By: Phillip Lutz, Sports Editor
The UM-Dearborn men’s basketball team won two nail biting games this week.
The Wolverines welcomed the Rochester College Warriors on Wednesday to the UM-Dearborn Fieldhouse. The Wolverines played tough and came from behind to win 78-69.
The first half was dominated by the Warriors, and they went into halftime with the 41-33 lead. The Wolverines seemed more determined as they started the second half.
Senior Jason Penn found his groove and led the team with 13 points in the second half. Penn was ripping down rebounds on both ends of the court and made two key blocks to confuse and stop the advancing Warriors.
Junior Xavier Crofford and sophomore Cody Kegley each heated up from downtown, combining for four 3-pointers down the stretch. The Wolverines took their first lead of the game with 6:17 left in the game.
The Warriors would tie it up, but the Wolverines once again took the lead with five minutes to go. Senior Ashton Curd was seen excitedly and hooting and hollering for the Wolverines. Curd has been injured the past few weeks with an undisclosed injury.
The lead would change hands one more time at 4:46 to go. Penn would then go on to score five points. Senior Gage Throgmorton would hit a key bucket, giving the Wolverines a 76-69 lead with 49 seconds remaining. Junior Donovan Farrell would hit the final bucket sealing the deal for the Wolverine win.
Penn led the Wolverines in scoring 18 total points, including making 4 of 7 from the free throw line. He also had eight rebounds, three assists, two blocks, and a steal.
Crofford and Throgmorton each knocked in 14 points. Crofford led the team with six assists. Junior Mafiaion Joyner added 13 points including three from 3-point range and being perfect from the free throw line.
The Warriors were led by Andrew Kline with 18 points and Justin Nafso with 13 points.
The Wolverines played another game at the UM-Dearborn Fieldhouse on Saturday afternoon against the Siena Heights University Saints.
The Wolverines led the way most of the game until the final minutes when the Saints would take their first lead of the day. The Wolverines quickly recovered and retook the lead in a set of free throws by Kegley. Penn saved the ball from going out of bounds and Crofford found Throgmorton for the game winning bucket. The Wolverines won the game 63-60.
Jason Penn led the Wolverines with 15 points. Penn is just two points shy of hitting the 1,500 point mark for his UM-Dearborn career. He also had seven rebounds, three steals, a block, and an assist.
Cody Kegley added 14 points including making all four free throws and hitting two from downtown. He also had nine assists, four rebounds, and three steals.
Xavier Crofford scored 12 points. Crofford is 20 points away from hitting the 1,000 point mark for his UM-Dearborn career. He also added five rebounds, three assist, two steals, and made four of five from the free throw line.
The Wolverines now have a two game winning streak and a 14-10 overall record. They also have a half game lead over Madonna University for fourth in the WHAC (Wolverine Hoosier Athletic Conference) with a 9-5 record.
The Wolverines will travel on Wednesday to Southfield to take on the Lawrence Technological University Blue Devils at 8 p.m.