No. 14 Oakland stuns No. 3 Kentucky behind stellar performance by Division II transfer


No. 14 Oakland pulled off the biggest upset so far in the men’s NCAA Tournament with an 80-76 win over No. 3 Kentucky Thursday.

The Golden Grizzlies led by seven with eight minutes to go, their largest lead of the night.

But the Wildcats were quickly able to cut it to two. After a foul on a 3-pointer, red-hot Jack Gohlke (more on him soon) knocked down two of three from the free throw line, putting Oakland up six with less than 3½ minutes left.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM

Jack Gohlke of the Oakland Golden Grizzlies reacts after hitting a 3-pointer against the Kentucky Wildcats during the first half in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at PPG Paints Arena March 21, 2024, in Pittsburgh. (Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)

With less than 90 seconds to go, Kentucky had a chance to take the lead, but the Wildcats turned it over, and DQ Cole hit two free throws after getting fouled, putting Oakland back up four. 

Rob Dillingham made a wild three for the Wildcats, making it a one-point game, but Cole answered with just as crazy of a corner three himself to put the Grizzlies up 78-74 with 37 seconds left.

Kentucky’s Reed Sheppard missed a three, continuing his cold night, and Oakland’s Trey Townsend made one of his two free throws to go up five. Kentucky made a layup to make it a three-point deficit with 3.9 ticks to go, but Townsend again went 1-for-2 from the line after a necessary foul, all but icing the game.

The name of the game was 3-point shooting. Oakland went 15-for-31, while Kentucky was just 9-for-27. Oakland was pitiful from the free-throw line, missing six of its first nine. Oakland did hit 10 of its final 14, while Kentucky went 15-for-20 from the stripe.

Jack Gohlke

Jack Gohlke of the Oakland Golden Grizzlies reacts after scoring a 3-pointer against the Kentucky Wildcats during the first half of the first round of the NCAA Tournament at PPG Paints Arena March 21, 2024, in Pittsburgh.  (Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)

NO. 11 DUQUESNE GETS FIRST MARCH MADNESS WIN SINCE 1969 WITH UPSET OVER NO. 6 BYU

But a bulk of Oakland’s 3-point success came from Division II transfer Gohlke. He went 10-for-20 from deep off the bench, dropping 32 points. He became the fifth player in tournament history to hit at least 10 3-pointers.

In the regular season, he converted 324 3-point attempts and just eight shots from inside the perimeter.

It may be an upset on paper, but Gohlke sounded confident in his squad after the game.

In his postgame interview, he kept it blunt.

“We’re not a Cinderella,” he said. 

Jack Gohlke hyped

Jack Gohlke of the Oakland Golden Grizzlies celebrates after making a 3-pointer against the Kentucky Wildcats during the second half in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at PPG Paints Arena March 21, 2024, in Pittsburgh.  (Joe Sargent/Getty Images)

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

With the loss, it’s Kentucky’s second first-round loss in three years as a top-three seed. The Wildcats also lost to No. 15 St. Peter’s in 2022 as a No. 2 seed.

Oakland will face the winner of No. 6 Texas Tech and No. 11 N.C. State Saturday.

Follow Fox News Digital’s sports coverage on X, and subscribe to the Fox News Sports Huddle newsletter.





Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top