Gents Fall at Oakland, 78-65
Saturday, February 7, 2009

ROCHESTER, Mich.—With a needed road win and looking to sweep the series, the Centenary men’s basketball team met Oakland on Saturday evening, falling 78-65 in Summit League action.

Centenary (7-17, 5-7 Summit) found it hard to narrow a late-game deficit, as it is now 5-7 in league play. Shooting struggles haunted the Gents in the second half with a 24 percent performance from the floor.

Nick Stallings nailed a three to open the game at the 19:38 mark and Maxx Nakwaasah’s lay-up at 14:39 gave Centenary a 10-point lead (13-3) following three consecutive three-pointers by Stallings and Chase Adams.

Another three by Adams ended a 13-0 run by the Golden Grizzlies to even the game at 16 apiece with 10:28 left to play. Gary Redus II drained a three near the seven-minute mark, giving the Gents a two-point lead, but a lay-up by Oakland tied the game back up at 21, just 15 seconds later. 

Centenary managed to go on an 8-0 run, taking a 29-21 lead with five minutes left in the half, but Oakland (15-11, 8-5 Summit) didn’t let up, going on its own 8-0 run in the final minute, while Centenary missed three shots to end the half at 35-34 in favor of the Golden Grizzlies.

The Gents’ only lead (36-35) in the final 20 minutes came on a Nakwaasah lay-up to open the half at 18:47. A three by Erik Kangas at 12:25 gave Oakland a 5 point advantage over Centenary, but an Adams’ three found the bottom of the net, to make it a one-point game, 47-46.

 Consistent second half play by the Golden Grizzlies allowed them to go up by 10, 63-53 on a lay-up by Keith Benson with 5:33 remaining. They then, took advantaged of Centenary’s shooting struggles and went up by as many as 16 (70-54), the most of the night, at the 3:36 mark.

Adams’ fifth three of the game, narrowed the deficit to eight, but that was the closest the Gents would get with 1:11 to play. Five final free throws by Oakland ended the game, 78-65. 

Centenary shot 32.8 percent (19-of-58) from the floor, while Oakland remained consistently strong, shooting 47.8 percent (22-of-46). The Golden Grizzlies out rebounded the Gents, 42-30.

Adams’ 23 points and 5 assists led Centenary. Redus chipped in with 13 points and Stallings added 12 and nine rebounds. Benson led all scorers with 26 points. Kangas ended with 19. 

Centenary will be back in action on Thursday, as it host IUPUI at 7:00 p.m.