I should go to Alumni Gym more often. Rider University’s tiny arena (or gym) is located in Lawrenceville, NJ and though the 1,650-seat facility is not on The List, I have visited it twice now for a couple basketball games. The first time I made the hour and a half drive from my house was in 2009 to see a great MAAC battle between Rider and Siena (the “Onions, Double Order!” year the Saints beat Ohio State in the tourney). In that game, this happened:
Flash forward to last night, where the Iona Gaels (10-6, 5-1) played Rider (11-6, 4-1) in a big game at the top of the conference. It was another classic:
The Gaels went on to win a thriller, 100-96 in OT. Iona jumped out to a 30-13 as Rider was laughingly sloppy. Then a barrage of 3s brought them back in it and they even went up eight in the second half. From there, it was a see-saw affair that was exciting as these two teams love to push the pace as evidenced by the score. One guy who stuck out during the game was Mike Glover who was an absolute beast with 17 boards. The MAAC tourney this year in Bridgeport should be a fun affair.
Even though Alumni Gym is tiny (the 333rd largest out of 345 Division I teams), it’s cozy and fits the Lawrenceville, NJ campus nicely. In the main entrance is a nice Athletics Hall of Fame for all Rider’s best athletes. After navigating a couple of hallways you enter to the main foyer, where a couple double doors brings you to the gym. They pack it in most nights and the fans bring passion to the game. The only discernible feature to this gym is the mold on the slanted roof. Otherwise, it suits the need of the program and the Broncs have a good thing going with Alumni Gym. Plus, if they need a bigger facility, they can (and have) play at Sun National Bank Arena in Trenton, about 20 minutes away. There’s nothing like being inside a warm gym on a cold winter’s night. For a full review, head on over to Stadium Journey, where I will be doing a write-up on the arena.