Late Jumper Lifts Ferris To League Home Triumph
FSU freshman Tricia Principe handles the ball in Thursday's home win over Tiffin (Photo Courtesy of Sandy Gholston)
Tricia Principe

Ferris State University sophomore guard Becci Houdek's free throw line jumper with eight seconds remaining lifted the Bulldog women's basketball squad to a thrilling 83-82 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) home win over Tiffin on Thursday (Jan. 15) evening at FSU's Jim Wink Arena in Big Rapids, Mich.

The Bulldogs trailed by four points with 41 seconds to play, but Houdek hit a three-pointer with 24 seconds left to cut the deficit to only one point. FSU then fouled TU's Kylene Spiegel, who missed the front end of a one-and-one with 20 seconds to play. After Houdek's jumper with eight seconds left, the Dragons drove the length of the floor but turned the ball over with only two seconds to go.

FSU trailed by seven points with 5:08 left, but scored seven-straight points to climb back into the contest. The Dragons led 37-32 at halftime, however Ferris outscored TU 51-45 in the final period.

Senior forward/center Ashley Fleming paced FSU with a personal career-high 21 points. Houdek added 15 points, senior forward Jenna Guay totaled 12 points and senior guard Teghan Thelen netted 10 points for Ferris State.

Their performances helped offset a game-high 29 points by Tiffin's Megan Fletcher. Leanne Lucius tallied 18 points, Spiegel contributed 17 points and Mandy Jaeb scored 11 points as both teams had four players in double-figure scoring.

FSU turned the ball over 23 times in the game, but shot 65.6% in the final half after only a 32% first-half effort. FSU finished 30-of-60 (50%) for the game and was six-of-15 (40%) behind the three-point arc along with 17-of-19 (89.5%) at the free throw stripe.

The Dragons were outrebounded 36-32 and had 19 miscues of their own. TU shot 47.1% (33-70) from the field and was 12-of-31 (38.7%) from three-point range. The Dragons were four-of-five (80%) from the line with the only miss being Spiegel's attempt in the closing seconds.

Ferris finished with 23 assists, 10 steals and five blocked shots in snapping a seven-game conference losing skid. The Dragons netted 22 assists and 12 steals in dropping to 4-10 overall and 3-6 in the GLIAC.

FSU improved to 4-9 overall and 2-7 in conference play. The game featured 13 lead changes.

The Bulldogs continue their five-game homestand by hosting Ashland on Saturday (Jan. 17) with tipoff set for 12 p.m. (EST). Saturday's game will be part of a FSU Athletics tripleheader as the Bulldog men square off against the Eagles at 2 p.m. (EST) and the Ferris hockey team hosts Ohio State at 5:05 p.m. (EST).