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Emily Carver
Emily Carver had 14 points to pace the Mountaineers.
photo courtesy of Appalachian State Athletics

App State Women’s Basketball Edged out by Undefeated Marquette

The App State women’s basketball team battled against a tough Marquette team on Sunday. The Mountaineers (5-5 (0-0 SBC)) fell short to the No. 19 Golden Eagles (11-0 (1-0 Big East)) 99-91 in Milwaukee.

“Going into today’s game it was really important to challenge our team to respond from the other night. We talked about it and broke it down, so it was really about us. I thought our players answered the call,” said head coach Angel Elderkin. “There’s certain things we do that we need to do night in and night out. I thought our level of toughness and our level of fight was exactly the expectation. We didn’t walk out of Marquette with a win, but we took a step in our process and that’s really what our non-conference schedule is about. Can we continue to develop our identity and become the best team that we can be come March.”

Six of eight Mountaineers who saw playing time scored double-figures, led by senior Faith Alston and junior Emily Carver, who each netted 19 points. In addition to her 19 points, Alston dished out a career and team-high 10 assists to record her first double-double on the season. She also pulled down five rebounds and shot a perfect 8-of-8 from the line.

Sophomore Rylan Moffitt netted 13 points, shooting a perfect 6-of-6 from the field, and pulled down five rebounds. Fellow Sophomore Alexis Black and freshman MaKenzie Drout each netted 12 points on the afternoon, which was a season-high for Black and career-high for Drout. Junior Samantha LaFon pulled down a team-high seven rebounds, matching her career-high, which was set last season.

App State recorded 19 fastbreak points, 18 points off the bench, and 14 points off turnovers.

A jumper from junior J’Mani Ingram tied things up at 2-2 early in the first quarter. As Marquette jumped to a 12-6 lead, the Mountaineers went on a 10-0 run that included a pair of freebies from Ingram, a pair of Carver treys, and a Carver layup to lead, 16-12. The Mountaineers maintained a steady edge building off jumpers from Ingram, Carver and junior Zada Porter, a layup from Moffitt, and trey from Alston to lead 27-24 at the close of the period.

Moffitt opened the second quarter with a layup in the paint to extend App State’s lead to 29-24. The Golden Eagles caught up at 29 all, and took a 34-29 lead. A jumper from Ingram and a pair of layups from Moffitt gave the Mountaineers a 35-34 edge, but Marquette answered with a 11-0 run to build a 10-point deficit (45-35). The Mountaineers worked to keep pace with the Golden Eagles, as Drout drained a pair of jumpers and Moffitt drilled a jumper of her own. At the half, App State trailed Marquette, 51-41.

The Mountaineers worked to close the deficit in the third quarter, but the Golden Eagles kept the Black and Gold at arm’s length. A trio of jumpers from Carver, Ingram, and Alston cut Marquette’s lead to 72-66. A pair of freebies from Alston bought the Mountaineers within six (74-68) at the close of the third quarter.

App State found a spark at the start of the fourth quarter as Black knocked down a 3-point bucket and Alston drained a jumper to cut the Golden Eagles’ lead to one (74-73). Marquette answered with a 6-0 run (80-73). Jumpers from LaFon and Alston brought the Mountaineers back within three (80-77). With under a minute left and Marquette leading 96-86, Alston made a pair of freebies. Black completed a three-point play to cut the deficit to 98-91, but Marquette took the win, 99-91.

The Mountaineers return to Boone to host Mercer at noon on Dec. 21. Fans are encouraged to wear their favorite holiday sweater and Santa will also be visiting the Holmes Center concourse. The Mountaineers will also be giving away App State Basketball tree ornaments.