COLUMBUS, Ohio — Following a 4-1 start to begin the season and a two-game winning streak that culminated in winning the Gary Miller Classic Championship, Ohio Dominican's men's basketball team will hit the road for its first GLIAC contests of the season this week.
The Panthers will face Ferris State on Thursday, December 1 at 8 p.m. at Big Rapids High School and will take on Grand Valley State on Saturday, December 3 at 7 p.m. in Allendale, Michigan.
About Ohio Dominican
ODU (4-1, 0-0 GLIAC) is off to its best start to a season since the 2004-05 season, defeating Malone by a final score of 75-58 and earning a 66-56 victory against Gannon in the Gary Miller Classic on Friday and Saturday.
Through five contests, Ohio Dominican ranks fifth in the GLIAC in points per game (83.6), third in field goal percentage (.525) and second in three-point field goal percentage (.434). The Panthers also lead the conference and rank 14th in NCAA Division II in assists per game (19.2), an improvement of 4.7 assists per game from the squad's average of 14.5 assists per contest a season ago.
Defensively, ODU has been stifling opponents from the three-point line, holding the opposition to just 25.7 percent shooting from behind the arc, which ranks second in the GLIAC and 15th in the country.
Freshman Hasan Varence (Queens, New York) is averaging 14 points per game and 8.2 rebounds per game, ranking second on the squad in points per game and first on the team and fourth in the GLIAC in rebounds per game. Junior Ronnie Williams (Columbus, Ohio) leads the Panthers in scoring thus far, averaging 15.8 points per contest, also chipping in 4.4 assists per game. Junior Shemar Waugh (Columbus, Ohio) is averaging 10.8 points per game and leads the Panthers in assists per contest at 5.4. Off the bench, freshman Sam Hickey (Toledo, Ohio) is averaging eight points per game on 55 percent shooting from three-point range, which ranks seventh in the GLIAC.
About Ferris State
The Bulldogs (4-1, 0-0 GLIAC) won their first four regular season contests before dropping an 85-75 decision to Wisconsin-Parkside on Saturday. Through its first five contests, Ferris State ranks fourth in the GLIAC in points per game (84.8) on 50.8 percent shooting from the field, also ranking second in the conference in free throw percentage (78.3).
FSU is led by sophomore center Zach Hankins, who is averaging 19.3 points per game and 10.2 rebounds per game, ranking fourth in the GLIAC in points per game and first in the conference in rebounds per game. Hankins is currently the only player in the conference averaging a double-double.
The Panthers are seeking their first victory against Ferris State, holding an 0-5 record all-time against the Bulldogs. ODU will face FSU on Thursday, December 1 at 8 p.m., with the contest being played at Big Rapids High School.
About Grand Valley State
GVSU (4-3, 0-0 GLIAC) defeated Salem International 92-68 in its last contest and enters this week having won four of its last five games.
The Lakers boast the best defense in the GLIAC statistically, holding their opponents to a conference-low 59.7 points per game on 35.6 percent shooting from the floor, also recording a conference-best 10 steals per contest. Offensively, Grand Valley averages 78.6 points per game and ranks second in the conference behind Ohio Dominican in assists per game (19.1).
Senior Luke Ryskamp leads the Lakers with 13.3 points per game on 39.5 percent shooting from three-point range.
Ohio Dominican will be looking for its first win against Grand Valley State on Saturday, December 3 at 7 p.m. when it travels to Allendale for the third time.
Contact: Aaron McPherson