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Kicking game kills App State in 20-19 loss to Wake Forest

App State had their chances but couldn’t quite seal the deal.

Wake Forest v Appalachian State Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images

Oh, how the memories of the close call on Rocky Top ring again in Boone. Once again Appalachian State had a Power 5 team on the ropes, this time at home, but it was not meant to be as Wake Forest blocked a potential game-winning field goal with just 10 seconds to win the game. Just like the UT game a season ago the leg of Michael Rubino became the downfall for the Mountaineers. Rubino was 2-of-4 today with a missed field goal and the aforementioned blocked kick.

Rubino after the Tennessee became a really dependable kicker as the 2016 season progressed but once again in a close game against a P5 school he had a very rough day. There is no denying how bad this game hurts the App State faithful but our "Ring Quest" Sun Belt hopes are still alive.

The Appalachian defense played a great game as they held a high powered Wake offense in check for the most part and gave Appalachian the chance to win the game late. Wake only managed 18 first downs to go with 344 yards of offense. Wake QB John Wolford went 14/27 for 176 yards and 2 touchdowns. Wolford was also the leading rusher for Wake with 13 carries for 77 yards.

Taylor Lamb was a strong 26/50 for 372 yards and 2 touchdowns. Jalin Moore was once again quiet for the App offense as he was held to just 27 yards on 16 carries. Terrence Upshaw was the leading rusher again for Appalachian State with 86 yards on 15 carries. One has to wonder if Upshaw will take the starting spot from this point forward as he has had the better year by far here in 2017.

Freshman wide reciver Thomas Hennigan made a tramendous one handed catch to help keep App States hopes alive. Hennigan finished with five receptions for 74 yards, second to T.J. Watkins who had three grabs for 102 yards and a touchdown.

This game will sting much like the Tennessee game for a long time for the Mountaineer faithful as the App-Wake series is always a hard fought matchup. The atmosphere was incredible.

Appalachian State will now drop to 2-2 on the season and head into the bye week before they comeback at home October 7th to take on the Aggies of New Mexico State.