Men’s basketball beats Purdue-Fort Wayne, remains unbeaten in conference play


Sophie Hume

The Golden Grizzlies defeated the Mastodons to improve to 7-0 in league play.

With an amazingly dominant second half performance, the Golden Grizzlies fought back from a deficit and won their game against the Purdue-Fort Wayne Mastodons on Saturday. 

Despite the fouls called on Jamal Cain [four fouls in the first 10 minutes], the first half of the game was an astounding display between two evenly matched offensive teams, as they traded buckets back and forth for the duration of the game. The Golden Grizzlies only held a lead once late in the first half, despite tying up the game several times. 

Every time the Mastodons gained momentum and tried to pull away with one of their leads, the Golden Grizzlies grabbed on and caught back up with another offensive burst. Both teams were playing solid defense, as the score stayed deadlocked at 24-22 for multiple minutes before any movement could be seen on the board. 

The first half ended at a score of 36-30, with the Mastodons heading into halftime with the lead. Coming out of the half, both teams continued their stellar defensive efforts to halt the score at 38-33 for a few minutes. 

The Golden Grizzlies began to pick up steam and grasped their first lead of the second half on the back of a Micah Parrish three-point shot. This would be a lead that the Grizzlies never surrendered, as they rode the wave of momentum out to the final bell. The final score ended at 76-68 in favor of the Golden Grizzlies. 

Over the course of the game, both teams struggled with their shooting until the final bell. The victors, the Golden Grizzlies, just slightly edged the Mastodons in both field goal and three-point percentage, shooting 43.6% versus 39% and 30.4% versus 28.9%, respectively. Despite this, the Mastodons led the Grizzlies in every other major stat category. 

The bad part about this — is they also led the Grizzlies in total turnovers and fouls, with 13 turnovers to the Grizzlies’ 12 and 23 fouls to the Grizzlies’ 15, which [when coupled with their poor shooting numbers] would spell out their failure to hold on to the lead they established in the early stages of the game. 

After the game, Head Coach Greg Kampe talked to #GrizzVision saying, “Well, you saw what happened to Michigan State today. I mean [in] January, it’s really hard. Only the really, really good teams survive that and we’ve had good teams before that have lost games like these. These things happen, and you have to have unbelievable character and you have to have guys that can make plays even when things aren’t going good.” 

He praised his players for sticking through the adversity of the first half and coming back to play great basketball and take home the win despite the rough start. 

The Golden Grizzlies will return to the court against the Milwaukee Panthers on Jan. 20 at 8 p.m. in Milwaukee.