With offense strong, Golden Grizzlies burn Green Bay


Oakland men’s basketball team listens to coach Greg Kampe during a timeout at the first home game against EMU. The Golden Grizzlies defeated Green Bay Phoenix 111-95 on Saturday, Jan. 23 at the Resch Center in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Sam Schlenner

Fans started leaving the Resch Center with two minutes left. They had good reason: The Golden Grizzlies (12-8, 4-3 HL) turned up royally in the second half to defeat the host Green Bay Phoenix (12-8, 4-3 HL) 111-95 in men’s basketball Saturday afternoon.

Max Hooper stoked the Oakland onslaught with a career-high nine 3-pointers—tied for the fourth-largest downtown performance in Division I this year—which made up all of his 27 points. Kay Felder got his ninth double double of the season and scored a team-leading 29 points, maintaining his season-long streak of at least 20 points per game. He lent a hand with 14 assists, tying his career high.

Jalen Hayes joined the action with 24 points and 6 rebounds. The Golden Grizzlies bench scored 53 points to Green Bay’s 11.

Oakland opened up the second half with a 13-2 run after trailing 50-49 at the midpoint. They’d managed a 14-3 run early in the first half.

“That’s the best offense we’ve played in a month,” Oakland head coach Greg Kampe said in a post-game interview with Neal Ruhl on WDFN-AM 1130.

The Golden Grizzlies did this following a 17-point upset at home to Northern Kentucky on Tuesday night. Oakland, though, hardly seemed rattled at Green Bay. Nor could they have been timid to pull off the pounding they gave Green Bay on their home court, a tough feat given the Phoenix was 6-1 overall (and undefeated in Horizon League play) at the Resch Center before Saturday’s shootout.

“Green Bay plays that 40 Minutes of Hell or whatever they call it,” Kampe said in the postgame GrizzVision interview with Neal Ruhl. “We like that.”

The blows weren’t totally one-sided. The Phoenix showed up to bat, scoring 11 more points than their season average.

Five on Green Bay shot in double digits. Sophomore Khalil Small managed an efficient 7 for 12 on field goals. Senior Carrington Love made six free throws and scored 21 points.

But the Phoenix’s admittedly impressive offensive performance of the first half didn’t continue in the second, even with the bonus Oakland gave them not five minutes after play resumed. After the midpoint, Green Bay’s 3-point percentage cut in more than half, with their free-throw percentage dropping from perfect to two-thirds.

Milwaukee is next. Oakland confronts the Panthers on Monday, January 25 at 9 p.m. ET. Catch the game on ESPN3 streaming or WDFN-AM 1130.

After Kampe declared Oakland’s win the team’s best offensive performance in a month in the postgame interview with Ruhl, he talked about what the Golden Grizzlies had needed to do. He said “excuse me” and switched to the present tense. They’ve got a game on Monday.