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Second Half Comeback Not Enough for Men’s Basketball

DETROIT — After going down by as many as 17 points early in the contest, Marygrove men’s basketball pushed back to within three points before the visiting Wolverines of Michigan-Dearborn pulled away to win, 84-74, in Detroit on Saturday (Jan. 24). The 10-point setback drops the Mustangs to 3-19 overall and 1-13 in WHAC play. The Wolverines improve to 7-14 overall and 4-10 in conference action with the victory.

There was a silver lining in Saturday’s conference setback to Michigan-Dearborn as senior guard Darryll Dixon (Flint, Mich./Hamady High School) finished the game with 16 points – a mark that lifted him to an even 1,500 career points in a Marygrove uniform. With 1,500 career points, Dixon becomes just the second men’s basketball player to reach the mark, joining former Mustang Marcus Hopkins in rarefied air.

Dixon will be honored with a brief pre-game ceremony Wednesday (Jan. 28) when the Mustangs host Madonna University.

Second-year head coach Craig Covington and the Mustangs fell behind by as many as 17 points in the first half when the Wolverines shot out to a 34-17 lead with 5:03 remaining before halftime. The Mustangs closed the final 5:03 of the first half on a 7-3 run to climb to within 13 at the break, 37-24.

Khalil Beidoun was a tough cover for the Mustangs early, pouring in 12 points and corralling eight rebounds in 16 first-half minutes.

The Mustangs stayed within striking distance by relying on offensive balance. Ta’Kein Dixson (Atlanta, Ga./Loganville High School) dropped in a team-high five points in the first half to lead six Mustangs with at least three points in the opening 20 minutes of action.

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The Mustangs pulled to within five, 55-50, when Dixson connected on an old-fashioned three-point play with 8:28 left on the frozen second half clock. Through the first 11:32 of second-half play, the Mustangs outscored the Wolverines 26-18 behind contributions from a host of athletes donning Gold uniforms. The five-point deficit was cut to a one-possession game one minute later when Dixson knocked down two of his six free throws on the afternoon.

Down three, 57-54, the Mustangs ran out of steam as the Wolverines gradually pulled away to top the Green and Gold by 10 points.

The Mustangs were led by Dixson with a collegiate career-high 20 points on 6-of-13 shooting from the floor and a perfect 6-for-6 from the charity stripe. Dixon tallied 16 while putting together a well-rounded game with seven assists and seven rebounds in 36 minutes. Diante Taylor (Battle Creek, Mich./Central High School) was strong again for the Mustangs, posting 15 points and a team-high eight rebounds, while JuJuan Armstrong (Detroit, Mich./Michigan-Dearborn) chipped in with 14 points and four steals.

Jamiel Strickland led five Wolverines in double figures scoring with 20 points. Strickland added seven assists and seven boards in the win.

The difference in the game was the Wolverines ability to attack the post as the visitors took a 52-39 advantage in points in the paint. The Mustangs shot 39.1 percent (27-of-69) compared to the Wolverines 51.6 percent (32-of-62) clip Saturday afternoon.

The Mustangs remain in the Motor City to host Madonna University Wednesday (Jan. 28) at 8 p.m. The game will be covered live on the Mustang Sports Network at

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Category: Men's Basketball

Today - 20 May 2024