Rochester, MI – On a frigid winter night Oakland and Valparaiso heated up from behind the arc combining for 20 made three’s as the Golden Grizzlies from Oakland (MI) 6-11 (1-1) roared back from a 15-point second half deficit to defeat the Crusaders 75-70 in a heated Horizon League match-up.
Valparaiso (9-8) (1-1) seemed to be in control the entire game, they led 44-33 at half and pushed the lead to 57-42 at the 12 minute mark of the second half. Then Oakland got hot from behind the arc. Senior guard Travis Bader (20 points) and senior guard Duke Mondy (24 points) each nailed two three’s in a 19-4 run late in the game. Two free throws by Mondy would seal the victory for Oakland, its first win as a member of the Horizon League. Valparaiso was led by senior guard LaVonte Dority’s 20 points.
By making five three’s Saturday night, Oakland’s Bader pushed his career total of three-pointers made to 438 and trails the all-time mark of 457 set by J.J. Redick of Duke by just 19. Bader is considered one of the top shooters in America but many people are still unaware of how good he really is. Bader is a finalist for the Lou Henson Award which goes to the top mid-major player in Division one. At 6’5 Bader shoots a true jump shot with a quick release that makes it almost impossible to block his shot. He uses screens as well as any player in the country and can put the ball on the floor into the lane, draw fouls and get to the FT line where he is 86.7% for his career.
Bader is averaging 22.7 ppg in his final college season and, if he stays healthy, will certainly become the NCAA’s Division 1 all-time leader in three’s made. Don’t think that NBA scouts haven’t noticed Bader’s potential…his stock is rising and who knows how far it will take him.
Derek LeFevre is a Scout and Correspondent for NetScouts Basketball. Thanks to the Horizon League for the photo.