ROCHESTER, Mich. - The Oakland Golden Grizzlies were able to leave their home court victorious Saturday evening (Jan. 26) after a 67-60 win over the Western Illinois Fighting Leathernecks.
Although Western dropped to 16-5 overall and 8-2 in Summit League play, the Leathernecks remain in first-place in the conference standings. Oakland improves to 10-13 overall, and 5-4 in league play.
Just like last year, Western and OU split their season series, 1-1.
Remy Roberts-Burnett led the way for the Leathernecks, scoring a season-high 16 points on a 7-of-10 shooting from the floor, and 2-of-2 from three. His 16 points also tied his career-best. The sophomore also had a team-high four assists.
Parks also had 12 rebounds, picking up his eighth double-double of the season, four assists, two blocks, and a steal.
Ceola Clark III was the only other Leatherneck to score Saturday, scoring nine points, while dishing out four assists.
Western shot better from the field overall, 51.1% compared to Oakland's 38%, but Oakland was able to get to the free throw line 29 times (22-of-29), while the Leathernecks only attempted 10 shots from the charity stripe (5-of-10).
The Leathernecks committed a season-high 19 fouls to Oakland's 15, and had 15 turnovers to OU's nine.
Oakland's Travis Bader finished with a game-high 26 points, while OU's Duke Mondy had 18.
Houpt, Clark, and Houpt triples kicked off Western Illinois' scoring attack, giving the Leathernecks an early 9-5 lead at the first media timeout of the contest.
For the next five-plus minutes, up until the 10 minute mark of the first, Oakland would score 11 unanswered points, thanks in large part to three triples, two from Bader, and one from Bass. The run gave OU a 16-9 lead.
The Golden Grizzlies would build their lead up to as large as eight points, its largest lead of the game, 22-14, with 7:42 to play before break. The Leathernecks, however, would slowing climb back, and after Parks hit a jumper with time expiring the half, the game was tied 30-30.
The back-and-forth battle continued into the second half, as the two team's would play to a 36-36 tie five minutes into the period.
OU's lead grew to five points, 48-42, with 9:57 to play in the game. A long jumper from Link, followed by Houpt's third three of the game, cut the Leathernecks' deficit to one point, 48-47, with 8:14 to play in the game.
A Roberts-Burnett three, his second of the game, made it 52-52 with just over five minutes to play in the game.
Oakland quickly recaptured its lead and never let it go for the remainder of the game, eventually running out the clock with for a 67-60 win.
Western continues Summit League road action in a week, next Saturday (Feb. 2) at IUPUI.