By JERAMY STOVER, Sports Editor
As the leaves begin to fall and the air becomes chill that indicates basketball season is upon us and last week the University of Michigan-Dearborn men’s basketball team kicked off their season with three straight road games.
On Oct. 25 the Wolverines traveled to Ohio to take on Wilberforce in a game where the Bulldogs looked to avenge a 73-62 loss they suffered to the Wolverines last season in Dearborn. Wilberforce did that and more by defeated the Wolverines 94-74 in the rematch at their place.
The Bulldogs got off to a strong start and took a 16-point lead into halftime. UM-Dearborn offered up better contest in the second half but couldn’t muster up a comeback.
Wilberforce had six players finish in double figures led by Demon Parker who had a game-high 19 points. The Wolverines were led by sophomore Xavier Crofford who finished the game with 17 points and six assists. Senior Marcus Williams finished the game with 14 points and six rebounds and freshman Cody Kegley added 13 points and a team-high two steals.
One of the biggest differences in team stats was turnovers. UM-Dearborn had 17 compared to the Bulldogs’ 10.
On Oct 28 the Wolverines traveled to Indiana for a pair of games with the first one against Purdue Northwest. UM-Dearborn would fall short losing to the Pride 82-67.
The Wolverines (1-2) gave the Pride a good fight in the first half trailing by just two after the first 20 minutes. But Purdue Northwest would outscore UM-Dearborn 41-28 in the second half to run away with the win.
Junior Jason Penn was a force in the paint for the Wolverines scoring a game-high 19 points going 8-for-12 from the field and hauling in 10 rebounds. Kegley had another strong game scoring 11 points and six rebounds. Kegley knocked down 50 percent of his shots from three point range.
The Wolverines as a team shot 30 percent from behind the arc and again were on the wrong side of the turnover battle committing 18 turnovers to the Pride’s 12.
The next day UM-Dearborn defeated Holy Cross 81-55 to wrap up their weekend in Indiana. The Wolverines dominated the first half going into the locker room with a 25 point lead.
Williams led all scorers with 19 points and added six rebounds. He shot 70 percent from the field with his three missed shots all coming from three point range where he went five-for-eight. Junior Ashton Curd contributed with 11 points.
Sophomore Alex Hagel saw a minutes increase after missing the first game due to a foot injury and playing just eight minutes in the second game. In his 19 minutes on the floor Hagel scored 11 points, 9 of which coming from behind the arc, and pulled down five rebounds.
UM-Dearborn were much better in the turnover department committing just 11 and forcing Holy Cross to commit 22.
The Wolverines play their first home game of the season on Thursday when they welcome Akron-Wayne to the Fieldhouse. Then on Saturday UM-Dearborn travels to Illinois to take on Roosevelt.