BOONE (AP) — Zac Thomas passed for two touchdowns and ran for another as Appalachian State jumped to an early lead and held off Troy 21-10 to capture the Sun Belt Conference East Division crown on Saturday, ending the season on a four-game win streak.
With the win, the Mountaineers (9-2, 7-1) will host the inaugural Sun Belt championship game December 1, against West Division winner Louisiana (7-5, 5-3).
Thomas fired a 16-yard scoring pass to Corey Sutton and found Sutton again, this time from 15, and then added a 10-yard keeper on three consecutive possessions for an early 21-0 lead before Troy (9-3, 7-1) got on the board with a field goal.
Two of the touchdowns came on takeaways. Caleb Brown forced a fumble — and recovered it — when he tackled Troy receiver Blace Brown at midfield. Thomas moved the Mountaineers 50 yards in 11 plays, capped by his second TD toss to Sutton.
On the next play, Troy’s Deondre Douglas was hit by Austin Exford after a 10-yard pass and lost the ball, which was recovered by Anthony Flory. Thomas scored from the 10 five plays later.
Smith passed for 160 yards and a touchdown pass to Douglas
Appalachian State outgained the Trojans 314-232 in total yards.