The Ferris State University women's basketball squad got off to a slow start and never could recover in a 79-70 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) road setback at Northwood on Thursday (Feb. 26) evening in Midland, Mich.
The Timberwolves jumped out to an early 17-3 edge and led 42-29 at halftime. NU increased its lead to 22 points with 15 minutes to play and the Bulldogs could never get closer than nine points the rest of the way.
NU won its 20th game of the year in improving to 20-6 overall this campaign and 15-6 in GLIAC play. FSU dropped to 11-14 overall and 9-12 in conference action.
Despite the loss, FSU has unofficially clinched a GLIAC Postseason Tournament berth following Thursday night's results. The Bulldogs would finish ahead of at least one team in any tiebreaker situation as four teams are currently battling for the final three spots with one game left in the regular-season.
In Thursday's setback to Northwood, the Bulldogs turned the ball over 21 times. FSU finished shooting 50% for the game and was eight-of-19 (42.1%) at the three-point line along with making 10-of-15 (66.7%) free throws.
Three Bulldog players reached double-figure scoring. FSU was led by freshman guard Kelsey DeNoyelles, who tallied a team-best 12 points. Both sophomore forward Amy Joostberns and sophomore guard Chelsea Simonetti totaled 10 points apiece.
The Timberwolves, though, connected on 28-of-60 (46.7%) field goal tries and were 17-of-24 (70.8%) at the free throw stripe. They made six-of-16 (37.5%) three-point attempts and had only 11 turnovers.
NU also had three-players in double-digits led by Megan Starnes' game-best 19 points and 10 rebounds. Jodi Ostergren chipped in 16 points and Pam Wilson contributed 13 points.
Ferris outrebounded NU 36-28 for the game and totaled 18 assists compared to only 14 for Northwood.
Ferris played Thursday's game without the services of head coach Tracey Dorow, who gave birth to her first child this past Monday (Feb. 23). Assistant coach Crystal Harris directed the Bulldogs in Dorow's absence with assistance from volunteer coaches Rick Bloodworth and Mark DeNoyelles.
The Bulldogs will wrap up GLIAC regular-season play on Saturday, Feb. 28, at Wayne State. Tipoff is set for 1 p.m. (EST) inside WSU's Matthaei Complex at Detroit, Mich.
FSU would clinch the tournament's number six seed with a win on Saturday. Quarterfinal-round games in the GLIAC Tournament will be held at the top four seeds on Tuesday, March 3, with the top remaining seed after those games selected to host the semifinals/finals on Friday and Saturday, March 6-7.
The official tournament pairings will be announced by the league office following the conclusion of Saturday's results.