Ferris State Wins First Ever National Championship
The Ferris State men’s basketball team won the school’s first ever National Championship Saturday when they took Division II basketball crown in Sioux Falls, SD
The Ferris State Bulldogs were the top seed in the tournament, but they had to play Northern State, the three seed, in their home state of South Dakota.
The game was a tight affair from the start, with neither team leading by more than seven points. Ferris took a one point lead, 70-69, on a Zach Hankins hook shot, and seemed to seal the win when Noah King stole the ball with less than thirty seconds left. But King missed on a drive to the basket and the ball went out of bounds to Northern State.
When Ferris disputed the call, the officials consulted the video replay and gave the ball to the Bulldogs. A subsequent foul sent Ferris’ Markese Mayfield to the line for two shots. His first shot went it, but was negated because his foot was on the line. Mayfield’s second shot made the score 71-69 with ten seconds left. A three point shot to win it by Northern’s Darin Peterka was off the mark at the buzzer, giving Ferris the title.
Division II Player of the Year Hankins told CBS Sports, “It was what we were shooting for all year”, after winning the title. Coach Andy Bronkema said winning a championship “is something I’ve been thinking about since I was young.”
The team tied a NCAA Division II record for most wins in a season with 38. It was Ferris State’s first national title in any sport.
NATIONAL CHAMPIONS! pic.twitter.com/3y2TvpsBLF
— Ferris Athletics (@ferrisathletics) March 24, 2018