The Charlotte 49ers (2-2) were shut down by Appalachian State’s (4-3) defense as they fell 64-55.
Jordan Shepherd led the Niners with a season-high 19 points and six assists. Drew Edwards and Cooper Robb each registered eight points apiece.
Appalachian State had two players score in double figures led by O’Showen Williams’ 18 points. Adrian Delph added 15 points.
It was a slow start offensively for both teams as they were playing aggressive defense to start the game. The 49ers recorded two turnovers on their first two possessions. The 49ers didn’t score their first basket until the 16:28 mark to give them a 3-2 lead on a Shepherd three. With Appalachian State holding a 10-7 lead with 11:25 left in the first half, the Mountaineers went on an 18-2 run to take a 28-9 lead at the 3:26 mark. Robb and Malik Martin made back-to-back threes to cut the deficit to 15, 30-15. Robb was fouled shooting a three pointer with one second remaining and hit two out of three free throws before the first half ended with the Mountaineers holding a 30-17 lead.
The 49ers started the second half on a 4-0 run as they trailed 30-21 with 18:21 remaining. Then, Appalachian State quickly pushed their lead back to double-digits. Edwards connected on three straight free throws getting the 49ers back within nine points with 13:24 left in the second half. Appalachian State led by 18 points with 7:32 remaining in regulation. Charlotte went on a 5-0 run as they cut the deficit to 13 points at the 4:21 mark. The 49ers were making a late push as they trailed 59-52 with 49 seconds left after a driving layup by Shepherd. Robb hit a three-pointer as the 49ers cut into the lead late at 61-55, but the Mountaineers made free throws down the stretch to hold the 49ers off.
Appalachian State forced Charlotte into 37 percent shooting from the field and forced 17 turnovers.
“It was a tough start,” Charlotte 49ers Head Coach Ron Sanchez said. “Credit to Appalachian State, they came out like their hair was on fire defensively. They did a good job running their offense and defense. For us to get buckets against them we would need to execute our offense and we were not sharp offensively or defensively. This is another opportunity for us to grow.”
The Charlotte 49ers head to Atlanta, Ga. to play Georgia State on Wednesday, November 27 at 2 p.m.