PISCATAWAY, N.J. Senior wing Dane Miller (6'6''-G/F-90) (Rochester, N.Y.) shot 5-of-9 and 8-of-9 from the free throw line to score 18 points with five assists in helping Rutgers (9-2) to a 68-56 win over Rider Friday afternoon at the RAC. It marked the fifth straight victory for the Scarlet Knights, who enter BIG EAST play having won nine of their past 10 contests.
Sophomore guard Eli Carter (6'2''-G-91) (Paterson, N.J.), sophomore forward Kadeem Jack (6'9''-F-92) (Queens, N.Y.) and junior power forward Wally Judge (Washington, D.C.) joined Miller in double figures. Carter was a perfect 6-of-6 from the free throw line to post 15 points, all of which were scored in the second half. Jack tied his career best with 12 points on 6-of-7 shooting. Judge had 10 points with eight rebounds.
The Scarlet Knights, who committed just eight turnovers, limited the Broncs to 30.4 percent (14-46) shooting.
Neither team could find its rhythm in the opening half. With 10 minutes to play before the break, the score was knotted at just 6-6. Five lead changes and two ties occurred in the opening 20 minutes. The Scarlet Knights closed the half with a 5-0 run to take a 24-21 advantage into the locker room at intermission.
RU increased its advantage to seven points (32-25) early in the second half, before Rider stormed back to cut the deficit to a single point on two occasions. Rutgers re-gained control, running its lead to 46-37, but a pesky Broncs squad remained within striking distance.
Holding a slim 52-49 edge with five minutes to play, the Scarlet Knights scored eight consecutive points and never looked back. RU was a perfect 6-of-6 from the charity stripe in the final minute to build a pair of 14 point advantages en route to the victory.
Rider (6-7) forward Daniel Stewart, who was a perfect 14-of-14 from the free throw line, led all scorers with 20 points.
Rutgers returns to the hardwood at No. 7 Syracuse in a 7 p.m. tip-off inside the Carrier Dome on Wednesday (Jan. 2). The game will be televised live in the New York Metropolitan market on MSG.
POSTGAME NOTES The 9-2 start marks the best through 11 games since 2010-11 and the third time in four years that RU has started the season 9-2. Rutgers held Rider to .304 shooting from the floor, the lowest mark for an opponent this season and the lowest since Pitt on Jan. 11, 2012. The Scarlet Knights turned the ball over just eight times, the third time this season (Sacred Heart, Howard) and second-straight game that RU has posted less than 10 miscues. The Scarlet Knights move to 15-1 all-time against Rider, including 13-1 at home. Dane Miller scored double-digits for the sixth time this season and 51st of his career with 18 points. Miller bested his career high for free throws made and attempted, going 8-for-9 from the line. Wally Judge posted double-digits in the first half for the first time in a Scarlet Knights uniform with 10 points. It marked the fifth game this season that Judge has scored 10-plus points. Judge paced RU in rebounding for the sixth time this season with eight boards. Kadeem Jack posted double-figures for the second time in four games with 12 points. Eli Carter (15) has recorded double-figures in each of the last 10 contests. Miller has dished out five-plus assists 11 times over his career (five). It marked the first time Miller has posted five-plus assists since Syracuse on Feb. 19, 2012. The Scarlet Knights move to 7-1 when three or more players score 10-plus points. When four or more players notch 10-plus, RU rises to 4-0. The 24 points scored by RU in the first half marked the lowest scoring output over the first 20 minutes since Nov. 9, 2012 vs. Saint Peters (22). It was also the lowest combined scoring effort since the first game of the season. Of the 11 players that saw action, eight scored and five posted at least eight points. RU rises to 3-1 when holding its opponent to less than 60 points. The RU front court combined for 50 points.
RUTGERS INTERIM HEAD COACH DAVID COX POST-GAME QUOTES
Opening Statement: The first thing that I want to say is that Im very thankful to have had this opportunity to coach this group of young men. I told them prior to the game, that the greatest gift an adult coaching can receive is the trust of his pupils, of his students, of his players. They have, for whatever reason, given me their trust for the past two weeks. That allowed me to be comfortable and grow into the position as a coach and for them to continue to grow. Im thankful for the opportunity. With that being said, Im looking forward to the big guy (Mike Rice) coming back tomorrow so we can continue about this climb that we are trying to make. As we enter BIG EAST play, I feel good that we are 9-2 and were ready to go. I think we are ready to compete. In regards to the game today, we didnt shoot the ball nearly as well as we have the past couple of games. I think that was to be expected. We were shooting it at a very high clip. A couple of things that we focused on going into this game, thinking that there might be a letdown as far as our offense goes, were defending the basketball. We got back to defending all the basics, closing out, communicating, talking, being in gaps because this is a team that can make you look really bad with those three guards getting to the basket off the dribble. The second thing was turnovers. We did a good job in both of those areas today. With the letdown offensively, I think we stepped up in those two areas and we were able to come out with a solid victory. There are some things to look back on and improve upon, but there are also some things that bode well for this team, particularly us coming together as a group during this adverse situation.
On holding the fort during Mike Rices absence: Absolutely, (theres a sense of holding the fort down). This was a stop gap. We had three games during that period where we had to hold the fort, or hold the rope, which is what I think we did a great job of. Again, I have to give a lot of credit to the rest of the staff managers included who stepped up and provided me with a tremendous amount of support and to the players who came together and played for one another. I think they made Rutgers proud with the way that theyve handled this.
On players: I think (the players are looking forward to getting back to normal). Theyre excited about BIG EAST play. I think theyre excited for Coach Rice to come back....I think theyre looking forward to it, absolutely. Dont take anything away from these last two weeks in regards to them and the growth that theyve made as a team. Im not talking about the coaches at all. As a group, this team came together.
RIDER HEAD COACH KEVIN BAGGETT POST-GAME QUOTES
Game thoughts: Good job by Rutgers, they did a good job against us in the post. I thought that we had the opportunity to win the game, (but we committed) bad turnovers at the wrong time. I thought our guys played well and battled. We had chances and we just have to go back and clean some things up.
We have to give ourselves a chance when were making those turnovers; we have to get good shots. There were things that we just have to build on and learn from. I thought that the effort was there and our guys played well. We just have to make some shots. Our guys are going to work on that and they understand that and we will be fine.
On the technical foul: I just thought that I saw something that the ref didnt see and he called the technical on me. Courtesy of: http://www.scarletknights.com
Adriatic League: Buducnost escape with narrow win over Igokea - 4 days ago
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Igokea - Buducnost 92:93 Buducnost recorded the fifth straight win in the Adriatic League season. They nipped Igokea in Laktasi on Saturday. Five players scored in double digits for the Montenegrin side. Buducnost claimed a 24:21 lead after the opening frame. The Montenegrin side boosted the margin in the second stanza. Buducnost recorded a 49:42 halftime lead. The visitors maintained the lead throughout the third quarter. Buducnost arrived at the final intermission up by 8 points. Igok... [read more]
Igokea - Buducnost 92:93
Buducnost recorded the fifth straight win in the Adriatic League season. They nipped Igokea in Laktasi on Saturday. Five players scored in double digits for the Montenegrin side. Buducnost claimed a 24:21 lead after the opening frame. The Montenegrin side boosted the margin in the second stanza. Buducnost recorded a 49:42 halftime lead. The visitors maintained the lead throughout the third quarter. Buducnost arrived at the final intermission up by 8 points. Igokea denied the deficit in the fourth quarter. James Robinson (190-PG-94, college: Pittsburgh) put the hosts in front 92:91 late in regulation. But Suad Sehovic (197-G/F-87) responded with a jumper and sealed the win for Buducnost. Suad Sehovic posted 18 points to lead the effort. Petar Popovic (194-PG-96, agency: BeoBasket) and Marcus Williams (191-G-85, college: Connecticut) netted 13 points each for the winners. James Anderson responded with 26 points for Igokea. Robert Rikic (219-C-90) had 14 points in the loss.
The new season in Montenegrin basketball league started yesterday and all 4 games were played. The curiosity is that 3 out of 4 guests won and it gives the special taste to the first round. The only team that was able to open the season with a home win is Sutjeska. They won 94-77 against the newcomer from Herceg Novi in a game that was closer than the final score says. However, in the last quarter more experienced team from Niksic played better and secured a win. Marko Perovic (203-C-92)... [read more]
The new season in Montenegrin basketball league started yesterday and all 4 games were played. The curiosity is that 3 out of 4 guests won and it gives the special taste to the first round. The only team that was able to open the season with a home win is Sutjeska. They won 94-77 against the newcomer from Herceg Novi in a game that was closer than the final score says. However, in the last quarter more experienced team from Niksic played better and secured a win. Marko Perovic (203-C-92) led the home team with 18 points while Nikola Lalic (187-PG-89) continued where he stopped last season- he had 16 points, 5 steals and 4 assists. The guests were led by Jovan Bacovic (197-F-86) who scored 26 points.
Jedinstvo and Ibar played a very tied game that was decided in the last seconds and brought joy to the away team (75-77). Former Jedinstvo player Marko Ljujic (207-C-90) had 20 points and 8 rebounds for the guests while Arso Lekovic (200-SF-90) led the home team with 22 points.
Another close game was played in Podgorica against Studentski centar and Danilovgrad. Studentski had a small lead during most part of the game but Danilovgrad did not let them get big lead and in the second half stopped their offense which led to an upset in Podgorica (71-78). Former Studentski player Milorad Sutulovic (196-G-90) had a great game against his former teammates and scored 29 points. On the other side Elvis Cekic (F-97) scored great around the rim and had 22 points but it was not enough for the win.
Teodo had no trouble against Ulcinj (73-58). Teodo's players just proved to have more players in rotation and it led them to the first win of the season. Petar Kusovac (195-F-93, college: S.Centar, agency: AproK Sports Group) led Teodo against his former team with 20 points. Ulcinj was led by Mihailo Radunovic (203-F-96) and Filip Patkovic (200-PF-90) who both scored 13 points.
KK Jedinstvo Bijelo Polje (Erste Liga) tabbed 31-year old Montenegrin center Danilo Draskovic (207-85, agency: BeoExcell). It is actually his comeback to Bijelo Polje as he has played here before. Draskovic played most recently at Lucon Basket Club in French NM2 league. The previous (14-15) season he played at CEP Lorient (also in NM2). Draskovic's team made it to the Radivoj Korac (Serbian Cup) Semifinals in 2011. He is a very experienced player. Draskovic has played also professionally... [read more]
KK Jedinstvo Bijelo Polje (Erste Liga) tabbed 31-year old Montenegrin center Danilo Draskovic (207-85, agency: BeoExcell). It is actually his comeback to Bijelo Polje as he has played here before. Draskovic played most recently at Lucon Basket Club in French NM2 league. The previous (14-15) season he played at CEP Lorient (also in NM2). Draskovic's team made it to the Radivoj Korac (Serbian Cup) Semifinals in 2011. He is a very experienced player. Draskovic has played also professionally in Cyprus (Etha), Greece (Xanthis), Serbia (Metalac, Atlas, Radnicki KG 06 and Radnicki 1950 Kragujevac) and Montenegro (Primorka).
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