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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 9, 2016

Rider Gameday: at Fairfield

Who: Fairfield (7-7, 1-3) at Rider (4-11, 0-4)

When: Saturday, 7 p.m., Alumni Gymnasium

Radio: 107.7 FM The Bronc

Last Time Out: Rider lost to Iona, 67-58; Fairfield lost to Siena, 91-76

Series History: Fairfield leads, 31-27, snapping a four-game losing streak with a 74-70 victory in the first meeting this season between the schools.

Scouting Fairfield: The Stags have already matched their entire win total from last season with seven this year. Given Fairfield’s struggles, particularly on the offensive end, coach Sydney Johnson scraped everything he learned as a player and coach in the Princeton system and installed an up-temp offense, predicated on shooting 3-pointers. As a result, Fairfield has increased its points per game total from 59.5 to 80.1 (that’s +20.6 points per game). The Stags are averaging 61.6 shots per game (26.6 threes at a 36.7 percent connect rate), which is roughly nine more shots per contest than a year ago. Marcus Gilbert is the star player, averaging 19.9 points. Gilbert didn’t play in the first meeting against Rider.

Scouting Rider: The Broncs begin a three-game homestand in desperate need of a victory. They’re still searching for their first MAAC win after falling to Iona by nine on Thursday night. Rider has lost eight games by 10 points or less. “I have not lost confidence in this team,” head coach Kevin Baggett said. “We’re right there. We just got to clean a couple things up and get better, but I do think this team still has a chance to compete and find our way in this league.” After a string of five consecutive games in double figures, including a season-high 22 at Providence, Jimmie Taylor has slumped in the last four. The junior guard was held scoreless in a season-low 21 minutes against Iona. Taylor’s too good of a player not to contribute, so Rider has to get him going.


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