Jan. 17, 2013
SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. - The Grand Valley State women's basketball team picked up its third straight win, leading from start to finish, as it defeated Lake Superior State, 69-56, on Thursday evening in Cooper Gym.
GVSU improves to 12-3 on the year and more importantly 8-3 in GLIAC play to move into a three-way tie for first in the North Division. LSSU falls to 5-10 overall and 4-7 in league action. The Lakers now travel back to Allendale to host Northwood on Saturday at 8 p.m.
Grand Valley State jumped out to a 20-9 lead capped by back-to-back three-pointers from sophomore Breanna Kellogg (DeWitt, Mich.) and junior Kellie Watson (Ionia, Mich.) with 9:36 on the clock in the opening stanza.
Lake Superior State battled back, opening an 11-6 run with 4:35 left in the first that lasted through end of the stanza, giving GVSU a slight 31-26 lead into the break. LSSU's leading scorer Maria Blazejewski tallied 11 of her game-high 18 points in the opening half.
The Lakers quickly pushed their lead to double digits with three straight lay ups from senior Briauna Taylor (Livonia, Mich.), junior Dani Crandall (Eaton Rapids, Mich.) and senior Alex Stelfox (Bowie, Md.) for a 37-26 lead at the 18:19 mark.
Despite Grand Valley State holding a lead for the remainder of the game, LSSU cut it to single digits on a jumper by Stephanie Fisher and continued to be in striking distance over the next nine minutes. Taylor then hit three-pointer to put GVSU back out in front, 51-41, with 9:37 on the clock.
The teams traded baskets for the next four minutes until GVSU scored back-to-back baskets to go ahead, 60-50, with less than five to play. The Lakers hit nine of their 12 free throws down the stretch to secure the game.
Taylor paced Grand Valley State with 13 points on 5-of-10 from the field, while also tallying team-bests with eight rebounds, seven assists and four steals. Sophomore Meryl Cripe (Elmhurst, Ill.) was the only other Laker to reach double digits with a career-high 11 points. All six other Lakers that scored had at least five points with 25 coming from the bench.
GVSU shot 41 percent from the floor, going 23-for-56, while Lake Superior State went 21-for-49 (42 percent) for the floor. Grand Valley State held a 37-29 edge off the glass including 10 offensive boards leading to 12 second chance points.
Blazejewski recorded a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Fisher tallied 14 points. Raven Trammell hit three of Lake Superior State's five total long balls for nine points.
Grand Valley State is now in a three-way tie atop the North Division standings with Michigan Tech and Ferris State. The Bulldogs dropped its Thursday game against Northwood, 70-46, in Midland, while MTU won 77-56 against Wayne State.