Men’s basketball falls to Oakland 74-76 in dramatic match

Norse 2-1 in conference, 12-4 overall

Ty DeBonis, Reporter

The Northern Kentucky University men’s basketball team made the trip up I-75 on Thursday to Rochester, Michigan for a Horizon League tilt against Oakland. The Norse fell to the Golden Grizzlies 74-76 in a hard-fought contest.

The Norse were led by sophomore guard Jalen Tate and junior guard Tyler Sharpe, who scored 14 points apiece. Tate also grabbed 6 rebounds and had 6 assists. Senior forward Drew McDonald chipped in with 13 points and led the Black and Gold in rebounding grabbing 9 boards. Senior guard Zaynah Robinson added 10 points and 4 assists.

NKU battled back from a five-point deficit midway through the first half, then went on a 7-0 run and held Oakland scoreless in the final 2:36 to end the first half, leading 42-32. The Norse shot 53 percent from the field at the half.

The Norse then lead for the first 13 minutes of the second half until Oakland hit back-to-back three pointers to give them their first lead of the second half 63-61 at the 6:56 mark.  NKU never regained the lead from that point. Oakland has now won five of its last six games against the Norse.

Northern Kentucky shot 50 percent from the field but only 29 percent from three point range. NKU outrebounded the Golden Grizzlies 33-25.

With the loss, the Norse fall to 12-4 overall and 2-1 in the Horizon League. Oakland improves to 7-9 overall and 3-0 in the conference. 

NKU doesn’t have far to go for its next game as it will stay in the state of Michigan to take on Detroit Mercy on Saturday at 1 p.m. Watch the game live on ESPN+.