Men’s basketball claws back for sensational 92-89 overtime victory over Cleveland State


Maggie Willard

The Oakland men’s basketball team suffered their first conference loss of the season on Thursday.

Summer Weathers, Sports Reporter

On Saturday, Feb. 4, the Cleveland State Vikings headed to the O’rena for an unforgettable men’s basketball matchup. Oakland got the best of Cleveland State, 92-89, in one of the most wild games in recent program history.

Right off the bat, Oakland’s Jalen Moore, Keaton Hervey and Blake Lampman struck first. Cleveland State gave Oakland a great scoring run, though. The former team’s offense did not light up right away, but when it did, they found themselves trailing by only two after 14 minutes of play.

The Vikings tied it all up at 15, but it was Hervey who tightened the screws by knocking down a triple. The Vikings’ game plan relied on shots behind the arc and eventually were mulling Oakland with 3-point shooting, going 5-6 to end the first half at a 36-28 score. 

The Vikings needed to be stopped in their tracks as they came out just how they ended the first half. Lampman stopped the bleeding with a big-time and-one 3-pointer.  

Cleveland State’s Tristan Enaruna was the team’s scoring leader, ending with 25 points as they had their biggest lead of 16 with just a little under 10 minutes left. The Grizzlies made runs, eventually cutting it to single digits. Trey Townsend was solid in the paint as he headed to the line for free throws.

Cleveland State’s Enaruna would knock down the 3-pointer, but Lampman gladly answered the call with a triple, as well, that cut Oakland’s deficit to two at an 82-80 score with only 10 seconds remaining. A bad inbound play by the Vikings resulted in an Osei Price steal that turned the O’rena up as he gave it off to Hervey but was fouled on the play as he tried to lay it up.

Hervey completed both free throws, sending the game to overtime. Coach Greg Kampe had some things to say about this incredible defensive play. 

“Osei had the steal of the year,” Kampe said. 

The Vikings took the lead 85-84 to begin overtime, but Lampman and Townsend then made free throws that put the Grizzlies up by three. Cleveland State cut it to one but were unable to get it done down the stretch as the Grizzlies closed out the game with more free throw shooting as time wound down. It was an incredible, overtime team win on the blacktop. 

Lampman, who is one of the best defensive shooters in the Horizon League, is certainly living up to that. He had a career-high 22 points and a career-high in blocks, with four.

To be one of the go-to guys to knock down crucial shots when it is needed most, he had some things to say on what the Grizzlies are looking to bring against Green Bay, as well as the key to maintaining their momentum.

“I’m just happy to be out there with the guys,” Lampman said. “It’s a big game for us. We take every game one at a time. We’ll be ready come Thursday – just staying consistent with our training, taking days off and then getting back into the swing of things. I know a lot of guys played a lot of minutes tonight, so we don’t need to be going crazy on off days, but staying consistent with our routine, and we’ll be good to go.” 

All of this talent the Golden Grizzlies bring to the floor shows why they are a team that should not be counted out. The Golden Grizzlies will now have a few days off before heading to Wisconsin to play the Green Bay Phoenix on Thursday, Feb. 9 at 8 p.m. on ESPN+.