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Bruce is back and ready to give Bearcats a boost

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PHOTO SOURCE: Binghamton Athletics

VESTAL (WBNG) -- Thomas Bruce is back on the Binghamton men's basketball roster after an injury sidelined him for two years.

Bruce said there was a time when he wasn't sure if he'd play college basketball again after suffering a concussion ahead of the 2018-2019 season.

"Because of the pandemic, everything going on, all the work it took to get back, it's just been a long road," said Bruce.

The 6-foot-9 senior center's last game was in February of 2018. His junior season, he led the conference in blocks with 61 and averaged 11.1 points per game. He also earned All-Defensive Team honors after his 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons.

Entering this season, Bruce is looking to add to what he's already done well.

"For those who have known me, they know I like to play above the rim, a lot of dunks, highlights type of things," he said. "In the offseason I've been working a lot on my perimeter game, looking to bring that to the game, continue with my defensive effort."

Bruce returns to a Bearcats team with a number of new faces.

"It's kind of funny, coming back to a team where you know, no one really," said Bruce.

Practices are underway at Binghamton, and Bruce said it hasn't been difficult to mesh with the team.

"It's been pretty smooth," he said. "We played a couple games of pickup, getting in shooting groups and things like that so it's been fun learning everyone's game."

With no start date in place for the upcoming season, the expectations for the Bearcats haven't changed.

"We're coming in looking like a regular season" he said. "Coming in, wanting to win."

Bruce is more than ready to be part of it again.

"Sometimes it gets hard to keep the head down and keep pushing through it. You just have to stay strong, stick to your thing perfect your craft as people say, so that's what I tried to do and you know, hoping to show my work," said Bruce.

Nicole Menner

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