Oakland drops epic high-scoring duel to Bowling Green

On Friday, Nov. 11, the Oakland University men’s basketball team welcomed the Bowling Green Falcons to the O’rena for an early season non-conference matchup. It was a high-scoring affair, but Oakland ultimately fell short, 87-82.

The loss followed a 92-27 demolition of Defiance College in the season opener, in which 10 different Grizzlies saw the floor. The Golden Grizzlies brought back star point guard Jalen Moore, who missed the season opener with an apparent ankle injury. 

Moore scored 18 points in 38 minutes in his season debut on Friday night, but it wasn’t enough as Oakland came up five points short.

The two teams traded buckets in the early going, and neither squad was able to establish more than a six-point lead until a 3-pointer by Bowling Green’s Kaden Metheny gave the Falcons a seven-point lead with 90 seconds to play in the first half. 

Trey Townsend connected on a free throw late in the first half to trim the lead to six, and Oakland found itself trailing at halftime against a familiar MAC opponent.

Bowling Green held Oakland off for much of the second half, but the Golden Grizzlies fought back and tied the game at 68 with a Moore 3-pointer with 8:30 left to play.

Just a few minutes later, a pair of Townsend free throws gave Oakland a 72-71 lead with 7:03 left to play. Townsend was clutch down the stretch, and Oakland held a one-point lead with less than a minute to play.

However, Oakland’s 82-81 lead would be their last, as the Golden Grizzlies failed to score in the game’s final minutes and the Falcons came away with a win.

Townsend led the way with a career high 23-point performance in 32 minutes on the floor. The third-year player shot an efficient 8-10 from the floor, including 7-10 from the free throw line. 

Moore was the team’s second-leading scorer, while Rocket Watts and Blake Lampman finished with 13 and 11 points, respectively.

Keaton Hervey finished one point away from a double-double. The senior leader hauled in 11 rebounds, but finished with nine points in a strong effort.

After head coach Greg Kampe raved about his team’s depth heading into the season — which is something it didn’t have in years past — Oakland’s five starters carried much of the workload in the loss.

The aforementioned Townsend played 32 minutes, and Lampman had 32 as well. Hervey finished with 34, Watts with 35 and Moore with 38.

Chris Conway, Osei Price and Will Shepherd all played as well, albeit very sparingly.

Oakland developed its first losing streak of the season in the following game with a 91-62 defeat at the hands of the Oklahoma State Cowboys. 

The Golden Grizzlies are currently 1-2 on the season. Ironically, their 1-2 record is the same as last season, so Oakland has been in this situation before.

The next two games consist of an away game against Toledo and a home game against Eastern Michigan. Following those two games, the team will head to the Bahamas to compete in the 2022 Nassau Championship.