Madonna Defeats MenÂs Basketball Despite 30 From Taylor
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DETROIT — It was junior wing Diante Taylor who provided the fireworks offensivelyÂ Wednesday (Jan. 28) on a night that started with senior guard Darryll Dixon being honored with a pre-game ceremony for becoming the only the second men’s basketball student-athlete to notch 1,500 career points in a Marygrove uniform. Taylor was terrific, setting a new career-high by dropping in 30 points against visiting Madonna, but the Crusaders proved to be too much down the stretch as the Mustangs fell in Detroit, 85-72.
For Dixon, the 1,500-point ceremony was the latest in a long-line of accomplishments as he prepares to wrap up a highly successfulÂ collegiate career on-and-off the court.
The Mustangs struggled to open Wednesday’s WHAC contest, going down by as many as 18 points on two occasions in the first half. The Crusaders jumped out to a 41-23 lead with 1:50 remaining in the first half behind a strong effort in the paint and stymying defense.
Dixon (Flint, Mich./Hamady High School) and Taylor (Battle Creek, Mich./Central High School) were finally able to break through the Crusaders defense late in the first half to spark an 8-0 Mustangs run to close the half. Taylor dropped In five quick points from the field while Dixon connected on three of his game-high 13 free throws to close out the half strong for the Mustangs.
The Mustangs opened the second half on a 25-15 run to knot the game up at 56-56 with 11:04 remaining in the contest on a Taylor three from the corner. The three sparked a loud crowd, which in turn led the Mustangs to their first lead of the game when Elijah Ingram (Detroit, Mich./Consortium High School) connected on his first of two up-and-under baskets to put the Green and Gold ahead, 58-56, with 10:35 left on the game clock.
The second-half surge continued for the Mustangs as the Green and Gold jumped out to a seven-point, 66-59, lead with 7:50 remaining. The lead wouldn’t hold for long as the Crusaders closed the game on a 23-9 run to top the Mustangs by seven in Detroit.
In a highly-competitive game, the Crusaders and Mustangs provided the fans with 40 minutes of basketball that featured six ties and seven lead changes. The Crusaders regained the lead for good in the waning minutes thanks to a 27-for-38 effort from the charity stripe. The free-throw line success, combined with a 46-24 advantage in points in the paint, was enough for the Crusaders to escape the Motor City victorious.
Taylor led all players with a game-high 30 points on 9-of-15 shooting from the field, including a 4-for-9 effort from three-point territory. The junior pulled down a game-high tying 12 rebounds to put together his best all-around effort since arriving at Marygrove three years ago. Dixon followed Taylor with 18 points â 13 of which came from the free throw line.
Tyler Sykes (Sterling Heights, Mich./Stevenson High School) picked up where he left off against the Crusaders by pouring in 14 points in 29 minutes. The redshirt freshman guard tallied a career-high 18 points against the Crusaders when the teams met in Livonia back on Nov. 19, 2014.
The Mustangs received a boost off the bench from Ingram as the sophomore forward dropped in nine points in 15 minutes of action Wednesday evening.
Chris Dierker led the Crusaders with 20 points and 12 rebounds. Dierker keyed the late Crusaders comeback by tallying nine of his team’s final 23 points, including a perfect 7-of-7 effort from the free-throw line in that span.
The Mustangs visit Grand Rapids on Saturday (Jan. 31) for a 3 p.m. tip-off against the Aquinas College Saints. Radio coverage, provided by Aquinas, can be found at michigansportsradio.net.
MEN’S BASKETBALL CONTACT: Tim Johnston |Â [emailÂ protected]Â |Â @tjohnston56
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Category: Men's Basketball