Jaspers Hit the Road Again, Visit Rider On Thursday
Game 20: Manhattan Jaspers (5-14, 2-6 MAAC) at Rider Broncs (9-10, 4-4 MAAC)
Thursday, January 31, 2013-7 p.m.
Lawrenceville, N.J.-Alumni Gymnasium (1,650)
Live Video: JasperVision, MAAC.tv
Live Audio: www.gobroncs.com
ABOUT THE GAME
Manhattan (5-14, 2-6 MAAC) reaches the midway point of its Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) schedule with tonight's matchup against Rider (9-10, 4-4 MAAC) at Alumni Gymnasium. The Jaspers, who are looking to snap a three-game losing streak, dropped a 60-49 decision to Saint Peter's on Sunday afternoon. The Broncs, meanwhile, have won two straight, including a 69-57 triumph at Fairfield on Sunday. This is Manhattan's only road contest in a six-game stretch.
ABOUT THE JASPERS
The Jaspers (5-14, 2-6 MAAC) suffered their third straight defeat on Sunday afternoon, a 60-49 loss to Saint Peter's. Junior guard Monica Roeder tallies a team-leading 11.1 points per game and ranks fourth in the MAAC with 1.4 three-pointers per contest. Senior forward Toni-Ann Lawrence is currently second on the squad in both scoring and rebounding, averaging 8.8 points and 6.0 boards per outing. Freshman forward Shayna Ericksen contributes 8.5 points a night to go along with her team-leading totals in rebouding (7.3 rpg), steals (1.9 spg) and blocks (1.0 bpg). Senior guard Allison Skrec matched a career-high with 15 points against Saint Peter's. She averages 7.6 points per game and hands out a team-best 4.4 assists a night. This is the only road road contest in a six-game span for the Jaspers, who return to Draddy Gymnasium for a 12 p.m. matchup with Canisius on Sunday that's the first part of a Manhattan basketball doubleheader.
ABOUT THE BRONCS
Rider (9-10, 4-4 MAAC) has won two straight, including a 69-57 victory at Fairfield on Sunday, and enters tonight's game tied for fifth place in the MAAC. The Broncs are led by junior guard/forward MyNeshia McKenzie, the reigning MAAC Co-Player of the Week. McKenzie ranks fourth in the league in scoring (15.3 ppg), and her 9.5 rebounds per outing are the second-most in the conference. She also tallies a team-best 1.7 steals per game and is tied for the team lead in assists (1.5 apg). Senior guard Sironda Chambers contributes 13.4 points and 1.5 assists per game, while also shooting .857 from the free throw line. Senior forward/center Caitlin Bopp pulls down 8.8 rebounds per outing to go along with 9.4 points per contest. In addition, Bopp ranks second in the MAAC in blocked shots (1.9 bpg). This is the beginning of a three-game homestand for the Broncs, who host Niagara before taking on Fairfield next Thursday.
Rider snapped a four-game losing streak against Manhattan with a 48-41 victory at Draddy Gymnasium on Jan. 6. The Jaspers, however, have won 13 of the last 16 meetings between the two and boast a 27-9 edge in the all-time series. In last season's matchup at Alumni Gymnasium, Manhattan posted a 57-36 triumph on Feb. 12, 2012. The Jaspers have won their last two games at Alumni Gymnasium and boast an 11-4 record at Rider since the Broncs joined the MAAC in 1997-98.
LAST GAME--Saint Peter's 60, Manhattan 49
The Jaspers rallied from 13 points down in the second half to within two late before ultimately seeing their comeback effort come up short in a 60-49 loss to Saint Peter's at Draddy Gymnasium on Sunday afternoon. Manhattan made six of its first seven shots to take an early 14-5 lead, but Saint Peter's responded with an 8-0 rally to pull within one, 14-13. With the score knotted at 22-22, the Peacocks went on a 10-2 run to close the first half and take a 32-24 advantage into the locker room. Saint Peter's extended its lead to 13 points at 38-25 early in the second half, but Manhattan gradually chipped away, eventually getting within one at 46-45. However, a Saint Peter's three-pointer wtih 4:08 remaining proved to be the knockout punch, as the Peacocks outscored the Jaspers 14-4 the rest of the way to secure a 60-49 triumph. Allison Skrec matched a career-high with 15 points to lead Manhattan.
Manhattan assistant coach Christine Sikiric is a 2005 Rider graduate, and she started 56 of 57 career appearances for the Broncs after transferring from UMBC. Sikiric, then known by her maiden name Catalanotto, averaged 6.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, and a team-high 3.3 assists per game during her two seasons at Rider.