The Blitz: March 11, 2020

Michael Pearce, Sports Editor

While both Oakland University basketball teams saw their seasons come to an end at the start of March, other Golden Grizzlies teams’ seasons have just begun.

Men’s Basketball

After winning by 21 on their home court against Cleveland State, the men’s basketball team traveled to Green Bay to take on the Phoenix in the Horizon League quarterfinals.

The second half proved to be the defining half of basketball, with Green Bay taking over on their home court, winning 78-63. The game was tied 30-30 at halftime, but the Phoenix found their shot and pulled away in a lopsided second half.

Senior Brad Brechting only logged 13 minutes as he dealt with back spasms, and senior Xavier Hill-Mais received double teams every time he got the ball in the post. Rashad Williams scored 15 points but went 2-12 from 3-point range. Oakland turned the ball over 17 times and shot 5-29 from 3-point range as a team.

This ended the Golden Grizzlies’ season, denying them a trip to Indianapolis for the semifinals and championship game.

“I was really happy about how well we played in our last five games and were able to play so well in the tournament game at home,” Head Coach Greg Kampe said. “But, when you lose and your season is over, it’s always devastating. It’s hard to talk about the future right now because you just feel so bad for Brad and X.”

Women’s Basketball

The women’s basketball team traveled to Wisconsin as well for the tournament, except their game against Milwaukee was in the opening round. After leading for most of the game, the Panthers pulled ahead in the fourth quarter to eliminate Oakland from the tournament by a final score of 73-65.

Jalisha Terry led the team with 13 points and four assists. Alona Blackwell scored 11 points, adding three 3-pointers.

“We led the game for — I don’t know — 30 some odd minutes,” Acting Head Coach Ke’Sha Blanton said. “They gave it everything they had. It just came down to Milwaukee being able to hit some big shots late and getting to the free throw line, and we weren’t able to get there.”

Softball

Softball took part in the Louisville Tournament, which took place from Friday, March 6 – Sunday, March 8. The Golden Grizzlies went 0-5 in the tournament, facing the University of Illinois, Northwestern University and the University of Evansville.

The closest game was Saturday, March 7 against Evansville. Oakland led for most of the game, scoring one run in the first inning then two runs in each of the next two innings.

After a scoreless fifth inning, Evansville broke open the game, scoring four runs in the top of the sixth inning. A three-run home run from the Evansville center fielder gave them a 7-5 lead, which they held onto to win.

Four Golden Grizzlies drove in runs against Evansville in the two run loss. Shannon Carr drove in two runs with her second inning RBI double, and later on a walk, the fourth ball she took led to a run scored on a wild pitch. Marisa Muglia and Rachel Zerona both drove in runs of their own with RBI singles.

Next weekend is the last weekend before Horizon League play begins for the softball team, as they travel to Kentucky again to compete in the Murray State Tournament.