Grizzlies take down Rochester College

By Dan Fenner

After dropping the first two games of the new season, the Oakland University men’s basketball team picked up its first victory Saturday, defeating cross-town opponent Rochester College 97-63 at the O’Rena.


Coming off a dreadful shooting performance against Wisconsin Wednesday in which the team shot just 27 percent from the field, the Golden Grizzlies improved against the Warriors, converting 56 percent of their field goals attempts.

The game was relatively close for the first ten minutes before OU went on a 13-0 to open up an 18-point lead.

Leading the way for Oakland with 21 points and nine rebounds was junior Keith Benson, who nearly recorded his third double-double in as many games.

Junior guard Larry Wright had a season-high 16 points for OU, and seemed to break out of the early season shooting slump he was mired in. He also recorded a career-high five assists.

“For Larry, it’s a matter of time,” head coach Greg Kampe said. “He averaged 10 points a game in the Big East and it’s not easy to sit out a year and not play. It takes time to pick up where you left off two years ago. It takes getting yelled at, making mistakes and getting through bad times.”

Oakland utilized its bench throughout the game, particularly in the second half. Sophomore Drew Maynard made several plays to bring the home crowd to its feet, including a couple of slam-dunks, on his way to a 14-point performance.

Will Hudson and Derick Nelson also scored in double figures, as Oakland had its best offensive output of the season Saturday.

Senior captain Johnathon Jones had a surprisingly quiet night, scoring just three points and attempting only three shots from the field after leading the Grizzlies in scoring in their previous two games.

But Jones’ play was all according to plan, Kampe said after the game.

“We went to our dribble drive in the second half and I thought (Jones) did a great job of getting to the basket and kicking it out – Because he was penetrating, Derick Nelson had drives to the basket,” he said.

For Rochester College, senior Adrian Schaffer led the way with a team-high 20 points in defeat.

Oakland (1-2) will take to the road this week for a pair of out-of-state games. The team will play Monday against Tennessee Tech, and then travel to Kansas to take on the nation’s top-ranked Jayhawks Wednesday. OU’s next home contest is Nov. 28 against Central Arkansas.