Men's Basketball Hosts Appalachian State Sunday
GREENSBORO, N.C. – The UNCG men's basketball team wraps up its two-game home stretch Sunday afternoon as the Spartans host Southern Conference rival Appalachian State at the Greensboro Coliseum at 2 p.m. The game will be broadcast on 1320 WCOG AM, while a video and audio stream will be available online at www.uncgspartans.com.
The Spartans enters Sunday's game with a 7-17 overall record and a 5-8 mark in SoCon play. UNCG has dropped two straight games and four out of its last five games with losses to Elon, the College of Charleston, Wofford and Western Carolina. The Spartans rank second in the league in scoring, averaging 71.5 points per game and are 6-7 this season at home at the Greensboro Coliseum.
Junior guard Trevis Simpson (Douglas, Ga./Coffee) leads the team and the SoCon in scoring at 19.7 points per game. Simpson has scored in double figures 20 times, including nine games of at least 20 points. Senior Derrell Armstrong (Mechanicsville, Md./Allegany CC) is second on the team in scoring at 14.7 points per game and is second on the team on the glass at 4.8 rebounds per game. Armstrong is coming off a team-high 18 points in the loss Thursday night against Western Carolina.
Freshman forward Kayel Locke (Baltimore, Md./McDonogh) rounds out the Spartans in double figures as he averages 10.3 points per game. Sophomore Nicholas Paulos (Salt Lake City, Utah/New Hampton School) is second on the team with 46 three-pointers and is coming off a 16-point effort off the bench Thursday against the Catamounts.
Appalachian State enters Sunday's game with an 11-14 overall record and a 7-7 mark in SoCon play. The Mountaineers have dropped two out of their last three with losses at Davidson and Elon, surrounding a home win over Furman. Appalachian State is averaging 70.6 points per game but is allowing 72.8 points per game against.
Nathan Healy leads the team in scoring at 14.6 points per game while also grabbing 7.7 rebounds per game. Healy also leads the team with 44 three-pointers, 35 blocked shots and 50 steals. Jay Canty, a Greensboro native, is second on the team in scoring at 14.2 points per game and second on the team with 6.2 caroms per game. Canty has also dished out a team-high 66 assists.
Sunday's game marks the 40th meeting all-time between UNCG and Appalachian State. The Spartans trail the all-time series by an 18-21 margin and the two teams have split the last six meetings. Last year, the teams split the regular season with both home teams winning as the Mountaineers recorded a 78-64 victory in Boone before UNCG notched a 77-73 overtime win in Greensboro. Additionally, UNCG also eliminated the Mountaineers from the SoCon Tournament with a 65-55 victory in Asheville.
Earlier this season, Appalachian State posted an 83-70 victory at home over the Spartans. UNCG held a seven-point halftime lead at 39-32 but the Mountaineers scored the first 13 points of the second half on their way to an 18-2 run to start the half. Appalachian State out-scored the Spartans 51-31 as it connected on 62.5 percent from the field compared to just 38.5 percent for UNCG in the second half.
Simpson led the Spartans with 22 points in 27 minutes off the bench in his first game returning from a concussion. Simpson was 9-of-19 from the field but could only manage 1-of-7 from long range. Armstrong added 20 points and seven rebounds in the loss. ASU was led by Nathan Healy who scored 24 points and grabbed nine rebounds while Mike Neal added 19 points on the strength of nine-of-11 shooting from the free throw line.
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