Big Rapids, Mich.- The Ferris State University women's basketball squad came up on the short end of a 64-58 decision against Saginaw Valley State on Saturday (Feb. 21) in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) play inside Jim Wink Arena as the Bulldogs saw their two-game win streak snapped by the Cardinals.
Following the loss, the Bulldogs are now 11-13 overall and 9-12 in GLIAC play on the year. Meanwhile, the Cardinals moved to 8-19 overall and 3-18 in conference action after avenging a decisive 77-48 Bulldog victory in the first matchup of the season between the two teams on Jan. 31 in University Center.
Despite a slow start, the Bulldogs managed to recover behind the hot hand of sophomore guard Ally Christman to take a 28-26 lead into the half over the visiting Cardinals. Christman finished the contest with a game-high 18 points.
FSU, though, fell behind 48-43 after SVSU guard Briana Graham capitalized on a Bulldog turnover with a fast break layup in the second half. On the next Bulldog possession, Ferris State forward Christina Branch connected on a triple to get the Bulldogs back within two with just under seven minutes to play in the contest.
Ferris State junior guard Destiney Robinson connected on one of her two free throw attempts with 35.6 seconds left to cut the Cardinals' lead to 58-54. The Bulldogs would continue to claw back in the final minute, however, the Cardinals capitalized on their late free throw attempts to secure the road win.
FSU finished the contest shooting only 31.8% from the floor and the Bulldogs hit on only 5-of-22 (22.7%) three-point attempts. Ferris State finished the afternoon making 11-of-17 (64.7%) attempts from the charity stripe.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals finished the contest shooting 38.3% from the field and converted 2-of-9 (22.2%) tries from downtown. SVSU ended the day connecting on 26-of-31 (83.9%) free throw attempts.
Junior guard Katie Mavis and senior forward Ashley Rando joined Christman in double-figures with Rando chipping in 13 and Mavis adding 10 points. Junior foward Christina Branch also had a solid day finishing with nine points and seven boards.
Like the Bulldogs, the Cardinals finished the afternoon with three players reaching double-figures. Emily Wendling led the way with a double-double as she finished with 17 points and 13 rebounds. Samantha Zirzow also filled the stat sheet with 14 points, five rebounds, and five assists. Finally, Jessica Alexander rounded out the Cardinals in double-figures with 11 points, which all came from the free-throw stripe.
SVSU finished the game outrebounding the Bulldogs 41-39, although the Bulldogs pulled down 16 offensive boards to just 10 offensive rebounds for the Cardinals.
The Bulldogs forced 23 SVSU and had only 15 turnovers on their side, which resulted in a 12-10 Bulldog advantage in points off of miscues.
Overall, the game featured six lead changes and the contest was tied eight times. The Bulldogs posted a 26-20 margin in points scored inside the paint and also received 22 points from their reserves to only nine for the visitors.
Ferris State netted 13 steals, including five from Mavis, and produced 10 assists with a single block compared to SVSU's 11 assists, seven steals and four blocks in the game.
The Bulldogs will play their regular-season finale against archrival Grand Valley State on Thursday (Feb. 26) night inside FSU's Jim Wink Arena. Tipoff for the "Senior Night" game is set for 6 p.m. The contest will also serve as Student-Athlete Night and the Faculty Appreciation Game on the FSU campus.