Ferris ready for quarterfinal battle with Harding

Zach Sieler and the Ferris defense hopes to shut down Harding on Saturday.

BIG RAPIDS — The fourth-seeded Ferris State University Bulldogs host seventh-seeded Harding (Ark.) in the quarterfinal round of the NCAA Division II Playoffs this Saturday. Kickoff is set for noon in the Super Region Three Championship at Top Taggart Field.

It’s also a national quarterfinal round game.

The Bulldogs are currently 11-1 overall this season and are riding a nine-game winning streak following last Saturday’s 31-21 win at top-seeded Fort Hays State (Kan.). Meanwhile, Harding is 10-3 overall and has won its last 10 games in a row. The Bisons, who are a member of the Great American Conference, are coming off a 34-24 win at third-seeded Ashland last week. Saturday’s matchup will mark the first time in which the two squads have ever played.

Tickets for Ferris State’s home playoff game are on sale now and fans are encouraged to purchase tickets in advance. Ticket prices are $10 for adults, $7 for senior citizens (age 65+) along with $5 for students in grades K-12. In addition, FSU students and college students from competing schools with a valid ID card are also $5. Children ages five and under are free. Visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com or call (231) 591-2888 for more info.

Ferris State is coming off a historic campaign as the Bulldogs posted a 12-3 overall record in 2016 while advancing to the NCAA Division II national semifinals for only the second time in school history. In 2016, the Bulldogs also posted a school-record tying 12 victories. Ferris State received the program’s third-straight NCAA Football Playoff berth and captured the Super Region Four Championship by beating archrival Grand Valley State during a memorable run.

Over the last four seasons at Ferris State, the Bulldogs have compiled a 45-6 overall record and claimed two conference championships, posted two unbeaten regular-seasons, captured a regional title and reached the national semifinals. Ferris State has also accumulated two Harlon Hill National Player of the Year trophies, twice had a student-athlete tabbed as the nation’s National Scholar-Athlete of the Year and won four postseason games.

Ferris State senior center and hometown product Jake Daugherty is one of eight national finalists for the 2017 Gene Upshaw Award presented to the top Division II lineman in the country. Daugherty is a three-year starter and two-time All-American up front on one of the nation’s top offensive lines.

 

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Posted by John Raffel

John is a sports reporter with the Pioneer as well as the Herald Review and The Lake County Star. He also coordinates the weekly Pioneer sports outdoors page. He can be reached at (231) 592-8356 or by email at jraffel@pioneergroup.com.

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