Lady Rams water polo faces tough opponents in well-fought games

The Rockford girls varsity water polo travelled to Stevenson, Ill., on Friday through Saturday, April 20-21, to take on very talented northern Chicago area teams at the Stevenson Varsity Classic. Three teams from Michigan were invited to the tournament as Okemos and East Grand Rapids also participated.

Game one Friday night for Rockford was against Fenwick, Ill. The Rams scored three goals in the first half, by Adrianna Craft, Maddie Levine and Morgan Longberg. However, the Fenwick team kept up a steady pace of quick shooting, scoring two goals each period. At the half the score was 3-4 (Fenwick).

The Chicago area teams are known for their physical defensive play and in the second half held the Rockford offense to no goals, although Casey Wolfer led the teams in steals with seven. Goalie Ellianna Raymond had 11 saves. The final score was 3-8.

The Fenwick team will be travelling to Rockford for their invitational this weekend and Head Coach Scott Voltz is looking forward to the possibility of a rematch.

Four of the five games were on Saturday; Rockford’s second game was early against Mundelein. The Rams led early on, 6-3 at the end of the first period. However, Mundelein came back in the second, scoring two goals, including one at the buzzer, making the score 6-5 at the half. The second half had a couple of ties, but the Rams fell with a final score of 8-9.

Scoring for Rockford were Craft (three), Wolfer (three), Levine (two) and Kara Vandawater (one). Wolfer again led the team in steals with four and Raymond had nine saves on goal.

The Rams continued to improve and respond to the defensive tone of the Chicago teams; in the third game they played McAuley. The Rams led 2-1 all the way going into the fourth period. However, McAuley tied it up to 2-2 and scored again late in the fourth to a final score of 2-3 (McAuley).

Scoring for Rockford were Marie Siegel and Longberg. Wolfer had nine steals and one assist, Craft had five steals, and goalkeeper Raymond had seven saves.

Game four was against tournament host Stevenson High School. The Rams scored six goals in the first half, holding Stevenson to no goals, so Rockford was up 6-0 at the half. Stevenson scored two goals in the third period and Rockford responded with two goals.

In the fourth period Rockford and Stevenson each scored a goal, and the Rams won 9-3. Scoring for Rockford were Craft (three), Wolfer (two), Vandawater (two) and Longberg (two).

The last game was against Bremen, who had earlier won against Okemos in overtime. In the first period the score was 4-2 and Rockford was up. In the second period, Rockford added five more goals while holding Bremen to one goal. In the second half Rockford added four goals, but Bremen also scored four, putting the final score at 13-7. Scoring for Rockford were Craft (six), Wolfer (three), Vandawater (three) and Levine (one). Raymond in goal had 15 saves.

Come out and watch the Rams play Thursday, April 26 at Rockford High School against Zeeland. Junior varsity plays at 6 p.m. and varsity at 7 p.m. Also, Monday, April 30 is the Third Annual Purple Polo game with Jenison. This is a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society and all funds raised this night will go to the Rockford Relay for Life.

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