GVSU run over by rival Ferris State, 40-24

GVL / Eric Coulter
Laker football practice

Eric Coulter

GVL / Eric Coulter Laker football practice

Brady Fredericksen

For 11 years, the Anchor-Bone trophy has resided in Allendale as the Grand Valley State University football team has presumed ownership over the trophy and rivalry over Ferris State University during that span.

But in one game, all that changed as the Lakers (5-1, 4-1 GLIAC) dropped a 40-24 decision at the hands of Ferris State (4-2, 3-2 GLIAC) on Saturday.

Despite find some success slowing the opposing running game in last week’s victory over Michigan Technological University, the Lakers were gashed by the Bulldogs option-based offense. Quarterback Jason Vander Laan carried for 191 yards and two touchdowns, tailback Korey Ringer carried for 131 yards and a score, while Jamaal Jackson ran for 107 yards and a touchdown.

“Didn’t stop the run, didn’t stop the inside run at all — that starts with me,” said GVSU head coach Matt Mitchell. “We didn’t stop the run and give enough possessions to our offense.”

It wasn’t just the GVSU defense that struggled to find a rhythm, either. After putting together the best game of his career last week, sophomore quarterback Isiah Grimes struggled all game. He completed just 14-of-31 passes for 188 yards a touchdown and an interception late in the fourth quarter that sealed the Lakers’ fate.

“Some of the plays we got in kind of late, so I had to try to see what their defense was doing and didn’t have time to check out the plays,” Grimes said. “Just keep our heads up, we don’t really want to ever say what good or bad we can take out of something, we just gotta keep getting better week by week.”

One of the main culprits for Grimes slow day was an inability to connect with wide receiver Charles Johnson. The usually productive receiver was held to just one catch for four yards, and junior Brandan Green finished with five receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown.

Despite jumping out to a 17-3 lead, the Ferris State running game continued to wear on the Lakers throughout the game, concluding in a 70-yard touchdown run by Ringer to open the second half.

Linebacker Charles Hill led the defense, piling up 17 tackles while reading the tailback in the Ferris State option attack. After forcing two fumbles on back-to-back drives, the Lakers failed to find a solution to Ferris State’s quarterback counter, one that led to 150 first-half yards for the redshirt freshman.

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