MACOMB, Ill. - Western Illinois weathered Oakland's second half run, and pulled away during the final five minutes of regulation on its way to a 73-63 Summit League victory Thursday evening (Dec. 27).
After they built their lead up to 10 points in the first half, the Leathernecks allowed Oakland to claw back and eventually take the lead early in the second half.
The two teams would go back and forth until they found themselves tied 55-55 with 5:04 to play in regulation. The Leathernecks would take over from there, pulling away for the win.
The Leathernecks improve to 9-3 overall and 3-0 in conference play after the win, while the Golden Grizzlies fall to 5-9 overall and 0-1 in league play. The last time Western started a season 9-3 was the 1986-87 season.
Western's win snapped 11-game losing streak to Oakland in Macomb, and marked the Leathernecks' sixth straight victory. The last time Western earned six straight wins was in the 1998-99 season.
Terell Parks led all scorers with 19 points in the game, and pulled down eight rebounds. He also had three blocks, two steals and two assists. Parks has pulled seven or more rebounds down in every game this season.
Adam Link (16), Don McAvoy III (13) and Remy Roberts-Burnett (10) all added 10 or more points in the game as well. Link knocked down 10 of his 15 free throw attempts, the most a Leatherneck has made in a game this season.
The Leathernecks shot a season-best 62.5% from the field, while Oakland shot 41.8% from the floor. Western had seven blocks to Oaklands none.
Oakland won the turnover battle, 13-10, and had more steals, 10-4.
The Golden Grizzlies were led by Ryan Bass who tallied 18 points off of 7-of-10 shooting.
Western continues league action at home Saturday when its host Fort Wayne at 7 p.m. inside Western Hall.