Ashand holds back pesky Bulldogs 91-79

Ferris’ Adrienne Anderson (2) calls out a play against Ashland on Thursday. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

BIG RAPIDS — Ashland is a national women’s basketball Division II power battling with another powerhouse program Grand Valley, for first place in the GLIAC’s South Division.

Ashland, a former national champion, entered the game 19-2, matching Grand Valley’s overall record. But the Lakers have a 12-1 record compared to Ashland’s 11-2.

With this in mind the Eagles were in no mood for Ferris State to pull off an upset, and defeated the Bulldogs (11-9, 8-6), 91-79 on Thursday.

“Our team worked very hard,” sophomore guard Adrienne Anderson said. “It wasn’t the outcome we wanted but it’s motivation to do more.”

Ferris, keyed with another stellar performance by Alex Bush with 22 points took Ashland just about down to the wire before the Eagles sealed the deal.

Bush scored 10 points in the first half, which ended in a 43-35 Ashland lead.

The Bulldogs made changes in the second half to get within five points, but the Eagles continually responded with a key basket.

Bush scored a 3-pointer for Ferris early in the third to cut the lead to 50-45. Ashland’s Jodi Johnson scored off a steal to give the Eagles a 62-52 lead late in the third. It was 65-58 after the third quarter.

Haille Hendemann scored at 3:30 for a 83-69 verdict. Ferris’ Riley Blair scored twice to cut the score to 83-73 with 1:55 to play.

“We played team defense,” Anderson said. “We worked vey hard on effort. That’s all we can ask for.”

“We were basically back to full strength with Adrienne back there,” Ferris guard Riley Blair said. “Ashland’s a really good team. They definitely felt us tonight. We played them tight the whole game. I think if we clean up a few things defensively and offensively we missed things we should finish. If we clean up on those, the next time we see them it could be a different game.

“We may seen them in the GLIAC tournament. That’s our goal. We’ll get them a third time this year.”“Our team worked very hard,” sophomore guard Adrienne Anderson said. “It wasn’t the outcome we wanted but it’s motivaion to do more.

Johnson was 12-of-12 from the free throw line and scored 30 points while grabbing 12 rebounds for Ashland.

“Ashland works well together,” Anderson said.

The Eagles were 45.2 percent from the floor while Ferris was 31 of 72 for 43.1 percent. Ferris was outrebounded 51-33. Ferris is home with Wayne State on Saturday.

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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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