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Ferris looks to bounce back after dropping first game of season

by Published: Sep 11, 2013

Challenging the Champs: Ferris sophomore quarterback Jason Vander Laan eludes a North Dakota State tackle during Saturday’s game. Ferris lost to FCS Champion North Dakota State 56-10 and is now preparing to face Lake Erie Collegef or the start of Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play. Courtesy Photo By: Dennis Hubbard

Challenging the Champs: Ferris sopho­more quar­ter­back Jason Vander Laan eludes a North Dakota State tackle dur­ing Saturday’s game. Ferris lost to FCS Champion North Dakota State 56–10 and is now prepar­ing to face Lake Erie Collegef or the start of Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play.
Courtesy Photo By: Dennis Hubbard

The Ferris State Bulldogs will bat­tle against Lake Erie College in Ferris’ first home game of the season.

The Bulldogs (0−1) suf­fered a 56–10 defeat at the hands of two-time defend­ing FCS cham­pion North Dakota State in their first match up of the year.

Head coach Tony Annese allowed his play­ers to stand watch­ing the ban­ner rais­ing in the Fargodome. Annese told play­ers in a video fea­ture of the game to “inter­nal­ize the vision” of what it meant to be a champion.

“I think we’re a bet­ter team for going to North Dakota this year than we were com­ing off a win at St. Francis [Ohio] last year in week one,” Annese said.

The team will look to get its first vic­tory of the sea­son against a team they have beaten three years in a row.

“It should be excit­ing” Ferris sopho­more quar­ter­back Jason Vander Laan said. “It will be nice to play at home with our fans, and we’re look­ing for­ward to the suc­cess we believe we can have in our conference.”

Vander Laan threw for 135 yards and a touch­down in last year’s 49–21 win against Lake Erie (0−1) while also rush­ing for 35 yards.

In last season’s match up, it was Ferris junior quar­ter­back Taylor Masiewicz who shined against the Storm, throw­ing for 145 yards and three touchdowns.

Ferris’ defense is look­ing to have a bounce back per­for­mance. The defense allowed eight touch­downs in their pre­vi­ous game against NDSU.

“The ten GLIAC games from here on out are must wins,” Annese said.

The Bulldogs have not allowed more than 21 points in their last three match ups against the Storm.

“I think we are a good team,” Ferris junior defen­sive end Carlton Johnson said. “We just need to improve on our defense. If we do that, we are going to win.”

With Lake Erie com­ing off a crush­ing last-minute loss to rival Gannon College, the Bulldogs hope to add another tally to the Storm’s loss column.

“I feel we are going to go to work this week and come out strong,” Ferris red shirt fresh­man Kitwana Clark said. “It’s the home opener. It’s the first time Ferris and the Big Rapids com­mu­nity will get a chance to see what we have to offer this year. We will come ready and even more focused than we were for the first game. This is the start of GLIAC play for us, and I believe we will put on a good show.”

Ferris will pad up against Lake Erie at 7 p.m. on Saturday at Top-Taggart Field.