GAME NOTES: The Stony Brook Seawolves head to the Garden State for an early morning bout with the Rider Broncs at Alumni Gym.
Stony Brook enters with a 2-0 record after defeating Marist (60-57) on Friday and Mount Ida (93-57) on Sunday. The Seawolves have not been 2-0 since November 2009. Coach Steve Pikiell's squad shot only 35.7 percent from the field and 30 percent from beyond the arc in its season opener at Marist. It improved to 49.3 percent shooting from the floor versus Mount Ida. Stony Brook has outrebounded its opponents by an average of 13.0 boards per game through its first two games.
Kevin Baggett made his head coaching debut at Rider on Friday one to remember as his squad downed Robert Morris, 79-54, at home. The Broncs came out of the gates hot this season and made 50.9 percent of their field goal attempts and 8-of-17 from three-point range. Rider played well defensively also, limiting Robert Morris to 25.5 percent shooting and forcing it into 17 turnovers. Baggett was promoted from within the program to take over a team that returned all five starters from a year ago.
This will be just the fourth meeting between these programs at the hardwood. Rider holds a 3-0 advantage in the series that has been idle for a decade.
The graduation of Bryan Dougher's 13.2 ppg left a huge void to be filled for Stony Brook. The trio of Dave Coley, Anthony Jackson, and Tommy Brenton led the way in the season opener. Coley and Jackson each produced 13 points, while Brenton registered a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds with five assists. Coley is the team's leading scorer among returners as he averaged 10 ppg last season as a sophomore.
Not only did Rider bring back a lot of its talent from last season, it also added a big-time player in Nurideen Lindsey. The St. John's transfer poured in 26 points and dished out five assists in his first appearance in a Broncs' uniform. Anthony Myles, Daniel Stewart, and Jonathon Thompson all scored in double figures as well. Junior Fortunat is not a big time scoring threat, but his rebounding ability plays a vital role for Rider.
The Broncs are going to be a very difficult team to defeat at home with Lindsey running the show. The unusually early morning tip-off may be difficult to adjust to for both sides.