By Randy Gregory
The girl’s basketball team from Rockford began the week with their third successive victory on the road at Hudsonville by a score of 51-39 on Tuesday, February 5th. But they ran into the juggernaut that is Grand Haven in their first home contest in two weeks on Friday, February 8th. The Buccaneers ran their winning streak to 32 games by pasting the Rams 55-35 to solidify their hold on the top spot in the OK Red conference. The results of the week left Rockford at 10-5 on the season and 5-2 in the OK Red. Both of the losses in conference play came at the hands of Grand Haven.
The Rams emerged from a 20-20 halftime tie with Hudsonville by outscoring the Eagles 13-8 in the third stanza to take a 33-28 edge into the final quarter. The final 18-point final quarter was mounted almost exclusively by the Rams at the free throw line. Rockford scored 16 of their 18 points over the final eight minutes at the charity stripe. The Eagles resorted to fouling late but found themselves falling further and further behind before finally giving up the ghost.
Sophomore standout Logan McCane led Rockford with 18 points while senior Mary Gipson added 13.
The Rams held themselves within shouting distance of Grand Haven for the first three and a half quarters on Friday. Rockford was trailing 40-31 before the Bucs went on a 15-4 run to end the contest and any dreams the Rams had of pulling off the upset. Grand Haven features an imposing front line that stands 6’5”, 6’1” and 6’1” while the Rams tallest player is Sara Karamol at 5’10”.
“It is a difficult challenge with the height Grand Haven can run out there,” said Rockford coach Jessica Yonkers. “We were able to maintain contact there for a while, but they really force you to keep your mistakes to a minimum. They also have the ability to force you into a perimeter game with all of that size and we just weren’t able to make enough shots in the end.”
McCane again led Rockford with 16 points and Karamol added nine rebounds.
Next week’s action will find the Rams hosting West Catholic on Tuesday (too late for press) before journeying to East Kentwood on Friday.