Wednesday evening on a gorgeous spring night, April 28, the Rams girls lacrosse team traveled to Mehney Field to take on the Pioneers from East Grand Rapids (EGR).
EGR proved to be less than hospitable in the game’s first nine minutes, as they raced out to a 7-0 lead. That deficit is the largest the Rams had faced all year in building their 8-2 record.
Coach Neerken called a time out to settle the Rams and get them to play one goal at a time. The Rams, led by Andi Raymond, quickly scored four goals of their own, and the game was on with the Rams back in it. Over the remaining 15 minutes of the half, Rockford went on a scoring tear of their own, outgunning the Pioneers 8-2 over that time.
Trailing 9-8, Coaches Emery and Neerken continued to tinker with the lineup to get the proper match-ups against EGR. Junior Sydney Gray, in goal in the second half, led the defensive effort for the Rams with six saves, as they shut down EGR, only allowing two goals in the half. The transition defense led by Jill Fowle, Lexi O’Connor and Alyssa Neumen frustrated the EGR offense all half.
The Rams ran away at the end, 16-11, and their offense killed eight minutes of clock at the end with their excellent ball movement and communication. Leading the way for the Rams was Raymond with six goals, and the Neumen “sister act” had five with junior Alyssa Neumen scoring three and freshman Erica Neumen two. Single goals were scored by Taylor Balch, Kelsei Streeter and Meagan Emery. Emery also contributed four caused turnovers and six ground balls, while Abbey Neerken matched her in the ground ball department and had two takeaways as well.
The Rams move in the conference showdown with Catholic Central Wednesday night, May 5 at the Ted Carlson Memorial Stadium.
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