PREVIEW: Women's Basketball Faces Rival GVSU On Saturday
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* The Week Ahead: The Ferris State women's basketball team returns home for its lone outing this week as the Bulldogs host archrival Grand Valley State on Saturday, Feb. 2, at Jim Wink Arena. Tipoff for the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) contest is set for 3 p.m. (ET). Fans are encouraged to wear red to support the Bulldogs.
* Home Ticket Info: Ferris State home basketball tickets can be purchased in advance thru the FSU Athletics Ticket Office by calling (231) 591-2888 or visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com for more information. They can also be bought online via StarTickets.com. Adult general admission tickets are $7 or the cost is $5 for FSU faculty/staff, seniors ages 65 and up or students age 3 thru 12th grade. FSU students are admitted free with a valid student ID card.
* Media Coverage: Saturday's game will be broadcast locally by Sunny 97.3 FM and the Bulldog Sports Network starting with the Meijer Pregame Show a half-hour prior to tipoff. Rob Bentley and Sandy Gholston will call the action. A live audio broadcast will be accessible online in addition to live internet statistics and a live pay-per-view video webcast. For a full listing of links, please visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com.
* Follow On Twitter/Facebook: In addition to internet coverage, Bulldog fans can also follow all games this season via Twitter and Facebook with updates. Please visit www.facebook.com/FerrisWBasketball or www.twitter.com/FerrisWBBALL to follow the periodic posts and tweet-by-tweet coverage with scoring updates.
* Last Weekend: Ferris State suffered a pair of close setbacks in GLIAC North Division action last weekend. FSU dropped a 81-68 decision to Wayne State on Thursday (Jan. 24) night at Jim Wink Arena. Then, on Saturday (Jan. 26), the Bulldogs fell 73-70 to Saginaw Valley State in overtime at University Center, Mich. Junior guard Sarah DeShone had 24 points against Wayne State while senior guard Kylie Muntz added 21 points. On Saturday, Muntz and junior forward Ashley Rando both netted 15 points each while DeShone contributed 12 in the overtime setback against the Cardinals. The Bulldogs led SVSU by six points with only two minutes left in regulation before the Cardinals rallied. DeShone's potential game-tying basket in the final seconds of OT just rimmed out as the Bulldogs fell short on the road.
* GLIAC North Race: Ferris State and Grand Valley State are tied with identical 9-5 records in the GLIAC North heading into Saturday's showdown. Michigan Tech is first in the division (11-3) with Wayne State second (10-3). The Bulldogs have won eight of their last 12 games overall and hold a current 5-2 mark at home this season.
* The Records: Ferris State (10-7, 9-5 GLIAC) finished the 2011-12 women's basketball season with a 23-7 overall record, which matched the school record set previously in 2006-07 for most wins in a campaign. Last year marked the 15th time in the last 16 seasons the Bulldogs have registered double-digit wins in a campaign. FSU also reached the semifinals at the NCAA Division II Midwest Regional Tournament last year.
Grand Valley State (13-5, 9-5 GLIAC) is currently tied with FSU in the GLIAC North and both teams trail divisional leader Michigan Tech by only two games. The Lakers are coming off a 72-59 league road loss at Wayne State last Saturday (Jan. 26) and have dropped two of their last three games to date.
* The Coaches: Ferris State – Colleen Lamoreaux-Tate (Aquinas), 1st season, 10-7 (.588) - (0-0 vs. GVSU). A veteran coach with 26 years of experience on the sidelines and regarded as one of the state's top prep coaches prior to her FSU arrival, Lamoreaux-Tate most recently spent the last seven years as the varsity girls basketball coach at Grand Rapids Catholic Central High School where she guided the Cougars to a 167-19 cumulative record.
Grand Valley State – Janel Burgess (Iowa State, 1998), 6th year at GVSU. Burgess came to GVSU after three years as an assistant at Missouri State, four years at Michigan State and one year at Maine. Burgess led the Lakers to a 16-12 mark her first season followed by a 20-
10 record and a berth in the NCAA-II Tourney in 2008-09.
* GLIAC North Run: The Bulldogs have eight conference regular-season games remaining this campaign. Overall, the Bulldogs have currently won 26 of their last 32 conference regular-season games dating back to the start of the 2011-12 season. FSU posted a first-place 17-2 mark in league play a year ago en route to claiming the North Division crown and currently has a 9-5 mark to date this season.
* Rivalry Weekend In Big Rapids: Saturday's game is part of "Rivalry Weekend" in Big Rapids as the Bulldog men's ice hockey team will also host nationally sixth-ranked rival Western Michigan in CCHA play on both Friday and Saturday nights at 7:05 p.m. (ET). The two national powers both rank among the top four in the league and only five points seperate first-place WMU from the Bulldogs with six points possible this weekend.
* Series History vs. GVSU: GVSU holds a 53-27 advantage heading into Saturday's 81st encounter. The Lakers have claimed 11 of the last 20 series' matchups, but fell to FSU twice last season as the Bulldogs recorded a 58-50 win at Wink Arena (1/28/12) along with a 46-44 regular-season finale triumph in Allendale (2/25/12). The two teams split two games in 2010-11 with GVSU posting a 69-62 win over FSU (1/29/11) in the "131 Showdown" at Van Andel Arena prior to Ferris State's exciting 65-62 triumph in the regular-season finale (2/26/11) at Wink Arena. FSU has won six of the last 11 matchups overall.
* Ten More Wins: With 10 wins to date this season, the Bulldogs have now failed to win 10 games in a season only twice in the last 22 years. FSU had reached double-digit victories 13 consecutive seasons prior to 2009-10. The Bulldogs bounced back to win 13 games in 2010-11 before winning 23 a year ago.
* Returning All-American: Ferris State's Sarah DeShone earned Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Division II Honorable Mention All-America honors for her efforts on the hardwood last year. DeShone averaged 14.1 points and 4.6 assists per contest in 2011-12.
* Looking At Grand Valley State: Sixth-year head coach Janel Burgess' team is presently 13-5 overall and 9-5 in the GLIAC North, but is coming off a 72-59 league road setback at Wayne State last Saturday (Jan. 26). GVSU has dropped two of its last three outings overall this season. The Lakers have posted an 8-2 home record with a 4-3 road mark to date. Senior forward Briauna Taylor leads the Lakers in scoring at 16.1 points per game.
* Coming Up Next: Ferris State ventures to Michigan's Upper Peninsula for league road games at Michigan Tech (Feb. 7) and at Northern Michigan (Feb. 9).
* GLIAC Preseason Poll: Ferris State was picked to finish first in the 2012-13 GLIAC North Division Preseason Coaches Poll announced by the league office. Ashland claimed top honors in the South Division as both teams were chosen to repeat as divisional champions.
* Second GLIAC Crown: FSU finished with a 17-2 mark in GLIAC play last campaign and won the league's North Division Championship for only the second time in school history in addition to earning conference tournament runner-up honors.
* The Bulldog Roster: Ferris' 2012-13 roster includes two seniors, four juniors, five sophomores and three freshmen or redshirt freshmen. Nine of the 14 players are primarily frontcourt players while the remaining five are guards. Ten of the 14 players on the Bulldogs' roster hail from Michigan with three from Indiana and one from Ohio.
* New Head Coach: FSU Athletics Director Perk Weisenburger officially announced the appointment of Colleen Lamoreaux-Tate as the Bulldogs' new head coach on June 14. She became only the sixth head coach in the 38-year history of Bulldog women's basketball and replaced former head coach Tracey Dorow, who accepted the head coaching position at NCAA Division I Valparaiso University in April. In her seven seasons at Grand Rapids Catholic Central, she recorded 23 wins or more six consecutive years, including back-to-back 27-1 marks in 2008-09 and 2009-10. Her 2009-10 team claimed the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) Class B State Championship.
* Looking Back To Last Year: Ferris State finished the 2011-12 season with a 23-7 overall record, which matched the school record set previously in 2006-07 for most wins in a campaign. The Bulldogs also advanced to the NCAA Division II Midwest Regional semifinals and claimed the schools second-ever GLIAC North Division Championship.
* New Assistant Coach: FSU landed another highly-successful coach from the Grand Rapids area when Charlette Muller was appointed to the assistant coaching position. Muller most recently spent the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons as the varsity head coach at Grand Rapids Christian High School where she led the Eagles to back-to-back regional finals appearances and a 44-5 (.900) overall record. Muller won 90 percent of her games as a varsity head coach and was the 2010 Associated Press Class A State Coach of the Year.
* Season Of Firsts: The women's basketball team was one of three FSU teams to win league championships last winter along with men's basketball and the Bulldog Hockey team, which claimed the CCHA Regular-Season crown and reached the national championship game at the 2012 NCAA Frozen Four.
* $10,000 Shootout: This season, one lucky Bulldog fan will have a chance to win $10,000 at every conference home game as part of the Lake Osceola State Bank $10,000 Shootout. One contestant will be picked at random for a chance to make a layup, free throw, three-pointer and half-court shot in 25 seconds.
* Key Win Mark: Ferris State's 23 wins a year ago matched its 23-9 mark while advancing to the NCAA-II Sweet Sixteen in 2006-07 for the most in school history. Additionally, the Bulldogs' 17 league regular-season victories were the program's most in school history and topped the 16 wins set in 1999-00.
* Statistical Notes: Sophomore Sarah DeShone is the GLIAC's second-leading scorer to date at 18.5 points per game along with 10th in assists (3.1 apg.). DeShone notched her 800th career point at Northwood (Jan. 17) ..... Ashley Rando ranks third in the GLIAC in steals to date (2.5 pg.). She notched her 150th career rebound against Michigan Tech (Jan. 10) ...... DeShone presently ranks 22nd nationally in scoring heading into the week.
* Bulldog Notes: Ferris State made its fifth-ever NCAA Tournament appearance a season ago. The Bulldogs eached the NCAA-II Sweet Sixteen and the regional final in 2006-07 at Romeoville, Ill. ....... Sophomore Kara Hess (Grand Rapids/Grandville) has played in 14 games to date this year for the Bulldogs and reached double-figures four times. She was a member of the FSU volleyball team this fall and helped the Bulldogs to the NCAA-II Midwest Regional Semifinals before joining the basketball team for the first time.
* Bulldog Tradition: The Ferris State women's basketball program, which starts its 38th season of varsity competition, has compiled a 493-492 (.501) all-time mark. The Bulldogs won their first previous GLIAC crown, advanced to their first NCAA-II Regional Tournament and recorded the nation's highest grade point average in 1999-2000. FSU, which claimed GLIAC Tourney runner-up honors for the third time last year, has posted 10 wins or more in 14 of the last 15 seasons.
* All-GLIAC Honorees: Ferris State was well-represented on the All-GLIAC teams announced last season in conjunction with the postseason banquet at the league's final four. Sarah DeShone was one of 10 first-team honorees while both forward/center Christina Branch and guard Tricia Principe were second-team picks. Branch also claimed GLIAC All-Defensive Team recognition.
* Reigning GLIAC Champs: The Ferris State women's basketball program began a new era this seaosn under first-year head coach Colleen Lamoreaux-Tate by returning eight players from a squad that advanced to the second round of the NCAA Division II Midwest Regional Tournament and also won the GLIAC North Division last season.
* Preseason All-GLIAC: A pair of Bulldog women's players were named to the 2012-13 All-GLIAC North Division Preseason First Team in junior guard Sarah DeShone and sophomore forward Christina Branch. FSU had two of the five players chosen to the preseason All-North team. Branch was injured during the preseason and is sitting out this year for the Bulldogs.