FEATURE: Ferris State Men's Basketball Looks To Stay Unbeaten In Five-Game Road Stretch

DeShaun Thrower

By Danny Collins

Big Rapids, Mich. - The nationally fifth-ranked Ferris State University men's basketball team entered a five-game road stretch that started with a 76-65 (Dec. 7) victory on Thursday (Dec. 7) night over the Northwood Timberwolves in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play at Riepema Arena in Midland.

Senior forward Noah King led the Bulldogs with a game-high 18 points and two clutch three-point shots in the closing minutes of the contest to seal the win. Senior guard Drew Cushingberry added 15 points on the night and junior center Zach Hankins posted 10 points.

This contest against the Timberwolves was the first of five-straight away games for the Bulldogs in the month of December and as Thursday night proved, the slate only figures to get harder.

The away stretch also consists of games at Saginaw Valley State (Dec. 9), Lake Superior State (Dec. 16), again Lewis (Ill.) at Godwin Heights High School (Dec. 18) and finally at Wisconsin- Parkside (Dec. 30).

The matchup against the Wisconsin-Parkside Rangers will be the first matchup between the Bulldogs and Rangers, who will begin play in the GLIAC next season.

Last season, in the team's long away stretch of games towards the end of December and into January, the Bulldogs were able to post a 4-0 mark. The Bulldogs also outscored their opponents 411-282 during the stretch.

The stretch featured wins on the road against Ohio Valley, Salem International, Lake Erie and Lake Superior State. 

Ferris State is currently 11-0 on the season overall and 3-0 in GLIAC play. The team is also currently ranked #1 in the GLIAC standings. The Bulldogs also are 8-0 on their home court at Wink Arena.

With the win Thursday night against Northwood, the Bulldogs matched the 1972-73 Bulldog squad for the best season-opening start in school history at 11-0.

Thursday night's win came in FSU's first true road contest of the campaign. Last season, the Bulldogs were 13-1 on the road.

The Bulldogs are averaging 84.2 points per game, which is the best in the GLIAC. The team is also shooting 49.9% from the field, which is second in the conference. The Bulldogs are also averaging 7.1 three-point field goals per game.

The team is led in scoring by senior guard Drew Cushingberry with 15.9 points per game. Senior forward Noah King is second with 13.0 points per game and junior center Zach Hankins is third at 12.3 points per game.

Hankins is third in the conference with 8.4 rebounds per game and third in the conference in field goal percentage while shooting 58.9% from the floor. Hankins also leads the conference with 92 rebounds and with 3.2 blocks per game.  

The Bulldogs will next be in action on the road against the Saginaw Valley State Cardinals on Saturday (Dec. 9) starting at 6 p.m. (ET) in a conference match up in University Center.