Muntz Buzzer Beater Lifts Bulldogs To Win

The Bulldog women celebrate after the buzzer-beating win (Photo by Ed Hyde)
The Bulldog women celebrate after the buzzer-beating win (Photo by Ed Hyde)

Big Rapids, Mich. - A three-pointer at the buzzer from freshman guard Kylie Muntz lifted the Ferris State University women's basketball team to a thrilling 61-60 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) triumph over Saginaw Valley State during the "Basketball Bonanza" on Saturday (Jan. 9) at FSU's Jim Wink Arena in Big Rapids, Mich.

The Bulldogs fought back from a six-point deficit with 55 seconds left in the game and took possession of the ball with only seven seconds left in the contest after a pair of SVSU missed shots.  FSU drove the length of the floor after a timeout before sophomore guard Kelsey DeNoyelles found Muntz wide open behind the three-point arc on the right-side of the floor for the game winner as time expired.

Ferris sophomore guard Tricia Principe hit four free throws in the final 49 seconds and the Cardinals missed a free throw and two shots in the final minute of the game during the Bulldogs' rally.

FSU took an early 11-point lead with 7:53 to play in the opening half before Saginaw Valley State came back to hold a 29-27 halftime edge.  The Cardinals built their lead to as many as 13 points with 10 minutes remaining, but Ferris outscored the visitors 24-10 after that to account for the difference.

Principe had the most productive game of her collegiate career as she tallied a game-high 21 points, including a 10-of-10 showing from the stripe to go with six rebounds, four steals and two assists in keying the Bulldog win.  She was the lone Bulldog player to reach double-digits.

FSU junior forward Tiara Adams contributed seven points and eight rebounds while the DeNoyelles also scored seven points and dropped three assists.  The freshman combination of Muntz and post players Katy Fox along with Leah Kebler all tallied six points apiece.

Ferris shot only 33.3% (20-60) for the game and made only nine-of-32 (28.1%) attempts in the final half.  The Bulldogs, however, also limited the Cardinals to 35.2% (19-54) shooting.  FSU was five-of-16 (31.3%) beyond the arc compared to SVSU's five-of-14 (35.7%) long-range effort.  The Bulldogs sank 16-of-18 (88.9%) free throws overall with the Cardinals converting 17-of-26 (65.4%) tries.

The Bulldogs' triumph was aided by forcing 28 SVSU turnovers, helping offset a 46-32 Cardinal advantage on the boards.   Ferris turned the ball over 22 times, but held an 11-9 edge in second chance points.

SVSU was paced by Brittany Burkhardt's team-high 14 points and Aysha Boston netted 13 points.  Grace Herzog chipped in with nine points, 11 rebounds and six blocked shots.

With the win, the Bulldogs improved to 4-8 overall and 3-4 in league play while the Cardinals fell to 4-8 overall and 2-5 in GLIAC action.

Ferris State won't have much time to rest as the Bulldogs visit archrival Grand Valley State on Monday (Jan. 11) evening for a 6 p.m. (EST) league encounter inside the GVSU Fieldhouse Arena at Allendale, Mich.

Bulldog Bites: The win was FSU's second consecutive victory with both coming by a single point ........ FSU defeated SVSU for the 18th time in the last 22 meetings ....... Principe's 21 points was a personal career-high ....... Ferris head coach Tracey Dorow improved to 19-4 overall in her head coaching career versus the Cardinals ...... The "Basketball Bonanza" featured four games with two prep and two college contests involving Ferris, SVSU, Chippewa Hills High School and Big Rapids High School ..... The lead changed hands six times in the game.