Blogs > The Full-Court Press

Welcome back to the Trentonian's Full-Court Press blog. Yes, we're still alive, and with the 2015-16 season rapidly approaching, it's time to fire up the old blog for another season. Check back here throughout the year for updates on all things Rider and Princeton, including coverage of both the MAAC and Ivy League. Feel free to drop me a line on twitter @kj_franko ( or email

Tuesday, December 31, 2013


Monday, December 30, 2013

Rider storms back to beat Penn

Danny Stewart had 18 points and 10 rebounds in win over Penn. Gregg Slaboda Photo.

LAWRENCEVILLE — Anthony Myles may not have started the game, but he finished it with a bang.

The senior guard drained a 3-pointer with 26.1 seconds remaining and Rider erased a 14-point second-half deficit to end 2013 in style with an 89-88 victory over Penn Sunday afternoon at Alumni Gymnasium.

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Who: Princeton Tigers (9-2) vs. Kent State Golden Flashes (9-3)
When/Where: 12 p.m., Tuesday Dec. 31, Jadwin Gym.
Coverage: Ivy League Digital Network, WPRB 103.3
Coaches: Princeton – Mitch Henderson (third season, 46-25 overall). Kent State – Rob Senderoff (third season, 51-26 overall)

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Saturday, December 28, 2013

RIDER GAMEDAY: Broncs host Penn in final non-league game

Who: Penn (2-7) at Rider (5-5)

When: Noon, Sunday, Alumni Gymnasium

TV: The Comcast Network

Radio: 107.7 FM The Bronc

Last Time Out: Rider lost to Villanova, 88-67; Penn lost to Marist, 76-62

Series History: Rider leads 2-1

Background: Expect overtime.

All three of the meetings between the two schools have gone to an extra session with the Quakers winning the most recent game, 78-72, during the 2011-12 season.

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Sunday, December 22, 2013

Villanova shows class, pulls away from Rider

Rider's Danny Stewart gets tangled up with Villanova's Daniel Ochefu. AP Photo

 VILLANOVA, Pa. — Losing to the No. 8-ranked team in the country isn’t what bothered Rider coach Kevin Baggett.

Instead, it was the way the game got away from his team in the second half.

A 14-point halftime deficit quickly turned into an insurmountable Villanova lead in what eventually was an 88-67 loss for the Broncs Saturday afternoon at The Pavilion.

“It starts with competing,” Baggett said. “I thought in the second half we could have competed a little better.”

Rider (5-5), which had a three-game winning streak snapped, went from down five with 4:41 left in the first half to down 21 just 2:25 into the second.

The Wildcats (11-0) led by as many as 27 in the second half.

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Friday, December 20, 2013

RIDER GAMEDAY: Broncs challenge No. 8 Villanova

Who: Rider (5-4) at No. 8 Villanova (10-0)

When: Saturday, 4 p.m., The Pavilion

TV: Fox Sports 1

Radio: 107.7 FM The Bronc

Last Time Out: Rider def., Wagner, 79-58; Villanova def., La Salle, 73-52

Series History: Villanova leads 21-2

Background: The Broncs’ best chance may be if the Wildcats get caught looking ahead to Syracuse in a weeks time.

Under the radar to start the season, Villanova has ascended into the top-10 with victories over Kansas and Iowa.

The Wildcats just swept through a string of Big 5 games — beating Penn, St. Joe’s and La Salle — winning by an average of 24.6 points.
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South Point Holiday Hoops Classic primer

Las Vegas, Nev. 

Dec. 20: Princeton Tigers (8-1) vs. Pacific Tigers (8-1), 7:30 p.m. PT (10:30 ET) Dec 21: Princeton Tigers vs. Portland Pilots (6-4), 8:00 p.m. (11:00 ET)

Coaches: Princeton – Mitch Henderson (third season, 45-24 overall). Pacific – Ron Verlin (first season, 8-1 overall). Portland – Eric Reveno (eighth season, 102-128 overall).

Probable Starters
Princeton: C Hans Brase (6-8, sophomore, 12.1 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 2.9 APG). F Will Barrett (6-10, senior, 11.1 PPG, 3.7 RPG). G Ben Hazel (6-5, junior, 10.8 PPG, 4.7 RPG). G Jimmy Sherburne (6-3, senior, 7.2 PPG, 2.3 RPG, 3 APG). G T.J. Bray (6-5, senior, 15 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 7.2 APG).

Pacific: F Khalil Kelley (6-8, senior, 8.8 PPG, 5.2 RPG). F Trevin Harris (6-5, senior, 5 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 2.3 APG). F Tony Gill (6-8, senior, 12.2 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 1 APG). G Andrew Bock (6-2, senior, 12.6 PPG, 2.1 RPF, 2.7 APG). G Sama Taku (6-2, senior, 12 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 2.4 APG). Key Reserves: G T.J. Wallace (6-2, freshman, 7.2 PPG, 1.4 RPG, 1.6 APG). C Tim Thomas (6-10, senior 4.1 PPG, 2.4 RPG). F Andrew Short (6-3, junior, 3.8 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 1 APG).

Portland: F Ryan Nicholas (6-7, senior, 13.2 PPG, 10.1 RPG, 1.2 APG). C Thomas van der Mars (6-11, junior, 12.8 PPG, 7.1 RPG, 1.2 APG). G Kevin Bailey (6-5, junior, 17.6 PPG, 3 RPG, 2.3 APG). G Bryce Pressley (6-4, sophomore, 6.3 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 3.7 APG). G Alec Wintering (5-11, freshman, 7.6 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 3.9 APG). Key Reserves: G Bobby Sharp (6-2, junior, 8 PPG, 1.6 RPG, 1 APG). C Riley Barker (6-10, junior, 2.7 PPG, 3.4 RPG). F-C Volodymyr Gerun (6-10, junior, 4.5 PPG, 3.2 RPG).

Sherburne Back: Friday’s game against Pacific should mark the return of fifth-year senior guard Jimmy Sherburne, who was suspended for the last three games for an unspecified violation of team rules. Though the Tigers didn’t miss much of a beat without Sherburne in the lineup — they beat FDU, Rutgers and Penn State in his absence — he has played well this season, and gives the Tigers another solid ball handler to help T.J. Bray in the backcourt.

Against Pacific: On paper at least, this looks like the more difficult of the two games for Princeton, as Pacific will be the fourth team in’s top-100 they’ve played this season. The west coast Tigers’ only loss of the season came to Oregon, while their most impressive win of the season came two weeks ago at Utah State. They are current projected to finish fourth in the WCC, behind Gonzaga, St. Mary’s and BYU.

Against Portland: Though the Pilots aren’t projected to finish near the top of the WCC, they do feature one of the toughest scorers in the conference in 6-foot-5 guard Kevin Bailey, who is tied for fifth in the league at 17.6 points per game.

Mitch Henderson on the Tigers defense:

I think we are a work in progress on both ends of the floor, but especially defensively. I would think every team in this tournament we are in right now and most every team across the country — if you look at the top 10 teams in the country, they happen to be the top defensive teams, most likely. Ohio State is third in the country and they are the best defensive team in the country. I think with the exception of Syracuse, all the top 10 teams in the country are great defensive teams. I’m fully aware, and so are our guys, that we really have to be a great defensive team. We’re capable, we just have to keep pounding away at it. It’s just the little things, competing on every possession. Having Jimmy and T.J, together really helps us with that.

On containing smaller guards:

I’ve seen everybody struggle against those players. I hope that rules continue to get called the way they do, because it’s a fastpaced game that rewards the offensive player, but we are going to have to continue to work on dribble penetration.

On Pacific:

Unfortunately, when you are studying teams, nobody on the east coast knows about this pacific team. We know that they are very good and have a lot of good pieces. They have two really good guards, and some post players that can score in lots of different ways. It’s going to be another really nice challenge for us. This group, we’ve done a really good job of trying to get better every game and not really thinking too much about what else is going on.

On Pacific/Portland: 

For me, I take a look at the rankings because it’s a helpful tool, but it really does not tell the whole picture. If you look at us and look at our numbers, it doesn’t tell you everything. You have to look at these teams, and they are two very good teams capable of beating just about anybody. Pacific has one loss at Oregon, and they were up 21-10 and kind of cruising in the first half. They went to Utah State and won. Portland has a couple nice wins, they beat a a pretty good Columbia team at their place. You look at the numbers, and there are players. Kevin Bailey is as talented a player as we’ve seen. We’ll have to put our bodies in front of him and work together to stop him.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

RIDER RUNBACK: Game 9 — Rider 79, Wagner 58

LAWRENCEVILLE — Three observations following Rider's 79-58 victory over Wagner Saturday afternoon at Alumni Gymnasium that ran the Broncs' winning streak to three.

1. Ready! Set! Go!: Life is so much easier when you get off to a good start. Rider can certainly attest to this after racing out to a 16-point lead over the Seahawks in the first six minutes. The Broncs (5-4) made seven of their first eight shots and their first four 3-pointers. Getting off to a quick start gives you margin for error later on. Even though Rider turned it over 26 times, because of the strong start Wagner (5-6) never got closer than nine in the second half.
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Saturday, December 14, 2013

PRINCETON POSTGAME: Tigers 81, Penn State 79 (OT)

Malachi Richardson picks Syracuse

Monday, December 9, 2013

RIDER RUNBACK: Game 8 - Rider 90, Quinnipiac 78

Danny Stewart puts up a shot against Quinnipiac. Photo/GREGG SLABODA

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Three thoughts from Rider's 90-78 victory over Quinnipiac Sunday afternoon that gave the Broncs a 2-0 start in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play.

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Sunday, December 8, 2013

RIDER GAMDEDAY: Broncs look for 2-0 MAAC start against Quinnipiac

Who: Quinnipiac (5-2, 1-0) at Rider (3-4, 0-1)

When: 2 p.m., Sunday, Alumni Gymnasium

TV: None

Radio: 107.7 FM The Bronc

Last Time Out: Rider def. Monmouth, 89-83; Quinnipiac def. Fairfield, 83-79

Background: The Broncs opened the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference season Thursday night with a win over Monmouth and now face the other league debutante.

The Bobcats are off to good start, winning five of their first seven, including their conference opener against Fairfield.
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Saturday, December 7, 2013


Who: Princeton Tigers (5-1, 0-0 Ivy) vs. Fairleigh Dickinson Knights (3-7, 0-0 NEC).
When/Where: 7 p.m. Saturday, Jadwin Gym.
Last game: Princeton beat Bucknell 66-53 on the road; Fairleigh Dickinson lost 77-62 at Stony Brook.
Coaches: Princeton – Mitch Henderson (third season, 42-24). FDU – Greg Herenda (first season, 3-7).
Probable starters: Princeton – C Hans Brase (6-8, sophomore,12.2 PPG, 7.2 RPG. 3.3 APG). F Will Barrett (6-10, senior, 9.8 PPG, 3.5 RPG). G Ben Hazel (6-5, junior, 10.2 PPG, 4.7 RPG). G Jimmy Sherburne (6-3, senior, 7.2 PPG, 2.3 RPG, 3 APG). G T.J. Bray (6-5, senior, 13.7 PPG, 5 RPG, 5 APG).
Fairleigh Dickinson: F Mathias Seilund (6-7, senior, 6.9 PPG, 3.8 RPG). F Scooter Gillette (6-9, senior, 6.7 PPG, 3.4 RPG). G Mustafaa Jones (6-3, junior, 11 PPG, 3 RPG). G Sydney Sanders Jr. (5-11, senior, 18.5 PPG, 4 RPG, 5.6 APG). G Matt McDonald (6-5, freshman, 8.5 PPG, 2.5 RPG).
Keys to the game
Stopping Sanders: If the mantra for this year’s Princeton team on offense has been balance — seven different players average seven or more points per game — Fairleigh Dickinson’s has been the opposite, with junior guard Sydney Sanders emerging as their key go-to guy.  While Sanders averages 18.5 points per game, that number actually doesn’t even tell the whole story. According to the excellent advanced statistics site, Sanders uses 34.4 percent of the Knights possessions (which means that 34.4 percent of FDU’s possessions either end with Sanders making a shot, missing a shot that isn’t rebounded by the offense, or committing a turnover). That’s the third-highest number in college basketball. Sanders also has shown an ability to rise to big occasions, with 22 points and 10 assists in the Knights win against Rutgers and 23 points and nine assists in their win over Seton Hall.
Backcourt stability: While Spencer Weisz proved his value in the starting lineup in T.J. Bray’s absence, the lineup coach Mitch Henderson sent out against Bucknell seems to make the most sense going forward, with Bray, Jimmy Sherburne and Ben Hazel all competent scorers and ball handlers. They will be tested against the Knights, however, both by trying to stop Sanders on the defensive end and navigating the numerous types of defensive pressure FDU likes to use to disrupt opposing offenses.

Friday, December 6, 2013

RIDER RUNBACK: Game 7 — Rider 89, Monmouth 83

Danny Stewart scored 21 points, including 11 of 12 from the line. Photo by JOHN BLAINE

WEST LONG BRANCH — Three thoughts after Rider won its Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference opener over Monmouth Thursday night.

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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

RIDER GAMEDAY: Broncs try to continue dominance over Monmouth in MAAC opener

Who: Rider (2-4) at Monmouth (3-4)

When: Thursday, 7 p.m., Multipurpose Activities Center


Radio: 107.7 FM The Bronc

Last Time Out: Rider lost to North Dakota State, 87-70; Monmouth def. North Carolina A&T, 76-61.

Background: The Broncs travel to West Long Branch Thursday night to welcome the Hawks to the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference.

Monmouth, under third-year coach King Rice, was picked to finish bottom of the league in preseason, but comes into the matchup on the back of two consecutive wins.
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