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Men's Basketball Holds Off Marist, 60-57

 

(Jordan, Rider)

LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ – Redshirt junior guard Anthony Durham (Philadelphia, PA/Abington/Putnam Science) posted his first-career double-double with 10 points, a career-high 11 rebounds and blocked Marist's attempt at a game-tying three at the buzzer in the Rider University men's basketball team's 60-57 victory Saturday night in Alumni Gymnasium. With the win, the Broncs improve to 13-7 (6-2 MAAC), while the Red Foxes slip to 4-15 (2-5 MAAC).

A 13-0 Rider run capped by Devine Eke's (Plainfield, NJ/Union Catholic [Maine]) putback slam at the 9:29 mark gave the Broncs a 23-7 lead. But with Stevie Jordan (Bensalem, PA/Conwell-Egan/API) and Durham on the bench with two fouls apiece and Dimencio Vaughn (New York, NY/Calloway) following them to the bench later in the half with his second personal, Marist whittled away at the Rider advantage. Marist outscored the Broncs, 16-6, in the final nine-plus minutes of the half to cut Rider's lead to 29-23 at the break.

The Red Foxes scored seven of the first eight points in the second half to tie the game, and following a Vaughn fast-break lay-up, scored the next six points to take its first lead since the 16:35 mark of the first half. But the Broncs utilized a full-court press to speed up the Red Foxes and scored 11 of the next 13 points to reestablish a seven-point cushion. Jordan Allen (Dover, DE/Dover) scored five points in the span, while Jordan added four.

Rider continued to lead by six with less than two minutes left, but Marist wouldn't go away. Three-pointers from Ryan Funk and David Knudsen made it a one-point game with 12 seconds remaining. Durham was fouled on the inbounds and knocked down both free throws to make it 60-57 with 9.7 seconds left. On the other end, Durham rejected Knudsen's look at the three at the buzzer to secure the victory.  
 
Quotes & Notes
"We're just fortunate to find a way to win tonight. I thought we struggled. But again, we were good enough to be able to come away with the win."

"We have to be more patient and take care of the ball. They rushed us into some things that we didn't need to be rushed into. Fortunately, we got the win. We've got to learn from it. But we can't play like this and hope to win more often than not because it's going to burn us."

"I thought our guys did a really good job in the press. We got energy from it. We were able to score some easy baskets and get after them and force them to have to play a lot faster than they wanted to play and took them out of their rhythm a little bit."
 
"I thought (Durham) did a great job. He understands what we're trying to get done. He's been in the program. He does a good job talking to the other guys, making sure they understand what's going on out there, especially in that time and situation. He's grown up. He's done an unbelievable job for us and I'm proud of him."

"I thought Devine did a really good job bringing the energy. Some putback dunks. He's coming along now. He had to find his way a little bit. He needed to get better and understand his role. Not that he didn't want to accept his role. He just needed to understand exactly what we needed him to do and I think he's really starting to come on now."  – Rider Head Coach Kevin Baggett

"Marist did a good job of slowing us down in the half court, so we decided to go to the press and speed them up a little bit."

"I embrace (my leadership role). I like leading these guys day in and day out. Coach gives me a big responsibility to talk to these guys. We'll go into the huddle and I'll be the only one talking. I tell Coach that he doesn't even have to say anything. I'll tell these guys what to do and I'll just lead them." – Rider redshirt junior guard Anthony Durham
 
- Rider now leads the all-time series with Marist, 33-24, including wins in each of the last three.
- The double-double was the first of Durham's career, while Allen and Frederick Scott (Munster, IN/Simeon [DePaul]) each came a rebound away from a double-double.
- Rider returns to action Tuesday, when it travels to Fairfield at 7 p.m.
- Six of Marist's seven MAAC contests have now been decided by six points or less.
 
Broncs by the Numbers
- A game after shooting a season-high 54.5 percent (30-55) from the floor against Saint Peter's, the Broncs had their second-poorest shooting performance of the year at 36.2 percent (21-58). Rider's season-low came at Xavier (33.3 percent, 24-72).
- Scott led the Broncs with 14 points, while also grabbing nine rebounds.
- Allen added 13 points, including 6-of-7 from the free-throw line.
- Durham made 5-of-6 free throw attempts, while Rider shot 70.0 percent (14-20) as a team.
- Durham dished out a team-high five assists, while Jordan added four assists without committing a turnover.
- Eke had four points, six rebounds and a career-high-tying four blocked shots in 18 minutes off the bench.
- Tyrei Randall (Aurora, CO/St. Thomas More) chipped in with three steals, all in the first half.


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