Both basketball teams top Lake State

Bulldog basketball traveled to Lake State on Saturday, and both the men’s and women’s teams recorded wins.

On the women’s side, the Bulldogs earned their 15th win of the season, virtue of a 75-67 road victory against the Lakers on Saturday.

Ferris (15-10) earned their first win since falling in two close home games last week and completed the season sweep against Lake Superior State for the sixth year in row, making it 12 wins against the Lakers since 2017.

“It feels good to finally be back in the win column,” senior Mallory McCartney said. “We learned a lot, but we’re happy to be back where we should be.”

Head coach Kurt Westendorp’s squad got off to a slow start, trailing the Lakers 19-13 after the opening quarter. The Bulldogs used four three-pointers in the second quarter to take a 35-33 lead going into halftime.

The Lakers had a one-point lead after the third quarter, but Ferris closed out the game on a 19-10 run to earn the victory.

“We controlled the pace and we were getting great shots,” McCartney said. “It always makes it easier when you have a player [like] Chloe Idoni in the paint. If we ever go into little droughts on offense, we know we can run a play, get the ball inside to her and she’ll go get us one.”

Idoni led with 25 points, followed by Kenzie Bowers with 15 and Elle Irwin with 13. 

McCartney had seven assists for the Bulldogs, which now puts her at 500 in her career as a Bulldog. She also added a team high of four steals, while Irwin recorded three blocks.

Mallory McCartney drives to the basket during Ferris’ 81-57 victory over Lake State in Big Rapids Jan. 7. The Bulldogs beat Lake State Feb. 18 to complete the season sweep over the Lakers. Photo by: Kevin McDermott, Ferris Athletics

With her performance, McCartney is now only one rebound away from being the first Bulldog in recent memory to reach 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 500 assists in her career. 

“I always just want to get the win,” McCartney said. “Focusing on winning obviously helps your individual goals, so I’m very happy and very blessed to be able to do it. None of it means a lot, but it’s always cool when that stuff comes.”

Saturday’s win moves the Bulldogs to 8-8 in GLIAC play, only one and a half games behind Northern Michigan for the fifth spot in the conference standings. Ferris will finish off the regular season with a west Michigan weekend facing bottom-ranked Davenport on Thursday and then top-ranked Grand Valley State for Saturday’s finale. The Bulldogs will then await the seeding for the upcoming GLIAC tournament, slated to begin on Wednesday, March 1.

For the men, they beat Lake State 72-58. This game marked revenge against the Lakers, as they beat Ferris in Big Rapids on Jan. 7 and ended the Bulldog’s five game win streak. The loss sparked the team to go 10-1 in their next 11 games, outscoring opponents 893-748 in the process. It’s the third time that the Bulldogs won in a rematch situation.

Thanks to his best performance of the season, sophomore Solomon Oraegbu led Ferris in all facets of scoring during the win. He was 15-25 from the field, 3-4 from the three point line and 5-5 from the charity stripe. His 38 points were a season high.

“Solomon’s that type of player,” head coach Andy Bronkema said. “He was incredible today.”

Halfway through the first half, it was all Lake State as they jumped out to a near ten point lead. However, the Bulldogs went to halftime with a 30-27 point lead.

Other than Oraegbu, Ben Davidson was the only other player on the team to reach double digits, scoring ten points. Ferris shot 49% from the floor and 6-of-15 for three’s. Defensively, the Bulldogs out rebounded the Lakers 45-37 and had 34 points inside the paint for the day.

Lake State was only one game behind the Bulldogs coming into the Saturday game. However, with the Ferris win, the Bulldogs now share the top spot in the GLIAC with Wisconsin Parkside and Northern Michigan and hold the tiebreaker with a 21-6 overall record.

The final bouts of the regular season are coming up this weekend. The Bulldogs will go on the road to play against Davenport on Thursday before meeting arch-rival Grand Valley on Saturday and closing out the season.

Joseph Nagy contributed to the reporting of this article.