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Oakland dominates Detroit Mercy in regional rivalry

On February 11, 2020

BY JORGE REYNA / VN SPORTS EDITOR

After a 78-69 loss in December to their regional rivals, the Oakland Grizzlies, the Titans hoped for retribution at their Jan. 31 “Red Out” game.

But the talent of Rashad Williams and the rest of the Grizzlies thwarted the Titans.

For Detroit Mercy, the game revolved around the shooting of Antoine Davis and the inside game of Justin Miller.

Davis ended with 26 points; Miller, 15 points.

Oakland’s Williams ended the game with 37 points and shot 7-16 from 3-point range.

Oakland coach Greg Kampe said the games against the Titans are the most important of the year.

“It is a rivalry, and as long as I’m the coach at Oakland, it is the two most important games of the year. It’s an important game for Oakland and our fan base,” he said.

Kampe’s strategy was to shut down the perimeter shooting of Titans Brad Calipari and Willy Isiani.

“I’d rather give up the two points in the paint and not let Calipari and Isiani get going,” he said. “We knew Davis was going to get going but we have a blueprint on how to guard Davis.”

Although Titan head coach Mike Davis was not available after the game, assistant coach Mike Davis Jr., his son, spoke to the media about the team’s lack of execution and effort.

Coming into the Oakland contest, Detroit Mercy had won its two previous games.

Davis Jr. said the team that showed up to play Oakland was flat and not the same team that had defeated UIC and IUPUI days earlier.

“They had a mental edge over us,” he said. “When we lost at Green Bay I wasn’t mad because we battled. Oakland is nowhere near the team they had last year, but their players are in tune with the game plan.”

Oakland has owned Detroit Mercy in their rivalry, racking up a 13-4 advantage since December 2000.

During the recent game, Detroit Mercy students and fans received a shirt that said “Defend the Hall.”

But by the end of the game, Oakland fans could claim the historic hall by saying, “This is our house.”

 

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