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College football: App State hopes to turn it around

Things are not easy for Appalachian State in 2014. The Mountaineers had their share of close losses and not-so-close losses in the past month. The last was a 55-48 homecoming setback to Liberty on Oct. 11.

“It was a lot of frustration built up,” head coach Scott Satterfield said.

Rightfully so.

The Mountaineers went into Saturday’s game at Troy riding a four-game losing streak that started with a 21-20 loss at Southern Mississippi. It continued with a 34-14 defeat at the hands of fellow Sun Belt newcomer Georgia Southern. South Alabama, in just its sixth season, rolled App State 47-21 at Kidd-Brewer Stadium.

Then there was the loss to Liberty.

During that stretch, App State dug itself into holes with turnovers. The Mountaineers were the owners of a minus-6 turnover margin in those four losses. The Mountaineers had seven passes intercepted and lost four fumbles. The worst was the game against Liberty. Quarterback Taylor Lamb threw two interceptions, and the Flames recovered two of the Mountaineers’ three fumbles.

The tables turned Saturday against Troy. App State recovered two fumbles and got two interceptions on its way to a 53-14 victory.

“We hadn’t been doing that the last few weeks,” Satterfield said. “It was good to get back to playing great defense.”

The turn around on defense was necessary to get the win. The win was necessary to try to salvage the season.

“Hopefully, this will be something that will get us started for the second half of our season,” Satterfield said.

The transition up to the Football Bowl Subdivision has not been an easy one for App State, but there’s still a chance for the Mountaineers (2-5, 1-2) to finish over .500.

The combined records of their final five opponents is 12-20. Only Arkansas State (4-2) is above .500. Louisiana-Monroe and Louisiana-Lafayette have 3-3 overall records

The Mountaineers are off this week, and they return to action Nov. 1 at home against Georgia State.

Adam Houston: 704-797-4287; twitter.com/
AdamRHouston

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