Allendale, Mich. - The Ferris State University women's basketball team battled back late, but couldn't overcome a slow start as FSU dropped its regular-season finale to West Michigan rival Grand Valley State 70-59 on Saturday (March 2) night at the GVSU Fieldhouse Arena in Allendale.
With the loss, the Bulldogs will move on as the number six overall seed in the 2013 GLIAC Tournament and visit third-seeded Wayne State on Wednesday (March 6) night for a tournament quarterfinal round game at 8 p.m. (ET) in Detroit.
Juinor forward Ashley Rando paced the Bulldogs with 19 points while junior guard Sarah DeShone chipped in 14 points in the setback. Those were the lone two Bulldog players to reach double-digits in the outing.
Grand Valley State jumped in front early by scoring the game's first 10 points and pushed the margin to as many as 18 points in the opening frame before taking a 41-26 lead at the break.
In the second half, the advantage went to as many as 20 points for the Lakers with 16:04 to go, but the Bulldogs didn't quit. A 10-point Bulldog run in the final five minutes trimmed the margin to eight points with 2:13 to play, but the Lakers managed to hit some crucial free throws in the final minute to hold on for the win.
Senior Briauna Taylor paced Grand Valley State with a game-high 20 points while Breanna Kellogg added 14 points and Alex Stelfox contributed 12 points and 10 boards in a double-double showing.
Ferris State shot 40% for the night and was seven-of-22 (31.8%) from downtown along with four-of-eight (50%) at the line.
For the game, the Lakers hit 50% of their field goals and sank six-of-18 (33.3%) three's along with 14-of-19 (73.7%) free throws.
The Lakers held a 37-30 rebounding advantage and posted a 15-9 margin in second chance scoring despite the fact the Bulldogs pulled down 14 offensive boards to only 12 for GVSU.
The Bulldogs also managed to force 18 Laker turnovers with only 16 of their own, but still were outdistanced by a 25-20 count in points off turnovers as GVSU never trailed in the game.
The win lifted the Lakers to 19-7 overall and 15-7 in the GLIAC while FSU dropped to 13-12 overall and 12-10 in conference play.
Besides the two players who reached double figures in Rando and DeShone, FSU also received nine points from sophomore forward Kara Hess and seven points by redshirt freshman guard Katie Mavis. Rando added foru steals while three different Bulldog players totaled three assists each.
Ferris State and Wayne State will meet for the third time this season in the quarterfinals with the Bulldogs looking for their first win over the GLIAC North Division champions this season. The highest remaining seed after Wednesday's quarterfinals will host the GLIAC Semifinals and Championship on Saturday and Sunday, March 9-10.
Stay tuned to FerrisStateBulldogs.com for more information on the league tournament.