Oakland's basketball season came to an end with a heartbreaking 50-47 overtime loss to the Brentwood Bruins in the state quarterfinals Thursday at MTSU in the Murphy Center.
Although a tough loss for the Patriots, with only three seniors (Jaden Jamison, Lamarius Jackson and Carter Baughn), the future is bright for Oakland.
“It always gets back to doing what we do and being well coached,” Oakland coach Troy Bond said. “It’s going into a situation and sticking to your game plan. I credit these kids all year for being tough dudes when it was on the line. I hate for it to end like it did, but it was just mental mistakes and simple things.
“These guys will bounce back, the ones coming back. They got a taste this year and that’s great because they’ll take that taste and get back at it again.”
Oakland led for three quarters until Brentwood took a 38-32 lead early in the fourth amidst a 12-2 run, but the Patriots battled back as DeArre McDonald scored seven straight to tie the game and send it to overtime.
McDonald was restricted to just seven minutes in the first half due to foul trouble, but came alive for 15 second half points and a game high 17 to provide the spark Oakland needed to stay in the game.
“I was just fighting for these dudes," McDonald said. “I would do anything for them. I was just trying to calm everything down and do what we do best. Play our game.”
The first half was a low-scoring, high-paced defensive game, giving the athletic Patriots an advantage. They held the Bruins to just 20 percent shooting in the first. However, foul trouble and failure to execute at times burdened and kept Oakland from pulling away.
“They (Brentwood) did a great job on the glass and their size definitely bothered us,” Bond said. “To be honest, us not executing frustrates us more than anything. Not our best game by far. Sometimes this environment will do that to you. I think we got caught in the moment a couple of times.”
With McDonald and Lamarius Jackson in foul trouble and Jamison tending to a bloody lip in the second period, MJ Grant came in with quality minutes for the Patriots and continued into the second half until fouling out in the fourth quarter. Grant finished with six points and five rebounds.
“Today I just came in ready to play my role,” Grant said. “Coming back (from illness) I kind of had the jitters because I missed a couple of practices. I was just trying to play even and do what I had to for us to get the win.”
Oakland had the ball with 23 seconds left in overtime down just one, but missed a shot attempt and had to foul with 2.5 seconds remaining. Preston Moore hit both for Brentwood and Oakland was not able to get a good last shot in the final seconds.
Brentwood (50): Harry Lackey 14, John Windley 8, Cole Massey 8, Ben Mills 8, Jon Franklin Burks 8, Preston Moore 4
Oakland (47): DeArre McDonald 17, Ray Tyler 11, Jaden Jamison 8, MJ Grant 6, DD Anderson 5