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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

Saturday, January 25, 2014

RIDER GAMEDAY: Broncs look for season sweep of Monmouth

Who: Monmouth (10-10, 4-5) at Rider (9-9, 5-4)

When: Sunday, 4 p.m., Alumni Gymnasium

TV: None

Radio: 107.7 FM The Bronc

Last Time Out: Rider lost to Manhattan, 67-51; Monmouth def. Faifield, 63-60

Previous Meeting: Rider won, 89-83, on Dec. 5

Background: With a victory Sunday afternoon, the Broncs can sweep the season series and make it eight straight victories over their in-state rival.

The Hawks have been playing well lately under third-year coach King Rice. They have won two straight and are one game behind Rider for that all important fifth position in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (by finishing in a top-5 spot you don't have to play on the opening night of the conference tourney).

Rider is coming off a loss to Manhattan in which it struggled offensively, shooting 27.1 percent and committing 17 turnovers. The Broncs have 41 turnovers in their last two games.

Coach Kevin Baggett has to figure out how to reignite freshman Jimmie Taylor. At one time, Taylor looked like the frontrunner for MAAC Rookie of the Year, but he's struggled mightily of late.

He's only reached double figures in two of the last five games — Rider is 2-3 in those five — and has turned it over four times in each of the last three.

Against Manhattan, Baggett thought Taylor looked like a "deer in the headlights" when the Jaspers brought pressure.

"We just got to keep coaching him, keep watching film with him and staying positive," Baggett said. "He's talented, but we're in league play now and guys are starting to figure him out. He's got to make the adjustment and we have to help him make the adjustment."

In the first meeting with Monmouth, seniors Danny Stewart and Anthony Myles combined for 25 of the Broncs' final 28 points in a road victory.

The Hawks have made some changes since then, notably inserting twin towers — 6-foot-10 freshmen Zac Tillman and Chris Brady — into the starting lineup.

Also, keep an eye on junior guard Andrew Nicholas, who has struggled to get his offense going against Rider. He had 13 points but on 5 of 16 shooting in the first meeting. When the two met the previous year (before they became conference rivals) he had eight on 3 for 17 from the field.

Projected Starting Lineups: Rider: G-Jimmie Taylor (Fr., 11.1 ppg), G-Zedric Sadler (So., 10.6 ppg), G-Anthony Myles (Sr., 18.2 ppg), F-Danny Stewart (Sr., 15.5 ppg), F-Kahlil Thomas (Fr., 5.8 ppg).
Monmouth: G-Deon Jones (Jr., 15.5 ppg), G-Justin Robinson (Fr., 8.7 ppg), G-Andrew Nicholas (Jr., 14.5 ppg), F-Zac Tillman (Fr., 3.6 ppg), F-Chris Brady (Fr., 2.6 ppg).


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