Rockford varsity lacrosse traveled to Holt, Mich. last week to compete in the regional playoffs. The Rams pounded South Lyon in the semifinals 15-5, then fell to Holt 10-7 in the finals.
In the semifinals, South Lyon jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first period before the Rams got rolling. The Rams scored the next 11 goals and ended the half with an 11-2 lead.
Juniors Karson Konkle and Kento Nakano had a big first half with two goals and two assists each. Also performing well were Mitch Newton and Blake McDonald with two goals each. Spencer Sims added one goal. Scoring their first varsity goal were Trevor Mills and Landon Howard. Jake Lewis and Kane Wolfer had one assist each for the half.
In the third period, South Lyon scored three quick goals to tighten the game. Sims soon stopped the bleeding with a goal late in the third to make the lead a solid 12-5.
The Rams owned the fourth quarter, moving the ball well and adding three more goals to end the game 15-5.
Under cold, cloudy, misty skies the Rams fell to Holt in the finals with an ending score of 10-7. Playing a tight first period the score was 2-1, after 12 minutes, with Holt holding the slight advantage.
The Rams got themselves in trouble during the second and third periods, often playing with a man down. At the end of the third period, the score stood at Holt 9, Rams 4.
The Rams fought fiercely throughout the fourth quarter but ran out of time. The final score stood at 10-7 to Holt’s advantage. Leading the scoring for the Rams were senior Mitchell Newton and sophomore Kane Wolfer, each scoring three goals. McDonald contributed one goal. Assists went to Newton (two), Nakano (three) and Wolfer (one). Connor Flynn played a fabulous game with 16 huge saves. His third save of this game marked the 700th of his varsity career. Defense was led by Jon Hazy, who picked up six ground balls. Jordan Shiparski and Caleb Cuneo had four each.
This has been a wonderful run for this season’s seniors. Eight of this year’s 14 graduating seniors have played together since sixth grade. At that time, Rockford lacrosse was brand-new to the Rockford sport schedule. Their sixth-grade year, that Rockford lacrosse team had a 21-1-1 record, losing only to veteran lacrosse team Cranbrook.
The seniors finished their high school careers with many records. Newton now holds the Rockford lacrosse most points record in a varsity career. He held a spot on varsity his freshman year and has 210 points for a Rockford varsity lacrosse record. Flynn also was a varsity player his freshman year. He now holds the most saves record with 708 career saves. He is also the first Rockford Ram to earn a Division I scholarship and will be continuing his lacrosse career at the University of Detroit next fall. Other seniors will be representing Rockford next year as the college lacrosse season rolls out. Rockford will be represented at Aquinas, Grand Valley, Davenport, Colorado, University of Detroit, and Michigan State, and perhaps more will be added by September.
Rockford varsity lacrosse finishes a great season. Congratulations to all the players. The seniors are especially wished luck for the future. They have grown into fine young men and will represent our town well as they embark on their next journey.