Men’s Basketball ends season with playoff loss to Rochester

Junior Jason Gigliotti was named to the All-WHAC Second Team after a standout season. Photo//UM-Dearborn Athletics

The UM-Dearborn men’s basketball team took on the Rochester Warriors in the WHAC Postseason Tournament quarterfinals on February 26th at Garth Pleasant Arena in Rochester Hills, Michigan.

The Warriors jumped out to an early lead and were up by 10 in the first half. The Maize and Blue were unable to mount a comeback in the second half, falling 80-70. The Wolverines concluded their season at (17-14, WHAC 10-10). 

Receiving a WHAC All-Freshman Team award for his play this season, Damian Forrest led the Wolverines with 25 points on 12-17 from the field against the Warriors. Sophomore Elwood Tomlinson chipped in 12 points, but was unable to make a single three pointer in six attempts. Senior Cody Kegley also had 12 points in his final game as a Wolverine.

The Wolverines shot the ball well from the floor (51%), but only went 5 for 17 from three point land. They also struggled with turnovers with 16 compared to Rochester’s 9. The Wolverines’ season was filled with highs and lows, but there’s hope for improvement next season.

This year’s graduating class consists of some key players. The biggest loss is guard Cody Kegley. His 12.8 points per game were good enough for second on the team and he has been one of the team’s centerpieces for the past 4 years. He was also awarded a spot on the All-WHAC Second Team for his efforts this season. 

Donovan Farrell had a season ending injury after 13 games, but averaged 7.8 points and 4.5 boards per game. Jared Jackson did not play many minutes throughout the season, but provided leadership and high energy plays off the bench. The 2020-21 Wolverines will have to find a way to fill the voids left by these seniors.

Junior Jason Gigliotti finished with team leading averages of 13.8 points and 9.3 rebounds and made the All-WHAC Second Team. He will be a centerpiece for this team next year. 

Sophomore Elwood Tomlinson stepped into a starting role late in the season and did not disappoint. His 9.9 points per game was the third highest on the team, but even more promising is that he scored 10 or more points in nine of his last 11 games. He also knocked down 52 three pointers on the season and will bring a stable scoring punch to the backcourt. 

Sophomore Zach Lattimer offered shooting to the starting lineup before an injury shortened his season. He averaged 9.5 points per game and shot over 40% from three. 

Freshman Damian Forrest (8.3 points) and redshirt freshman Spencer Robinson (3.5 points) will compete for larger roles within the offense in 2020-21. Juniors Mathew Mignault and Jalen Paul along with sophomore Reid Sellers will likely round out next year’s rotation.

Next season’s team has the chance to improve from an inconsistent 2019-2020 season that had the Wolverines show flashes of brilliance. Losing Kegley will be tough, but the pieces are in place for the 2020-21 Wolverines to be a dominant force in the WHAC.