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J'Mani Ingram
J'Mani Ingram had a career high 20 points to lead the Mountaineers.
photo courtesy of Appalachian State Athletics

Appalachian State Women’s Basketball Bows Out of Sun Belt Tournament

The App State women’s basketball team fell short to No. 1 seed Marshall, 116-74, in the quarterfinal round of the Sun Belt Women’s Basketball Championship on Friday.

App State (17-15) ended up going 10-10 in games against Sun Belt foes during the 2023-24 season, following a 9-9 regular season with a tournament win against Georgia State earlier in the week.

Junior J’Mani Ingram led the Mountaineers on Friday by netting 20 points, a total that was three points shy of her career high. Junior Emily Carver, fifth-year senior Taylor Lewis, and sophomore Alexis Black scored 10 points apiece. Carver accounted for three of the Mountaineers’ five treys on the day.

App State’s top rebounder was sophomore Rylan Moffitt, who pulled down nine rebounds. Carver and senior Faith Alston combined for eight of the Mountaineers’ 12 assists. App State held Marshall to nine second-chance points, compared to the Black and Gold’s 18.

“I just want to start off by crediting Marshall,” App State head coach Angel Elderkin said. “They’ve been elite this season at turning people over, shooting the 3 and rebounding the basketball. Those are three things that we talked about controlling today in the game, but they came in and played through their identity, turning us over specifically in the first half and then shooting the 3-ball. In our half-court defense, we were really trying to take that 3 away, but when we were turning it over and they were allowed to get loose in transition, it just really hurt us. I’m disappointed in our composure.

“You know, Marshall’s been a team that will break you in the fourth quarter, and I thought we broke in the first. It was really hard to put our pieces back together. I felt like that’s what I was trying to do the entire game. But again, credit to them for their season and for their game plan today.”

Alston put the Mountaineers on the board early with a jumper before the Thundering Herd took control with a 9-0 run. Midway through the quarter, App State cut the deficit to two at 13-11, building off layups from Moffitt and Lewis, a Carver trey, and a jumper from Ingram, but Marshall found momentum with another pair of runs, capping the first quarter with a 34-15 lead. Ingram and graduate student Mariah Frazier combined for eight points, and Black sank a late trey in the second quarter, but Marshall’s momentum carried it to a 62-27 lead at the half.

App State kept pace with Marshall in the third quarter, scoring 25 points to Marshall’s 27. Carver led the team with seven points in the period, while Black and Ingram combined for 11 points. Back-to-back treys from Carver and Lewis, followed by a fastbreak jumper from Black, marked the Mountaineers’ biggest run of the game late in the period.

In the fourth and final quarter, App State caused six Marshall turnovers. Ingram netted six points, draining two shots from the field and going 2-of-2 from the line. Despite the Mountaineers’ efforts, Marshall advanced to Saturday’s semifinal round.

Full Championship Schedule & Results
Tuesday, March 5 | First Round
Game 1 – (12) Georgia Southern 72, (13) Texas State 70
Game 2 – (11) Coastal Carolina 79, (14) South Alabama 60

Wednesday, March 6 | Second Round
Game 3 – (9) App State 73, (8) Georgia State 68
Game 4 – (5) ULM 78, (12) Georgia Southern 57
Game 5 – (6) Southern Miss 70, (11) Coastal Carolina 53
Game 6 – (7) Louisiana 54, (10) Arkansas State 41

Friday, March 8 | Quarterfinals
Game 7 – (1) Marshall 116, (9) App State 74
Game 8 – (4) Old Dominion vs. (5) ULM – 2:00 p.m. CT (3:00 p.m. ET)
Game 9 – (3) James Madison vs. (6) Southern Miss – 5:00 p.m. CT (6:00 p.m. ET)
Game 10 – (2) Troy vs. (7) Louisiana – 7:30 p.m. CT (8:30 p.m. ET)

Sunday, March 10 | Semifinals
Game 11 – (1) Marshall vs. Winner Game 8 – 11:30 a.m. CT (12:30 p.m. ET)
Game 12 – Winner Game 9 vs. Winner Game 10 – 2:00 p.m. CT (3:00 p.m. ET)

Monday, March 11 | Championship
Game 13 – Winner Game 11 vs. Winner Game 12 – 1:00 p.m. CT (2:00 p.m. ET)