By JERAMY STOVER, Sports Editor
When the clock finally hit all zeroes, the players ran from the sideline to their players on the floor and celebrated in front of the scorers table. They knew something special had happened.
The University of Michigan-Dearborn men’s basketball team defeated third-ranked Davenport on Wednesday in one of the program’s greatest wins, and arguably one of the best victories in UM-Dearborn athletics history.
While the Wolverines show promise this season, they aren’t ranked and are most likely a couple more upsets away from being ranked. It wasn’t David vs Golliath or Team USA vs the Soviet Union in 1980 miracle on ice. But it was an enormous upset.
“It may be,” head coach Taylor Langley said about the win being the greatest in program history. “It’s funny you’re in that moment you don’t realize it. On my way home on my drive I’m thinking ‘wow that may have been the greatest win in UM-Dearborn history for men’s basketball’.”
“What a great moment for the school, what a great moment for our athletic department, what a great moment for our guys. I mean it was just very special to witness that and be part of that and know that everybody here from the people over at the administration building to our athletic directors to our coaches and our players, our student managers we all help make that happen, pretty special,” Langley said.
It was UM-Dearborn’s first win against Davenport since Feb. 2009, when the Wolverines defeated the Panthers in double overtime. Davenport is not only a powerhouse in the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference, but in the country as well, and has had their way with UM-Dearborn in recent history.
But not last game. It was the Wolverines who took control of the game and finished strong, despite the Panthers fierce comeback attempt.
“I thought for a good portion of the game we really played well, we were beating them soundly,” Langley said.
The Wolverines did handle the Panthers, as Langley put it, “soundly.” UM-Dearborn led for all but 1:25 of the game.
Sophomore guard Xavier Crofford said it was a huge moment for his teammates when they gathered and celebrated at the end of the game knowing they had done something not many people expected of them.
“It was a huge moment it was monumental just for so many reasons. Coach Langley came from (Davenport), so it’s always a big game for him when we play Davenport, us not beating them both of the times we played them last year, both of the times the years before that and it’s been a long time since a win like this happened, so it was a big moment,” Crofford said.
UM-Dearborn will look to get another monumental victory when they welcome the other conference powerhouse Cornerstone to the Fieldhouse on Jan. 4. The Golden Eagles have already defeated two top-five teams this season and are currently ranked eighth in the country.