The Ferris State University women’s basketball squad completed a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) weekend home sweep, but it took an extra period as the Bulldogs registered a 57-50 overtime triumph over Northern Michigan on Saturday (Feb. 14) afternoon at FSU’s Jim Wink Arena in Big Rapids, Mich.
The Wildcats took a 27-20 halftime lead in the Valentine’s Day game and led by four points with two minutes to play before FSU knotted the game up at the end of regulation with baskets by senior forward Ashley Fleming and senior guard Teghan Thelen in the final 1:43 of the second half.
In overtime, the Bulldogs scored 10 of the 13 points and made three-of-four (75%) field goal tries to improve to 9-13 overall and 7-11 in the GLIAC standings. The win was FSU’s fifth in its last eight contests this season.
NMU led by as many as 12 points in the game with 18:54 to play, but Ferris shot 45.5% (10-22) in the second half of the game and held the Wildcats to a 28.6% (8-28) figure in the same period.
Both Fleming and Thelen reached double-figure scoring with 13 points apiece although neither player found double-digits until the extra session. Fleming added a game-high 11 boards in a double-double effort, which was her second in as many games following 15 points and 13 boards in Thursday’s (Feb. 12) 67-62 league home upset over nationally 12th-ranked Michigan Tech.
Although Ferris shot only 37.7% (20-53) for the day, the Bulldogs did make five-of-10 (50%) three-pointers and were 12-of-15 (80%) at the charity stripe. FSU also limited the Wildcats to only 30% (18-60) shooting as NMU was four-of-23 (17.4%) beyond the three-point arc to go with a 10-of-13 (76.9%) performance at the stripe.
Two Wildcat players also reached double-figures as Kelsey Deacon tallied 16 points and Angie Leckson netted 13 points. Twelve of Deacon’s 16 points came in the initial half, including her team’s first 10 points of the game.
The Bulldogs recorded a 45-36 edge in rebounds behind Fleming’s team-high figure. Ferris turned the ball over 23 times with NMU committing 16 miscues. The Wildcats had two turnovers in the final two minutes of regulation.
Ferris finished with 15 assists as four players dished out three assists or more in the game. The Bulldogs also had seven steals and three blocked shots compared to NMU’s 10 steals and four blocks in the game.
The loss dropped the Wildcats to 12-11 overall and 7-11 in the GLIAC as both teams are now involved in a three-way tie along with Findlay for seventh place in the league standings. The top eight teams at the end of the regular-season will advance to the GLIAC Postseason Tournament. Each team has four league games left this year.
Ferris State will play its final two regular-season home contests at Wink Arena next week as the Bulldogs host Saginaw Valley State on Thursday, Feb. 19, with the league tipoff and “Pink Wave Night” encounter set for 6 p.m. (EST). FSU then takes on Lake Superior State in its annual “Senior Day” contest on Saturday, Feb. 21, starting at 1 p.m. (EST) in Big Rapids.