Men’s basketball falls to Spartans in second consecutive loss

Golden Grizzlies struggle with shooting against MSU and Northeastern

Melissa Deatsch, Sports Editor

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The Golden Grizzlies dropped their second consecutive game on Wednesday, losing to the Spartans of Michigan State (8-5) 77-65. Oakland headed to the Breslin Center hoping to bring home the program’s first-ever win against the Spartans, but returned home empty-handed.

This loss marks the second game of a tough week for the Golden Grizzlies, which includes three games in four days. The Black and Gold have not gotten the results they’d hoped for in the first two, bringing their season record to 9-3.

Offense has been the most notable struggle for the Golden Grizzlies this week, as the team has been unable to make the shots they’ve been draining all season. Oakland shot 21-for-57 from the field against the Spartans and 8-for-24 from beyond the arc.

In the game against Northeastern the day before, the numbers showed a similar struggle. The Golden Grizzlies shot 22-for-63 from the field and 6-for-26 from three.

“They played good, but again, we can’t put the ball in the basket when it counts,” said head coach Greg Kampe in a GrizzVision interview after the game. “We played extremely, extremely . . . stupid’s the right word, but you don’t want to say that. We didn’t play smart.”

In addition to their inability to score, Kampe also noted his frustration with the amount of turnovers Oakland had against the Spartans. The Golden Grizzlies gave up the ball 21 times.

Oakland had four players score in double digits. Stevie Clark led the way with 13 points, closely followed by Martez Walker and Jalen Hayes, both with 11. Sherron Dorsey-Walker also reached double digits with 10 points for the Golden Grizzlies.

Hayes’ 11 points came in just 12 minutes of play for the junior forward. He spent much of the game in foul trouble, racking up three fouls in the first 10 minutes of the first half. His fourth came within the first minute of the second half, and he went on to foul out with 7:46 left in the game.

“They couldn’t guard him,” Kampe said of Hayes. “A lot of people can’t guard him. We were getting him the basketball. He was playing good. A lot of [his foul trouble] is his fault. Stay away from it. You see what they’re doing and how they’re calling the game. Stay away from it.”

Oakland faces another quick turnaround as they return to the Blacktop on Friday to take on the Georgia Bulldogs (7-3).

“I think defensively we played pretty good but we went another game without being able to make shots,” Hayes said.  “We’re feeling great headed into [Friday’s] game.  We’re just moving on and getting ready for Georgia.”

“I need to get over this first, and once the morning comes, I’ll be fine and we’ll get ready to go for Georgia,” Kampe said.

Oakland will set out to snap their losing streak on Friday, Dec. 23, when they host the Georgia Bulldogs at 7 p.m. The game will be broadcast on TV20 and ESPN3, as well as WDFN-AM (1130).