Seattle — Before taking the court on Saturday, Oakland coach Greg Kampe received a text message from a friend that the next four days would determine if the Golden Grizzlies were a pretty good mid-major team or potentially something special.
With star guard Kay Felder, a special season might be possible for the Golden Grizzlies.
Felder scored a career-high 38 points, taking over the game late in the first half, Martez Walker added 18 in his season debut, and Oakland raced past Washington 97-83.
It was Oakland’s first road victory over a power conference opponent since it won at Tennessee in December 2010 and was the first in a two-game stretch that will go a long way in determining the national impression about the Golden Grizzlies.
First came beating Washington. Next up on the docket: No. 1 Michigan State on Tuesday night.
“It had been a few years and we needed another one of these, especially to get it this way” Kampe said.
Felder came in as the fifth leading scorer in the nation and put on a show in the first half that left Washington coach Lorenzo Romar impressed. Felder had 25 at halftime, including the final 14 points for the Golden Grizzlies who built a 55-35 lead at the break and never let the Huskies get closer than 10 in the second half.
“I know we have some good guards in our league, but I just don’t know if we’ll play against anybody else like that,” Washington coach Lorenzo Romar said.
No matter whom Washington used to try and guard Felder in the first half it didn’t work, especially late in the half. Felder scored 16 of the final 18 points. He did it a variety of ways — deep 3-pointers, breaking down defenders off the dribble and occasionally scoring in the lane.
Felder made 14 of 27 shots, added nine assists and six rebounds. Jalen Hayes had 16 points and 17 rebounds.
“The basket feels like an ocean or something. It’s so big and wide and everything you’re throwing up is going in. It just feels great,” Felder said.
Matisse Thybulle and Dejounte Murray led the Huskies with 16 points, but Washington saw its four-game win streak snapped. Washington attempted a season-high 37 3-pointers — making 11 — and was outrebounded 55-39, helping lead to 24 second-chance points for Oakland.
Oakland was bolstered by the season debut of Walker, a transfer from Texas who was eligible for the first time this season. Walker made 7 of 11 shots and was the perfect complement for Felder. Walker was also responsible for stopping Washington’s run early in the second half that trimmed the Golden Grizzlies lead to 10.
Marquese Chriss scored six straight for the Huskies and Noah Dickerson’s fastbreak dunk with 13:43 left pulled Washington within 65-55. Felder returned after a timeout and Oakland responded. Walker scored eight straight points set up largely by Felder and the lead was back to 18.
Washington never got closer than 10 again.
“You can talk about what Felder did and he put us in the position. The end of the first half we were tired and in foul trouble so I just spread the floor and let him play one-on-one and he was unbelievable. But we see that every day. We know how good he is,” Kampe said. “But in the second half they made their run and Kay was tired and Martez took over and got us those points.”
(At) Detroit 95, Central Florida 89: Chris Jenkins scored a career-high 26 points, Paris Bass added 23, and Detroit topped Central Florida. Jenkins was 8 of 11 from the floor, hit a pair of 3-pointers, and grabbed 10 rebounds. Anton Wilson scored 13 points and Josh McFolley had 12. The Titans (6-3) shot 51.7 percent as a team and made 12 of 25 3-point attempts.
Central Florida (5-4) was led by A.J. Davis with 23 points — a career high — and eight rebounds.
Detroit raced out to a 15-4 lead after consecutive 3-pointers by Wilson and Bass. UCF got the deficit to two on Williams’ trey with 4:32 in the half, but Detroit scored the next seven points and led 45-34 at intermission.
The Titans led by as many as 15 in the second half. UCF chipped away and trimmed it to four with 1:41 left, but never got over the hump.
More men's scores
Alma 113, Mary Hardin-Baylor 97
Anderson (Indiana) 85, Calvin 77
Aquinas 77, Madonna 69
Chicago 69, Albion 65
Grand Valley 51, Cedarville 48
Hillsdale 99, Lawrence Tech 57
Lake Superior State 93, Silver Lake 66
Northern Michigan 78, Grace Bible 59
Saginaw Valley 81, Lake Erie 69
Siena Heights 101, Great Lakes Christian 69
Trinity 81, Kalamazoo 64
Wisconsin-Oshkosh 70, Adrian 61
Wisconsin-Parkside 70, Michigan Tech 64
(At) Michigan 97, Miami (Ohio) 55: Katelynn Flaherty scored 25 while Nicole Munger added 19 and Boogie Brozoski 10 as the Wolverines (8-2) shot 59 percent (38-of-65) from the field, including 10-of-20 on 3-pointers. Baleigh Reid scored 19 to lead Miami (5-4).
Oakland 74, (at) Chicago State 51: Taylor Jones had a game-high 19 points to pace the Golden Grizzlies (6-4). Olivia Nash scored 16 and Taylor Gleason added 11 for Oakland. Sh'Toya Sanders had 14 points for Chicago State (2-9).
Western Michigan 71, Gardner-Webb 44: Jessica Jessing and Teagan Reeves each had 15 points while Breanna Mobley and Deborah Meeks had 10 apiece to lead Western (7-2) in the Puerto Rico Classic. Olivia Parker had 12 points for Gardner-Webb (6-3).
More women's scores
Adrian 67, Anderson (Indiana) 58
Albion 88, Michigan-Dearborn 47
Alma 76, Lawrence Tech 30
Bellarmine 76, Ferris State 52
Hope 95, Lake Forest 57
Saginaw Valley 84, Lake Erie 54
Southern Indiana 63, Northern Michigan 43
Spring Arbor 60, Rochester 44
Thomas More 85, Calvin 69