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Monday, October 5, 2015

Appalachian State Mountaineers Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

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October 5, 2015 - kicker Zach Matics named Sun Belt Special Teams Player of the Week

"Matics kicked a career-long 51-yard field goal and picked up a critical first down with a six-yard run on a fake field goal to help lead Appalachian State to a 31-13 win over Wyoming. With less than 30 seconds to go and Appalachian State facing fourth-and-five from its own 24 yard line, Matics took an option pitch from holder Bentlee Critcher and picked up six yards for a first down on the fake field goal. One play later, the Mountaineers scored on an 18-yard touchdown pass to take a 21-7 halftime lead. In the fourth quarter, Matics closed the scoring for Appalachian State with the 51-yard field goal, which surpassed his previous career long by 20 yards." - Watauga Democrat

March 6, 2015 - spring specialists
"The Mountaineers will have a veteran punter returning in Bentlee Critcher, and coach Scott Satterfield said that kicker Zach Matics, who struggled last season, had a great spring – 'the best he’s ever had.' Satterfield said that sophomore Mason Moore might have the strongest leg and will be in the mix in the fall, along with incoming freshman Michael Rubino." - Winston-Salem Journal

February 4, 2015 - kicker Michael Rubino signs
"Rated as a two-star prospect by and 247Sports ... tabbed as the nation’s No. 8-ranked place kicker in the class of 2015 by 247Sports ... two-time Southwest Wake Athletic Conference Special Teams Player of the Year ... two-time first-team all-conference selection as a kicker and punter ... accounted for 71 points with 50 extra points and seven field goals and averaged 43.2 yards per punt as a senior in 2014 ... made 12 field goals, sent 31-of-62 kickoffs into the end zone for touchbacks and averaged 36 yards per punt with 20 downed inside the 20 yard line as a junior in 2013 ... Middle Creek recovered six of his 14 onside-kick attempts in ‘13 ... four-time academic all-conference honoree ... coached by Michael Castellano ... chose Appalachian State over Penn State and East Carolina." - Mountaineers

November 8, 2014 - Bentlee Critcher kicks five field goals, including game winner, over Louisiana-Monroe
Critcher, a sophomore, calmly shook off an attempt by Louisiana-Monroe to ice him by drilling a 39-yard game-winning field goal Saturday at Kidd Brewer Stadium. His field goal gave the Mountaineers a 31-29 victory over Monroe, App State’s third straight win. Critcher was a perfect 5-for-5 in his kicks Saturday. He made all four of his extra point tries and the field goal. 'When they called timeout, back on the sidelines when I came back out there I thought they had two more timeouts,' Critcher said. 'I took my steps back and I was expecting them to call another timeout. I looked at (holder) Simms (McElfresh) and gave him the head nod and before I knew it, the ball was flying back there and I said, ‘It’s game time.’ I went up there and gave it my best shot'.... Critcher missed a key kick against Liberty, but said he wasn’t thinking about that kick as the Mountaineers’ offense drove closer to the Monroe end zone. 'I tried no to,' Critcher said. 'I knew that when (Monroe) drove down the field and scored as soon as that happened I knew I was going to get another shot at this. You can either embrace it, so I tried to get all of the thoughts out of my head.' Critcher got some pre-kick encouragement from defensive coordinator Nate Woody, a coach known for his firey temperament with his defense. 'Coach Woody came to me and said stay strong-minded,' Critcher said. 'I was trying to get my mind right because I knew it was going to come down to it'." - Watauga Democrat

October 10, 2014 - punter  will also kick
"Bentlee Critcher, Appalachian State’s punter, will now handle field-goal duties, Coach Scott Satterfield said this week.The Mountaineers have had issues on field-goal attempts this season, with blocks and misses. Satterfield said that he’ll go with Critcher in lieu of Zach Matics 'just because he gets the ball up. Whether they go in or not, at least we’ll have an opportunity to watch it have a chance to go in,' Satterfield said. 'I’m tired of getting them blocked. Bentlee has kicked field goals well in practice. Zach does extra points well, other than one at Southern Miss they’re all down the middle and up. It’s the field goals. We’re 1 for 5 right now. We’re not helping ourselves at all with that. And Bentlee kicked off great Saturday, kicking deep in the end zone. So we’ll use him and see if we can get some better results'." -Winston-Salem Journal 

September 6, 2014 - kicker/ punter Michael Rubino commits
"Middle Creek High School kicker and punter Michael Rubino made his college decision on Saturday. According to his high school, Rubino verbally committed to Appalachian State University. The Mountaineers offered a scholarship to Rubino in July. They were the first school to extend an offer to the senior. Last season, Rubino was an all-conference kicker and punter in the Southwest Wake Athletic Conference, and he was named the league's Special Teams Player of the Year." - HighSchoolOT

August 24, 2014 - summer specialists
Bentlee Critcher ranked fifth among all Division I punters with a 45.9-yard average as a walk-on freshman. In one game alone, he had eight punts of more than 50 yards. Those numbers will be hard to top, but special-teams’ coach Mark Ivey said that if Critcher doesn’t it won’t be for lack of effort. Ivey said that Critcher, a sophomore, has worked to be even better. 'He placed the ball well for us, as far as what we wanted for our coverage, and he’s worked on being even more consistent with that,' Ivey said. 'He’s also worked on getting the ball off even quicker to alleviate any possibility of a blocked punt, and I think he’s gotten better at that. The thing you don’t want to do is get off so quick that you give up your power. The thing he’s worked on all summer is getting the ball off quicker but with the same power.' Junior Zach Matics will again handle kickoffs for the Mountaineers and will take over for graduated Drew Steward as the field-goal and extra-point specialist. 'Zach has had a great camp,' Ivey said. 'He’s been very accurate (in scrimmages), and he’s continued to get better in terms of distance. There’s no doubt he has the leg strength to be a top-shelf Division I kicker.' Ivey said that Matics has worked to become more consistent with hang time and depth on kickoffs.... Both of the deep snappers return. Senior Brett Heimrich will handle field-goal and extra-point snaps again, and sophomore Will Walker will handle punt snaps. Senior Logan Hallock, the No. 3 quarterback, also returns as the holder on place-kicks." - Winston-Salem Journal

August 9, 2014 - intrasquad scrimmage
"Junior place kicker Zach Matics (Jacksonville, N.C./Southwest-Onslow) was perfect on four field-goal attempts (41, 40, 51 and 34 yards)." - Go Blue Ridge

May 3, 2014 - kicker Stephen Bridges signs
"Christ School senior Stephen Bridges has accepted a preferred walk-on position with the Appalachian State football team. Bridges was an NCISAA Division II all-state kicker for the Greenies in 2014 as well as a member of their boys soccer team. He then won a NCISAA 3-A wrestling championship at 220 pounds in February with a first period pin. Bridges' hometown is Morganton." - Citizen-Times

April 4, 2014 - spring game
"The offense also got 36- and 34-yard field goals from Zach Matics and a 46-yarder from [punter] Bentlee Critcher." - Mountaineers

March 29, 2014 - final spring scrimmage
"The offense also got 42- and 37-yard field goals from junior kicker Zach Matics." - Mountaineers 

March 22, 2014 - spring scrimmage
Field Goals: Moore 1-1 (40); Matics 0-1 (37); PAT: Matics 2-2
- Mountaineers

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