The Blitz: Jan. 22, 2020

Michael Pearce, Sports Editor

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The Oakland University women’s basketball team was the only team with home games this week once again, as multiple teams took to the road to compete for the second full week in January.

Men’s Basketball

After defeating Cleveland State and breaking a three game losing streak, the men’s basketball team headed to Wisconsin to take on the University of Green Bay and the University of Milwaukee in a weekend trip.

Against Green Bay, fans and media were surprised to see the Golden Grizzlies official Twitter account tweet a bombshell of an announcement. Point guard Rashad Williams, who was previously forced to sit out the year due to his transfer, was cleared by the NCAA for play, and made his first start as a Golden Grizzly.

To start the game, Oakland took a commanding lead, eventually losing it a little. However, the team led for 16 minutes and 20 seconds in the first half. Going into halftime, Oakland had a one-possession lead, 38-35.

In the second half, the Green Bay offense was able to take over and pull ahead of the Golden Grizzlies, who have struggled on offense all year. The Phoenix eventually put the game out of reach with two free throws, and they won by a final score of 73-69. Brad Brechting led the team with 26 points and 14 rebounds.

Two days later, the team took to Milwaukee to face the Panthers. In an almost identical score, the Panthers defeated Oakland 73-68. Xavier Hill-Mais led the team in scoring, with 20, but the Panthers were able to continually keep Oakland at bay.

Oakland shot 10-19 from the free throw line, while Milwaukee hit their free throws more often, going 12-16. Williams made his second start in a row after being cleared by the NCAA, going 2-11 from 3-point range and 2-12 from the field.

The men’s basketball returns home for the first time in two weeks, as they host the University of Illinois-Chicago Flames on Thursday, Jan. 23 and the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis Jaguars on Saturday, Jan. 25.

Swim & Dive

The swim and dive teams took on Michigan State University on Saturday, Jan. 18, falling by a few points on each side, 165-135 for the men and 151-148 for the women.

Once again, Katie Colwell tallied multiple top finishes, as she went four for four in her races. Colwell recorded two solo first place finishes and two as a part of a relay team. On the men’s side, Marko Khotynetskyi continued his hot start to the season, finishing first in the 100 and 200 backstroke, as well as the 200 IM.

Susan LaGrand recorded two first place finishes as well, taking first in both the 100 free and 200 backstroke events. In a close meet, the women were able to take all four relay events, and both teams recorded 16 first place finishes as a unit.

The swim and dive teams will be coming back to the Oakland Aquatic Center on Friday, Jan. 24 and Saturday, Jan. 25 against Horizon League opponents IUPUI and Cleveland State in some Horizon League action.