Rockford Men’s Water Polo starts strong in latest weekend tournaments

Number 5 (Junior standout Elijah Chino shoots from the outside)

The weekend tournament schedule continued for Rockford men’s water polo in Zeeland the weekend of 9/21-22/18. First up for the rams on Friday night was Jenison.

Rockford started strong again with a 5-0 led after the first quarter with two goals each from Elijah Chino and Gavin Saur and one from Zach Burns. The second quarter had two more rams finding the back of the net with Kyle Arend and Kyle Dedert with one goal each. The third quarter had Zach Burns adding 2 more goals and Nolan Graalman scoring one. In the fourth quarter, Gavin Saur added one more goal and Samuel Radtke scored on a five meter penalty shot to finish the game with a 12-2 victory.

The defense was led by the three senior captains, Kyle Arend, Zach Burns, and Gavin Saur, each with 2 steals in the game. Hudson VerWys, Kyle Dedert, Brendan Saur, and Nate Cheney each had one steal.

Saturday had Rockford defeating Okemos 11-8.

Conference play continued the following Monday, the 24th with a home game vs. Zeeland.

Zach Burns dominated with 4 of his 5 goals for the game coming in the first quarter. Elijah Chino took over in the third quarter with 4 of his 5 goals in that frame. Hudson VerWys added 2 goals and Nick Deugaw and Brendan Chaudoir each had 1 goal to give the Rams a 14-8 win. Zach Burns and Brenden Saur led the defense with 3 steals each.

This past weekend saw Rockford traveling to East Grand Rapids for another weekend tournament. Friday night had the Rams in a rematch of Monday’s game vs. Zeeland. Once again, Rockford handed Zeeland a loss with a 9-2 victory.

Leading the scoring was Elijah Chino, Gavin Saur, and Zach Burns with 2 goals each. Nolan Graalman, Nate Cheney, and Kyle Arend each added 1 goal.

The defense Racked up 20 steals for the game with Gavin Saur leading the way with 6. Hudson VerWys had 3 steals. Kyle Arend, Brendan Saur, and Zach Burns each had 2 steals. Trey Williams, Elijah Chino, Kyle Dedert, Nolan Graalman, and Bodie Mitchell each added 1 steal.

Saturday morning started early with Rockford taking on the only team to beat them this year, Hudsonville.

Number 13 ( Senior Zach Burns fights for another goal vs. Hudsonville)

The Game started out with Hudsonville leading after the first period 3-0. Each team added a goal in the second quarter for a 4-1 Hudsonville lead at the half. The third quarter saw Hudsonville add 3 more goals while Rockford could only add 1 more. In the fourth quarter came back with 3 goals to make it close in an 8-5 loss.

Kyle Arend led the Rams with 2 goals and 4 steals. Zach Burns had 1 goal and 2 steals. Elijah Chino had 1 goal and one steal and Brenden Saur had 1 goal.

With a three hour wait for their last game, Rockford got back in the pool to face Okemos. As with most Rockford / Okemos contests, the game was close throughout with Okemos leading at the half, 7-6. The third quarter saw Okemos add to their lead by two at 9-7. Both teams added 2 goals in the final quarter to give Rockford its first loss to Okemos this year, 11-9.

Leading the team in scoring were the three senior captains, Zach Burns with 4 goals, Gavin Saur with 2 goals and Kyle Arend with 1 goal. Junior captain Elijah Chino also had 1 goal and Sophomore Brenden Saur added 1 goal.

The Defense was led by Zach Burns with 3 steals. Kyle Arend and Hudson VerWys each had 1 steal.

Up next for the Rams is a home game vs. East Grand Rapids on October 3rd.