BOONE, N.C. – App State trailed by one at halftime, but completely dominated the second half of an 81-49 rout of Winston-Salem State on Monday at the Holmes Convocation Center.
Trailing 32-31 after a first half in which the Mountaineers shot 28.2% from the field, App State (3-2) outscored the Rams (3-2) by a 50-17 margin over the last 20 minutes of the contest.
“Our team grades themselves at half on their performance, and then we talk about it, and we leave the locker room on the same page,” App State head coach Angel Elderkin said. “They knew that we weren’t us. Credit to Winston-Salem State for playing a really good first half, coming in here super inspired to knock us off. I thought we got a really good response from our team.”
Elderkin’s squad got to the free throw line early and often in the second half, including 14 attempts in the third quarter as its lead bloomed to double-digits after a 9-0 run that featured baskets by Michaela Porter, Alexia Allesch and Faith Alston, as well as made free throws by Alston and Emily Carver.
“We shoot a lot of three’s, and when they’re not falling, it’s not to our advantage, but we’ve got to have another weapon,” Elderkin said. “I just challenged them to continue to get to the paint, use shot fakes and really crash the glass.”
The fourth quarter was even more dominant – won 26-7 by the home team – as the Mountaineers drained five of their season-high 12 3-pointers in the period.
Alston and Janay Sanders paced App State with 15 points apiece. Carver added 10 points, and Brooke Bigott scored eight to go with a team-high 10 rebounds.
App State outrebounded Winston-Salem State 53-41, and the Mountaineers held the visitors to just 4-of-22 field goals (18.2%) in the second half.
The Rams, who play in the CIAA in the Division II ranks, got a game-high 17 points from Melody Prichard, including 13 in the first half. As a team, their first half featured 42.9% shooting from the field.
App State’s 81 points and 53 rebounds were both season highs, and the Mountaineers remained perfect at home this season at 3-0.
The Mountaineers are back on the road Wednesday for a 7 p.m. against the Duke Blue Devils, televised on ACC Network Extra.