#4 Ferris State Wins National TV Showdown With Strong Defensive Performance

#4 Ferris State Wins National TV Showdown With Strong Defensive Performance

Postgame Press Conference 
Game Highlights 

Big Rapids, Mich. - The nationally fourth-ranked Ferris State University football team kept its perfect season intact with a strong defensive performance in a nationally-televised game on Saturday (Oct. 24) as the Bulldogs beat 17th-ranked Michigan Tech 24-14 in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) showdown at FSU's Top Taggart Field.

The Bulldogs limited the Huskies to only 59 total offensive yards in the second half and held MTU to 273 yards overall in the game shown live across the country by the American Sports Network. FSU improved to 7-0 overall and in the GLIAC with the triumph while Michigan Tech dropped to 5-2 overall and in league play.

Ferris State overcame four offensive turnovers and a pair of key drives that stalled inside the Michigan Tech redzone in the second half by shutting down the Huskies for most of the day. The win increased the Bulldogs' regular-season winning streak to 22-straight games dating back to 2013.

FSU jumped out to an early advantage as junior cornerback Jaleel Canty scored on a 71-yard punt return less than three minutes into the opening quarter. 

The Bulldogs later pushed their lead to 10-0 in the first frame by driving 56 yards in 11 plays before junior kicker Nate Iveson connected on a 28-yard field goal with 4:31 left in the period.
Michigan Tech cut the margin to three points in the final minute of the first quarter when Alex Sherbinow plowed in from a yard out to finish a seven-play, 60-yard MTU scoring drive.

However, Ferris State again pushed its advantage to 10 points when senior quarterback Jason Vander Laan hit senior wideout Jake Lampman in stride on a 70-yard scoring strike with 9:14 left in the first half. That made it a 17-7 game in the Bulldogs' favor.

Again, though, the Huskies pulled back within a score as Sherbinow scored his second touchdown of the afternoon on another one yard run with only 4:23 left in the first half to finish off a short five-play, 29-yard drive setup by a Bulldog turnover. The 17-14 score stood to halftime as FSU entered the locker room with a three-point lead.

The Bulldogs pushed the margin back to 10 points at 24-14 early in the third quarter when Vander Laan found paydirt from 14-yards out. His lone score of the day finished off a Bulldog scoring drive covering 57 yards in 10 plays that ended with 11:14 to play in the third.

From there, though, it was a defensive contest as neither team was able to reach the endzone the rest of the way. Ferris State twice drove inside the MTU five-yard line in the final half, but could not convert on a pair of key fourth down plays.

Senior defensive lineman Justin Zimmer had a monster day for the Bulldogs with a game and personal career-high 19 tackles, which included seven solo hits and 12 assisted stops. He also tallied six tackles for loss resulting in minus 22 yards along with 2.5 sacks for negative 15 yards. In addition, he finished with five quarterback hurries and two pass breakups.

Along with Zimmer, FSU's Anthony Darkangelo finished with 10 stops on the defensive side. In addition, FSU came up with a pair of interceptions as both Troy Smith and Canty picked off a Michigan Tech pass in the contest.

Offensively, Ferris State finished with 361 yards of total offense, which included 182 on the ground and 179 in the air. Vander Laan completed 17-of-28 throws with one TD while running for a game-high 147 yards on 30 carries along with a score.

Vander Laan and Lampman hooked up five times for 98 yards with senior slot Antonio Agurs making four grabs for 27 yards overall. 

Michigan Tech was led by quarterback Brandon Cowie, who completed seven of 19 passes for 88 yards. He also ran for a team-high 70 yards on 17 attempts. The Bulldog defense limited MTU to a six-of-20 showing on third down conversions.

Ferris State will hit the road for the next week weeks starting with a trip to Lake Erie to face the Storm on Saturday, Oct. 31, in Painesville, Ohio. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. (ET).