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Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University women's basketball program can now boast of having the nation's top free throw shooter as sophomore guard Tricia Principe (Kalamazoo/Mattawan) concluded the 2009-10 season as NCAA Division II's national statistical champion in free throw percentage.
The 5-9 Principe sank 86 of 93 free throw attempts in 27 games this past season while shooting a nation-high 92.5% from the charity stripe. She finished more than a percentage point better than second-place finisher Maurika Hickman of Concorida-St. Paul (91.2%).
The final NCAA-II National Statistics were published Tuesday (March 30) following the conclusion of the NCAA Division II Elite Eight this past weekend in St. Joseph, Mo. All regular-season and postseason statistics are included in the final total.
The Bulldog standout concluded the year as one of only two Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) players found among the nation's top 20 free throw percentage leaders along with Michigan Tech's Katie Wysocky, who finished 20th (85.2%) in the listing.
Principe earlier closed regular-season play as the leader in free throw percentage after holding the nation's top spot after both of the final two weeks of regular-season competition. She held the number one spot in the free throw percentage listing three times in the final five weeks of the regular-season along with being listed second twice.
A 2009-10 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District IV Third Team honoree, Principe ranked as the Bulldogs' leading scorer (11.6 ppg.) this season and was the squad's second-best rebounder (5.2 rpg.).
Principe made a school-record 44 consecutive free throws this campaign and also led the GLIAC in free throw percentage.
She compiled 18 double-figure scoring performance this season, including 11 outings with 10 or more points in her last 16 games. Twice she totaled 20 points or more with a personal career-high of 23 points in a road win at Tiffin (Jan. 14).
Principe’s .925 free throw percentage this year represented the best single-season effort in school history. Meanwhile, her 44 consecutive made free throws from Dec. 5 to Jan. 30 also established a new school record. Along with her school-record streak of 44 make’s, Principe also had another streak of 21 in a row this campaign.
Additionally, Principe's current .912 (93-102) career free throw percentage ranks first on the Bulldogs' all-time chart to date.
The Ferris State women's basketball team concluded the 2009-10 season with an 8-19 overall record. The Bulldogs were 7-15 in GLIAC action and are eligible to return their entire roster intact next season after winning their final two regular-season contests.