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

Monday, March 16, 2015

Rider accepts CBI bid, will play Loyola Chicago

Rider accepted a bid to play in the CBI postseason tournament and will take on Loyola Chicago Tuesday night at Gentile Arena in Chicago. Tip Off is slated for 8 p.m.

The Broncs (21-11) have compiled 20 wins for the first time since the 2010-11 season and are making their second postseason appearance in the last three years.

The Ramblers (19-13) are in the postseason for the first time since 1985. They finished sixth in the Missouri Valley Conference, eventually losing to No. 11 Northern Iowa in the conference semifinals.
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Saturday, March 7, 2015

Iona holds off Siena in MAAC quarters

Albany, N.Y. >> Tim Cluess spent the week griping that his Iona team had to play a road game in the quarterfinals of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament.

Cluess wasn’t backing off that after the Gaels withstood a late charge by Siena and held on for a 74-71 victory Saturday afternoon at the Times Union Center.

The T-U Center as it’s known, of course, is Siena’s home court.

“I’m very proud of my team for winning its 12th road game of the year,” Cluess said. “When you win on the road, it’s a great thing.” 
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Rider's Kevin Baggett MAAC Coach of the Year

Kevin Baggett was named MAAC Coach of the Year. (John Blaine Photo)

Kevin Baggett picked up his first piece of hardware.

Rider’s third-year boss was named Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Coach of the Year Friday night at the league’s annual banquet.

The Broncs were tabbed seventh in the conference’s preseason poll, but Baggett guided them to 21 regular-season victories, which are two shy of matching the program’s high-water mark of 23. Rider’s 15 league wins were also the most since joining the MAAC in 1997.

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Thursday, March 5, 2015

3 questions for Rider ahead of MAAC Tournament

Rider head coach Kevin Baggett. (John Blaine Photo)

Three days in March.

Rider head coach Kevin Baggett understands that’s how it works in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference if the Broncs are going to claim the league’s automatic NCAA tournament berth for the first time.

They’ll have to win three games in three days.

“Our guys have the right mindset,” Baggett said. “They understand they’re playing for each other. They’re playing for the opportunity to try and get us back in the (NCAA) tournament.”

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Monday, March 2, 2015

Lopez First Team All-MAAC; Okereafor Second Team

Rider senior center Matt Lopez was named First Team All-MAAC on Monday by the league's coaches, while junior guard Teddy Okereafor earned Second Team.

Lopez, in his only year of eligibility, led the Broncs in points (12.3) and rebounding (7.7) before suffering a season-ending knee injury on Feb. 19 against Quinnipiac.

Other first team selections were: Iona's David Laury and A.J. English, Manhattan's Emmy Andujar, Monmouth's Justin Robinson and Quinnipiac's Zaid Hearst.

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Rider walk-on Emerson Bursis gets his moment to shine

Rider's Emerson Bursis scored his first basket of the season against Marist. (Gregg Slaboda Photo)

Lawrenceville >> On a frigid January night Emerson Bursis was sitting in the empty lobby of Rider University’s Alumni Gymnasium 90 minutes after the host Broncs just lost to Monmouth. The national championship football game was on in the background with the volume muted when someone walked by and asked, “What are you still doing here?”

Bursis was working on a business law elective course he took over the winter break so he can finish his master’s degree in business administration this year and begin law school.

Bursis is also a member of Rider’s basketball team, which just won its 21st game Sunday afternoon and heads to next weekend’s Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament as the No. 2 seed.

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