Senior forward Dennis Ross scored a season-high 22 points and led American University to its 10th consecutive victory, a 69-59 East Coast Conference triumph over Rider tonight.
American, playing its second game without leading scorer Boo Bowers (knee injury), is 10-2 and 4-0 in the ECC East while Rider is 4-7 and 1-3 in the ECC West.
After a 34-34 halftime tie, AU went ahead, 40-38, on a short bank shot by Ross with 15:30 to play. Rider then tied the game on a 15-foot jump shot by guard Fred Lee, but AU scored 13 of the next 19 points, mainly on the shooting of Ross and Ed Sloane, to take a 53-46 lead with 7:43 remaining.
The closest Rider came after that was 57-52 with four minutes to play but American clinched the game when Mark Nickens made a layup and was fouled with 3:29 remaining. Nickens missed his free throw attempt, but Ross tipped in the rebound to put the Eagles safely ahead, 61-52.
Sophomore guard Tom O'Hara led Rider with 14 points.
Sloane finished with 18 for American and Nickens had 10.