GVSU women’s hoops throttles Ferris State 85-38

GVL / Luke Holmes - Piper Tucker (11) plays defense as her opponent tries to pass the ball. GVSU Women’s Basketball defeated Ferris State University on Monday, Jan. 30, 2016.

Luke Holmes

GVL / Luke Holmes – Piper Tucker (11) plays defense as her opponent tries to pass the ball. GVSU Women’s Basketball defeated Ferris State University on Monday, Jan. 30, 2016.

Josh Peick

After a long weekend trip to the Upper Peninsula, the Grand Valley State women’s basketball team hosted Ferris State Monday, Jan. 30 for a quick turnaround. Unsure if fatigue would be an issue, the Lakers put to rest any concern early.

The Lakers jumped out to an early lead and never looked back. In convincing fashion, GVSU throttled Ferris State 85-38 to move into a tie for second with Michigan Tech in the GLIAC.

“I think both teams looked fatigued,” said GVSU coach Mike Williams. “I didn’t think we would be, but I think we were. We did a good job fighting through it.”

For only the third time this season, GVSU incorporated a non-senior into the starting lineup. Replacing an injured Kayla Dawson, the Lakers started redshirt sophomore Taylor Parmley. Instead of giving the team a spark off the bench like she has all season, Parmley kick started the offense in the opening minutes of the game.

She scored the first eight points of the game for the Lakers and finished the first quarter with 10 points.

“She’s a tough match because if you take her one-on-one, she can go right or left and she scores around the rim at a really high clip,” Williams said. “If you double her, she’s a pretty good passer.”

The Lakers kept the foot on the gas in the second quarter with three consecutive 3-pointers to start the quarter, two from Lindsay Baker and one from Taylor Lutz. GVSU outscored the Bulldogs 23-8 to take a 20-point lead into halftime.

Parmley finished the half with 14 points, and senior Piper Tucker matched her career-high with six assists.

“It’s really good for us because it brings so much confidence and energy to our team when we’re able to come out firing on all cylinders,” said guard Janae Langs.

In the second half, Tucker recorded her seventh assist early in the third quarter. The Lakers extended their lead to 28 points before the start of the fourth quarter.

In the fourth, the Lakers cleared their bench, and the bench players extended the lead even further. Fourteen different players scored for the Lakers while 16 saw action on the floor.

“We’ve got players there that if they’re called upon, they are going to be ready,” Williams said. “Unfortunately (Dawson) goes down with a broken wrist, now a couple players have to step up, and I think they are ready to do that.”

The GVSU defense continued to dominate, holding the Bulldogs to less than 40 points. The Lakers boast the top defense in the GLIAC and third in Division II allowing just 52.4 points per game. Monday’s victory marked the third time the Lakers have held opposing offenses to less than 40 points.

The Lakers (15-5, 10-4 GLIAC) will travel for a two-game weekend series against GLIAC opponents. GVSU will face Wayne State Thursday, Feb. 2 before playing rival Saginaw Valley State Saturday, Feb. 4.

“We have faced all those teams once so we know what to expect, so I think right now it’s focusing on us,” Langs said. “How can we better ourselves, especially on the offensive end.”

GVSU is currently two games behind SVSU for the top spot in the GLIAC North Division. The final regular season meeting with the Cardinals will have serious implications for seeding in the GLIAC tournament, but the Lakers focus is on winning the Wayne State game first.

“In our conference we can’t look over anybody,” Parmley said. “We have to give our all every game because anybody can beat anybody.”