SIOUX FALLS, S.D. -- The top-seeded and No. 2 nationally-ranked Ferris State Bulldogs captured the 2018 NCAA Division II Men's Basketball National Championship today (March 24) after taking down third seed Northern State by a final score of 71-69 on Heritage Court inside the sold out Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls. With the win, Ferris State earns the first team national championship in school history and completed the season with a 38-1 record. FSU is only the second GLIAC men's basketball program to win the D2 national title (Findlay 2009).
#1 FERRIS STATE DEF. #3 NORTHERN STATE, 71-69 | BOX SCORE
Northern State jumped out to an early 7-point advantage in front of a hostile crowd of supporters for the Wolves. Ferris State remained poised and locked down defensively in the first half to take a 2-point lead into the halftime break as NABC D2 National Player of the Year Zach Hankins produced 14 first-half points on 7-of-12 shooting while being a force in the paint with his 6-10 frame.
The second half featured an epic back-and-forth battle which a couple ties and lead changes. Ferris State trailed by three with three minutes to play before the Bulldogs held NSU off the scoreboard over the final 2:55 and porceeded to go on a 5-0 run to capture the national title in dramatic fashion as the Wolves missed a three-point attempt at the buzzer. Hankins led the Bulldogs with 19 points and five rebounds as the Bulldogs fired 47 percent from the field.