Game Preview: Siena Hosts Rider Looking For Fourth Straight Home Win


The Saints return to the Times Union Center on Saturday night to face Rider in the first of three straight MAAC home games. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. It is the 40th meeting between the two teams with Siena leading the series 25-14. Rider has won the last three matchups however, including a sweep last season and a 72-53 win most recently in Lawrenceville.

Siena (5-9, 1-2) will be looking to rebound from their 63-59 loss at Monmouth on Thursday. Junior Rob Poole led the way with 21 points and 9 rebounds. The Saints struggled taking care of the basketball committing 23 turnovers, the most by a Siena team since November, 2010 against Minnesota (24).

Poole continues to lead the way for the Saints averaging 15.8 points (10th in MAAC) and 6.2 rebounds (tied 12th in MAAC). He averaged 24.5 points and 7.5 rebounds in Siena’s two games this week against Hofstra and Monmouth. He has scored 20 or more points in 3 of the last 5 games after doing that just 4 times in the previous 68 games of his career. His 118 3’s rank him 17th all-time at Siena.

Siena has won 3 straight home games, the longest home streak since a 5-game streak in January of 2012. A focus on being more selective in 3-point attempts seems to be paying off. Over their first 7 games the Saints have averaged 15.7 three point attempts, converting 27%. In the last 7 games they have averaged over 5 fewer attempts (10.5) but have made an improved 39%.

Freshman point guard Marquis Wright continues to lead the MAAC in assists (5.6) and steals (2.0). He is averaging 9 assists per game in MAAC play.

Reserve guard Evan Hymes is second in scoring with 10.1 points per game. With his 2-4 made three-pointers on Thursday, he is now tied for 12th (134 in 74 games) all-time at Siena with Marcus Faison (134 in 119 games). He is 4 behind Tom Huerter in 11th place with 138 made over 114 games.

Freshman Lavon Long continues to be a consistent force for the Saints averaging 9.6 points and 5.0 rebounds per game. He has scored in double figures 8 times this season. His value on the court is a key for the Saints who will need to adjust defensively after being foul plagued so far this season. As a team, Siena ranks 337 of 351 division I teams in fouls per game (24). Long has fouled out of 7 games and is leading the nation in fouls per game with 4.23.

Rider (7-5, 3-0) comes to Albany looking to begin MAAC play 4-0 for the first time in nine years. They are coming off a narrow 85-83 win over Niagara on Thursday.

The Broncs are led by a pair of seniors, 6-5 guard Anthony Myles averaging 18.1 points along with 4.6 rebounds per game and 6-7 forward Daniel Stewart with 15.8 points and 6.6 rebounds. 6-3 rookie point guard Jimmie Taylor III has been solid with 13.0 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists. Zedric Sadler, a 6-2 sophomore guard is also in double figures at 10.7 points per game.

Rider entered the 2014 calendar year with the best three-point field goal percentage in the nation at 44.2 percent and is still first in Division I at 43.5. Over the last two games Rider’s bench has out-scored the opponent’s bench 83 to 39.

Rider 2013-2014 Results:


Tue. 12 at Lehigh L 78-92

Sun. 17 at Purdue  L 77-81

Sat. 23 at Central CT State W 89-73

Tue. 26 ALBANY L 59-70

Fri. 29 Rice at Santa Clara W 97-93 ot

Sat. 30 N. Dakota State L 70-87


Thur. 5 *at Monmouth  W 89-83

Sun. 8 *QUINNIPIAC W 90-78

Sat. 14 WAGNER W 79-58

Sat. 21 at Villanova  L 67-88

Sun. 29 PENNSYLVANIA  W 89-88


Thur. 2 *NIAGARA W 85-83

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