Pearson completed the old-fashion 3-point play to put the Bobcats on top, 42-41.
Both teams traded points and leads but the Bobcats saw themselves with a 55-48 lead after a 3-pointer from senior guard Tre Nottingham and four points from Terry.
But App State hacked away at Texas State’s lead until junior guard O’Showen Williams sank a shot from beyond the arc to give the Mountaineers a slim 57-56 advantage.
The ensuing 2:50 seconds featured five lead changes with the final score coming off a slam dunk from Bobcat junior guard Jaylen Shead, which gave Texas State a 66-63 lead.
The Bobcats went cold from the field in the final three minutes of the game, failing to convert a field goal. But they four clutch free throws from freshman guard Mason Harrell to put the game away.
Saturday’s 70-69 victory is only the second win Texas State has claimed in Boone, N.C. since joining the Sun Belt.
Pearson and Nottingham paced the Bobcats with 16 points each. Terry added 10 points and five rebounds. Redshirt freshman forward Alonzo Sule, Peacock and Shead recorded a team-high six rebounds apiece.
App State had four Mountaineers finish in double figures — Isaac Johnson (16), Forrest (12), senior forward Tyrell Johnson (12) and Williams (10).
Texas State returns to San Marcos for a two-game homestand against Little Rock on Thursday at 7 p.m. and Arkansas State on Saturday at 4 p.m. inside Strahan Arena.