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‘It’s about time’ for Detroit Mercy, which snaps skid against Oakland

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The series is over.

Detroit Mercy, behind 27 points from Antoine Davis and a flurry of 3 pointers in the middle of the second half, defeated Oakland (82-72) on Saturday afternoon at the O’Rena in Rochester.

The game ended Oakland’s 10-game winning streak in the series, giving the Titans their first win over their main competitor in 1,472 days. Detroit Mercy’s last win in the series was January 13, 2017.

Detroit Mercy head coach Mike Davis was 7-0 before Saturday.

“To be honest, our guys need to understand how big this game is,” said Davis. “There’s a look into your eye and an approach that you need to have.

“And I haven’t seen it until today. This game means a lot to the fans, and if you want to be a Detroit Titan you have to understand what it means to play in this game.

“It’s the first time you’ve seen us fight from the second half (Friday) as if it means something.”

Detroit Mercy (4-8, 3-5 Horizon League) lost their first three games to Oakland this year and were 27 points behind in the second half of Friday before charging back to one point. Oakland eventually won.

But the Titans continued early Saturday and scored 18 points in the first 3 minutes and 43 seconds.

Davis, the junior guard who has been one of the nation’s top scorers for the last two seasons but has fought his way out of the net this season, had nine of those points.

BOX SCORE: Detroit Mercy 82, Oakland 72

When the game ended, Davis let out a huge roar and continued to scream as he walked down the tunnel to the locker room.

“The time has come,” said Davis, who was 5 versus 10 with 3 hands, adding seven assists. “Even though we’ve had the team to beat them over the years, it was always because they were tougher than us. Today we were tougher than them.”

Noah Waterman, the 6-foot-10 security guard from Detroit Mercy and Niagara Transfer, scored 18 with four 3-pointers and had eight rebounds as he’s starting to warm up after almost a month of quarantine since training began in late summer.

Dwayne Rose Jr., Derrick’s nephew, who started on Friday as a reward for his comeback, scored 16 and Bul Kuol had 10 points and nine rebounds.

For Oakland (6-13, 6-6), Rashad Willaims scored 24 and Jalen Moore scored 23. Moore also had 11 assists, one day after posting Oakland’s first triple-double since Kay Felder in the 2016-17 season.

Oakland's Greg Kampe celebrates victory over Detroit Mercy on Friday.

But it wasn’t enough for the Golden Grizzlies, who switched defenses late in the second half to give Davis and Kuol a triangle – and it worked on multiple turnovers. But the Golden Grizzlies didn’t capitalize on the offensive – a missed dunk by Daniel Oladapo is noticed – and didn’t get some of the calls they were looking for. An attempt to steal Moore and quickly break it resulted in Detroit’s Matt Johnson stripping him and not being called for the foul. The next time he had possession, Oladapo snapped a steal but threw the ball away. And by then, a minute before the end, things were boiling over.

Oakland coach Greg Kampe and Moore both had technical questions with less than a minute to go, sending Davis down the free-throw line for four. He made them all, increased the lead to eight, and almost sealed it.

Technique likely didn’t change the result – Oakland should have started the fouling anyway, and Detroit Mercy is taking their free throws – but it was a tough road to finishing another good game between rivals.

“Jalen has just defended his coach,” said Kampe. “Anyone who’s upset should be upset with me. That basically ended the game. In short, the series is over and we have to move on.

“I’ve said all year that Detroit is a really good basketball team. I’ve told everyone that. You’re very talented, very well trained, all the things I’ve said all year you probably did in the second Seen halfway last night.

“If they hit all the cylinders, they are so good.”

Micah Parrish had eight rebounds for Oakland, as did Zion Young, who didn’t score a night after going 9v9 with 3-pointers and finishing on 28 points.

Oakland’s winning streak was the longest in the series. Detroit Mercy won the first 10 of the 1973 rivalry. Since 2000, Detroit Mercy has won only four times in 21 attempts. Oakland had won the top three that season, including Friday’s 86-81 game.

More statesmen

Akron 79, (at) Western Michigan 68: Loren Cristian Jackson had 32 points and made 13 of 14 off the free throw line. He added six templates.

Mikal Dawson had 13 points for Akron (8-3, 6-2 Mid-American Conference) for his fourth straight win. Enrique Freeman added 10 rebounds.

Greg Lee hit a career high of 22 points for the Broncos (2-9, 1-5), whose losing streak reached five. Adrian Martin added 11 points.

Miami (Ohio) 85, (at) Eastern Michigan 63: Dae Dae Grant had a career height of 28 points and made a career height of six 3-pointers with only one missing and six rebounds added.

Dalonte Brown had 16 points and seven rebounds for Miami, Ohio (7-4, 4-2 Mid-American Conference).

Miami (Ohio) dominated the first half, leading 42-23 at halftime. Both teams set season records in the first half. The RedHawks ’42 points set their mark for the season, while the Eagles’ 23 points were the lowest of the season.

Drew Lowder had 11 points for the Eagles (4-7, 1-6). Yeikson Montero added eight rebounds.

(At) Northwood 67, Wayne State 66: Jack Ammerman made a 3-pointer with 1 second left to win for Northwood (4-2). Scott Maurion scored 20 and Ammerman 13 for Northwood. Brailen Neely scored 19 and Darian Owens-White 14 for Wayne State (3-3).

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Twitter: @ tonypaul1984

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