The Ferris State University women's basketball squad closed out the pre-Christmas portion of its schedule by dropping a 81-74 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) decision to the Findlay Oilers on Sunday (Dec. 14) afternoon inside FSU's Jim Wink Arena at Big Rapids, Mich.
The Oilers led by as many as 15 points in the opening stanza and took a 44-31 halftime advantage before the Bulldogs battled back in the final period. Both teams were playing league games for the second consecutive day.
FSU trimmed Findlay's lead down to a single point twice in the last 12 minutes of the game, but never could take the lead. FSU cut the margin to 67-66 with 5:33 left in the contest on a layup by senior forward/center Jenna Guay, but the Oilers answered with five-straight points and maintained at least a four-point edge the rest of the way.
The Oilers shot 46.3% (31-67) from the floor and made 13-of-29 (44.8%) three-pointers in the contest. Meanwhile, Ferris was 26-of-62 (41.9%) in field goal attempts and only three-of-13 (23.1%) behind the three-point line. FSU did convert 19-of-27 (70.4%) free throws compared to UF's six-of-10 (60%) figure.
Both teams had 21 turnovers and the Bulldogs owned a 43-34 rebounding edge with 12 boards coming on the offensive end.
The Oilers, who played only eight players in the contest, had four reach double-figure scoring. Maggie Gompers led the way with 19 points, Ashley Westenbarger tallied 17 points, Laura Bardall contributed 15 points and Audra Mihalic finished with 13 points.
The Bulldogs went deeper into the lineup as all 13 players in uniform saw action. Senior guard/forward Caitlin Hutchison had a game-high tying 19 points with eight rebounds to pace FSU. Senior guard Teghan Thelen netted 18 points and sophomore guard Chelsea Simonetti had 10 points for the Bulldogs. Thelen also dished out five assists.
With the win, the Oilers improved to 6-1 overall and 3-1 in the GLIAC. Ferris' loss was its fourth-straight conference setback as the Bulldogs fell to 2-6 overall and 1-4 in league play.
The Bulldogs will have a 15-day layoff until they host Marygrove in their final non-conference game of the season on Monday, Dec. 29, with tipoff set for 6 p.m. (EST) inside Wink Arena. FSU resumes conference play on Thursday, Jan. 8, by visiting Lake Superior State for a 5:30 p.m. (EST) encounter in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.