Women’s College Basketball: Rider University 48, Manhattan College 41

Rider University women’s basketball team defeated Manhattan College 48-41 in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference game on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 6.

RIVERDALE, N.Y. — Junior MyNeshia McKenzie (Springfield, Pa./Springfield (Delco)) had 18 points and senior Caitlin Bopp (Baltimore, Md./Inst. of Notre Dame) added 16 points and a career-high 18 rebounds as the Rider University women’s basketball team defeated Manhattan College 48-41 in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference game on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 6.

For Bopp, this was her 21st career ‘double-double’ and third of the season.

Leading 32-26, Rider (6-7, 1-1 MAAC) used a 7-0 run, with four different Bronc players scoring to open up a 39-26 lead with 8:55 left in the game.

Trailing 44-33, Manhattan closed to within six points on the strength of a 6-1 run with 22 seconds left but that was as close as the Jaspers would get as Rider made three of four free throws to clinch the victory.

Both teams struggled on offense early with Rider opening up an 11-4 lead with 8:59 left in the opening half with four points coming from McKenzie.

Manhattan tied the game at 13 with 4:52 left in the first period on the strength of a 9-2 run.

Leading 17-15, Rider closed the opening half on a 7-1 run, five points by McKenzie and the Broncs led 24-16 at the break.  Rider held Manhattan without a field goal for the final 3:52 of the first half and held the Jaspers to six field goals and 27 percent shooting in the opening 20 minutes.

Rider expanded its lead to 10 (28-18) with 18:01 left before the Jaspers closed to within six (32-26) with 12:17 left in the contest.

Also for Rider, freshman Mikal Johnson (Manassas, Va./Osbourn) had six points in 24 minutes off the bench with senior Sironda Chambers (Wilmington, Del.) adding five points, three rebounds and two steals in 24 minutes.

Manhattan was led by Shayna Ericksen who had 10 points and 10 rebounds.

The teams combined for 39 turnovers.

Rider had four blocks in the game, two each by Bopp and graduate student Carleigh Brown (Philadelphia, Pa./Nazareth Academy).  Brown added a point and three rebounds in 21 minutes off the bench.

Rider shot 33 percent (15-46) with Manhattan shooting 31 percent (15-48).

The difference in the game was at the free throw line with Rider making 17 of 23, compared to 9 of 15 for the Jaspers.

This is the 15th time under head coach Lynn Milligan that Rider has held a team below 50 points.  The Broncs last held a team to 41 points against Stony Brook, on Dec. 6, 2011 in a 53-41 win.

This was the 35th meeting all-time between Rider and Manhattan with the Broncs winning for the ninth time.  Manhattan had defeated Rider fourth straight times coming into the game.

The teams meet again in Lawrenceville on Jan. 31 at 7pm.

Rider hosts Canisius College at noon Thursday in a special Kid’s Day game in Alumni Gymnasium.

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