LAWRENCEVILLE – As long as they continue to perceive everything their coaches teach them and fight in games, the Rider men’s basketball team believes it is more than capable of winning the big games, as it was Saturday’s regular season final against domestic rival Monmouth in high school graduates.

“We are sponges as well as gladiators,” said Dimensio Vaughn, a 6-foot-and-five graduate student who was one of four players awarded at the Seniors’ Day before the Bronx defeated the Hawks 74-65. .

“I wanted that for the team,” Vaughn said. “We believe in each other and fight together for victory.”

It was an impressive battle that sent head coach Kevin Beguet, who has a total of 12-18 and 8-12 in the league, to the Metro Atlantic Athletics Conference tournament on Tuesday at Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City as the ninth seed , where it is expected to meet Manhattan with the eighth sowing at 5 p.m.

“It gives us a little boost on the way to the MAAC tournament,” Baguette said. “We beat Siena, St. Peter, Monmouth and Niagara and also had a chance to win against Jonah. So it helps us know that we can play with anyone. “

Ryder followed junior forward 6 feet 7 Marvin James, who scored 13 points in his game – 23 points in the first half, and six-foot senior guard Dwight Murray Jr., who scored 12 of 16 points during the same time period. The Broncs jumped to a 43-30 lead in the first half.

“They played better than us in the first half. We played better in the second half, but their first half was better, ”said Manmouth head coach King Rice. “Of course, I was expecting such a game. All teams in the league are the same. Jonah is a little apart, but for the most part we are all the same. Also, it was Ryder-Monmouth. We recruited many of the same children. Kevin and I are friends. I knew they were badly defeated last night, so today he really prepared them. “

As impressive as Ryder played in the first 20 minutes, the most impressive part of it came in the last seven minutes after Samuel Chaput of the Hawks scored a 3-point goal from the field, reducing the home side’s lead to 54-53.

The Bronx didn’t flinch when James struck a 16-foot kick in the jump to increase the lead before senior 6-8 forward Adjira Ogemuna-Johnson made two fouls a minute later to increase the lead to 58-53.

Manmouth came close to three points (58-55) by the end of the way when Walker Miller (11 points) made a left-handed corner kick with a 5:19 hook.

“Mervyn played well. He had a very good game today, – said Baguette. “We need each of these items.”

“I was more focused today,” said James, who has scored eight points in the last seven minutes. “When they returned, it was about translating the spirit. We just had to comply. In addition, during the whole period, everyone inflicted their own fouls. “

In the 5:43 final, when the Hawks exceeded the limit, Ryder joined in a free throw 12 of 15, scoring 10 of 12 in the 2:34 final to keep Manmouth in fear.

However, it was the next power slam from Adjira Ogemun-Johnson (12 points) that brought down the crowd and increased the lead to 67-57 with a score of 1:01.

Rice’s Hawks (19-12, 11-9), playing last season in the MAAC before moving to the Colonial Athletic Association, received 15 points from the transfer of Seton Hall to Shawar Reynolds Jr., while George Papas played with Miller with 11 points, and Marcus McClary added 10.

Manmouth, fourth in the conference, must wait until Thursday to start their last MAAC tournament.

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