Bulldogs Fall To Lakers In West Michigan Rivalry Game

Bulldogs Fall To Lakers In West Michigan Rivalry Game

Big Rapids, Mich. - Despite shooting over 50% for the game, the Ferris State University women's basketball team could not beat archrival Grand Valley State as the Lakers came away with a 83-73 triumph over the Bulldogs in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) action at FSU's Jim Wink Arena.

The Bulldogs shot 52.9% for the afternoon, including a 63% clip in the opening half, but turned the ball over 25 times and gave up 14 offensive rebounds in falling to 10-8 overall and 9-6 in the divisional standings.

After the Bulldogs scored six of the game's first eight points, the Lakers responded with a big run to build a 15-point edge with nine minutes remaining in the first half.  However, in a game of runs, the Bulldogs trimmed the margin back to 48-43 at the break.

GVSU quickly pushed its advantage back to double-digits early in the second stanza before FSU cut the margin to seven points with 14:30 remaining. Another Laker run pushed the edge to 18 points with 7:20 to go and the Bulldogs could not get within nine points the rest of the way.

The win lifted the Lakers to 14-5 overall and 10-5 in conference action after they came in tied with the Bulldogs for third place in the GLIAC North Division standings.

Junior guard Sarah DeShone paced the Bulldogs with a game-high 20 points and added both five rebounds and five steals in the contest.  She was joined in double-figures by junior forward Ashley Rando with 15 points while both senior guard Kylie Muntz and junior center Felicia Standley added 10 points each.  All 15 of Rando's points came in the opening half of play.

Meanwhile, former Big Rapids native Kat LaPrairie tallied a team-high 19 points for the Lakers and hit five three-pointers in the contest.  She also had six rebounds and three assists in only 20 minutes of action.

The Lakers also received 13 points each from Dani Crandall and Alex Stelfox while Breanna Kellogg scored 11 points and made three three-pointers early to give the Lakers the lead in the opening half.  FSU held GVSU's leading scorer Briauna Taylor to only six points, including none in the first half.

Overall, the Bulldogs' 52.9% shooting figure included a seven-of-16 (43.8%) figure from beyond the three-point arc.  FSU made 12-of-16 (75%) free throws.

Grand Valley State connected on 45.6% of its field goals, but was 12-of-27 (44.4%) behind the three-point line and sank nine-of-12 (75%) tries at the charity stripe.

By forcing 25 Bulldog turnovers, the Lakers were able to come away with a 30-24 margin in points off misuces.  FSU did manage to outscore GVSU 12-9 in second chance production despite giving up 14 offensive boards. The Bulldogs posted a slim 31-30 edge on the glass and had seven rebounds on the offensive end.

Besides the four players who reached double-figures, the Bulldogs also received seven points off the bench from freshman guard April LaCross while redshirt freshman guard Katie Mavis contributed six points and three assists.

The Lakers did hold a decisive 37-12 margin in bench scoring with Kellie Watson adding eight points and Daina Grazulis contributing seven as reserves in addition to LaPrairie's performance.

The setback was FSU's third in a row after having recorded wins in eight of their previous 10 games prior to the stretch.

The loss snapped a three-game Bulldog winning streak in the West Michigan rivalry as the Lakers' last win had came 69-62 in the "131 Showdown" at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids two years ago (1/29/11).  FSU had won six of the last 11 meetings overall coming into the game.

Ferris State will travel to Michigan's Upper Peninsula next week as FSU squares off with Michigan Tech on Thursday, Feb. 7, in Houghton at 7:30 p.m. (ET).  The Bulldogs then visit Northern Michigan on Saturday, Feb. 9, for a league contest in Marquette.