DEARBORN, Mich. – The game seemed to be in hand for the University of Michigan-Dearborn men's basketball team with 7:19 to play, but Siena Heights University made it interesting late in a Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference contest Saturday at the UM-Dearborn Fieldhouse.
The Wolverines (RV) led 54-41 after back-to-back dunks from senior Jason Penn (SR/Detroit, MI) and junior Xavier Crofford (JR/Detroit, MI), but the Saints scored the next 12 and eventually took a one-point lead with 1:22 left after a layup from Tony Jackson II.
Sophomore Cody Kegley (SO/Yale, MI) made a big play on the next possession, driving to the basket and getting fouled. He hit a pair of free throws to put the Wolverines back on top 59-58.
Penn came away with a big steal with under 30 seconds left and drove the ball down the court. Penn would nearly lose the possession out of bounds but saved the ball to Crofford, who found senior Gage Throgmorton (SR/White Lake, MI) under the hoop. Throgmorton powered through a pair of Saint defenders for a layup and earned a trip to the line for an old-fashioned 3-point play to secure the 63-60 win for UM-Dearborn.
The win pushes the Wolverines to 14-10 overall and 9-5 in the WHAC. UM-Dearborn sits in fourth place in the league standings after Madonna University (RV) lost at home to Aquinas College on Saturday. Madonna is a half-game behind the Wolverines at 8-5 for the final host position for the WHAC postseason tournament.
Penn led the Wolverines with 15 points on 6-of-8 shooting while adding seven rebounds. He is now two points shy of 1,500 in his career. Kegley added 14 points and a game-high nine assists, while Crofford finished with 12 points. Crofford is 20 points away from the 1,000-point milestone for his career. Throgmorton chipped in with nine points and three blocks.
The Wolverines shot 22-of-49 from the field, 7-of-20 from deep and 12-of-16 from the line, while being outrebounded 42-24.
The Saints were led by Keith Jordan Jr. with 15 points, while Jackson II added 14 points and 15 rebounds for a double-double.
The Wolverines continue WHAC play on the road at Lawrence Technological University at 8 pm Wednesday in Southfield, Mich.