Big Defensive Performance Lifts Ferris State To Decisive Home Victory Over Lake Erie

Postgame Video Highlights 
Postgame Press Conference 

Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University football squad rolled to a second consecutive home win as the Bulldogs beat the Lake Erie Storm 42-10 on Saturday (Oct. 22) afternoon at FSU's Top Taggart Field.

The Bulldogs scored 21 second quarter points to break the game open and never trailed in improving to 6-2 overall this season and in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC).

Nationally 24th-ranked FSU jumped in front first in the opening period as senior slot Jamel Lockett scored on a one-yard TD run with 9:10 to play in the first stanza while finishing off a short six-play, 24-yard drive that began after the FSU defense forced an early turnover.

The Storm tallied their only first half points on the ensuing drive as they marched 57 yards in nine plays before Austin Baker converted a 32-yard field goal to cut the deficit to 7-3 after one period.

The second quarter, though, was all FSU as the Bulldogs scored three times. The first came on a short three-yard TD run from junior quarterback Reggie Bell on the first possession of the second frame following a long punt return by junior slot Jajuan Pollock.

Soon after, the Bulldogs needed only five plays and 43 yards to find paydirt again when junior tailback Jahaan Brown rambled in from four-yards out, giving FSU a 21-3 edge with 9:44 left in the opening half.

The Bulldogs added a final first-half score to push the margin to 28-3 at halftime when Bell raced into the endzone on a 10-yard keeper for his second score of the game with less than six minutes left in the opening half. It finished an eight-play, 65-yard scoring jaunt.

Any hopes of a Lake Erie comeback were quickly dashed in the third period when FSU drove 79 yards in three plays to increase the lead to 35-3 on Bell's 30-yard TD pass to Shakur Sanders.

Ferris State later added a fourth-quarter defensive score with 10:58 to play when backup
linebacker Devonte McGregor scooped up a loose ball and scored on a 28-yard fumble return.

Lake Erie finally reached the endzone for the only time when quarterback John Banyasz scored on an eight-yard run with only 2:03 remaining to account for the final margin.

Ferris State totaled 416 yards of total offense to only 273 for Lake Erie, which was limited to only 83 yards rushing on 49 attempts by an FSU starting defensive unit that gave up only three points.

Bell completed 16-of-21 passes for 223 yards and a score while running for a team-high 47 yards on 11 carries and two TD's on the FSU side. Sanders caught three balls for 56 yards while Marquel Hines also had three catches for 53 yards and Brown added three grabs for 51 yards out of the backfield. Lockett caught a game-high five passes for 31 yards.

On the Lake Erie side, Banyasz completed 18-of-31 throws for 190 yards with Adam Szaniszlo catching five passes for 74 yards. Antwan Harris paced the Storm on the ground with 41 yards on 13 carries.

The Bulldog defense sacked Banyasz six times and forced two turnovers in the contest. Senior linebacker Anthony Darkangelo had a squad-best 12 stops for FSU while sophomore end Zach Sieler had a huge afternoon with 11 tackles, including eight solo hits, to go with four sacks (-21 yards), 7.5 tackles for loss (-31 yards), a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.

The win was Ferris State's sixth of the year, giving FSU its 11th winning season in the last 14 years. The Bulldogs also improved to 7-0 all-time versus Lake Erie with the triumph.

Ferris State wraps up its three-game homestand with a big game next Saturday (Oct. 29) at Top Taggart Field. FSU hosts Wayne State in a matchup of nationally-ranked squads with kickoff set for 1 p.m. (ET) in Big Rapids.