Foul shooting, Kangas’ 3s lead Oakland to 80-66 win

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TULSA, Okla. (AP)—Erik Kangas hit six 3-pointers and scored 26 points, and Oakland took advantage of a Summit League tournament record 55 free throw attempts to beat Western Illinois 80-66 Sunday night and advance to the semifinals.

Kangas hit five 3-pointers in the second half, including two on back-to-back possessions after Western Illinois (12-18) had cut an 18-point deficit to down to 51-45.

Kangas also went 8-for-8 from the foul line to lead the third-seeded Golden Grizzlies (17-13), who made 35 of their 55 free throws.

Derick Nelson added 17 points and nine rebounds, Johnathon Jones scored 10 of his 14 points from the free-throw line and Dan Waterstradt had 10 points for Oakland.

The Golden Grizzlies face second-seeded IUPUI in the semifinals on Monday night.

James Washington scored 20 points and David DuBois added 18 points and eight rebounds for the sixth-seeded Leathernecks, who were called for 33 fouls. Two Western Illinois players fouled out and five others had four fouls.

Oakland, which also broke a school record for free throws attempted, never trailed.

Kangas hit a 3-pointer to start a 15-2 run that pushed Oakland to a 21-8 lead, and the margin was 14 at halftime.

The Golden Grizzlies went ahead 41-23 on a basket by Jones in the opening minute of the second half, but Western Illinois got back in the game with a 17-6 surge before Kangas heated up.

Kangas, the league’s leading 3-point shooter, started out 1-for-7 from behind the arc before making five of his final six 3-point shots.

Chicago State had the previous record for free throw attempts at the 25-year-old tournament with 53 in a game against Valparaiso in 2005.

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Top Performers

 Top Performers
 Western Ill.
James Washington James Washington
9-14,  20 Pts
1 Rebs, 2 Assists
 Oakland
Erik Kangas Erik Kangas
6-14,  26 Pts
4 Rebs, 0 Assists

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Rebounds
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Sunday, Mar 9