January 27 2011

Testing for ninth-grade honors classes sponsored by RPS Gifted and Talented Dept.

January 27, 2011 // 0 Comments

Testing for Rockford Public Schools (RPS) Freshman Center honors courses will take place at the end of April. Honors courses are offered in English and science and are carefully designed by teachers in order to meet the needs of highly able students in these particular subjects. These honors courses coincide with the RPS curriculum standards, but offer a more rigorous pace and more in-depth content. In order to participate in honors testing, current eighth-graders must submit an application and an essay, highlighting interest level and potential for participation. Visit www.rockfordschools.org/?i=GT for specific information regarding honors course descriptions and to download an application and parent recommendation. All applications for honors testing are due on March 15, 2011, at 4:00 p.m. to Judi Smith at Belmont Elementary School, 6097 Belmont Ave., Belmont, MI 49306. Honors testing will take place on Wednesday, April 27, OR Saturday, April 30, 2011. Participating students must choose one of these dates for testing. All transportation must be provided by parents for both test dates. Students must be enrolled in the RPS school district in order to test. If you have specific questions about ninth-grade honors courses, please call the Freshman Center. For questions concerning the honors testing process, please call the Gifted and Talented Office at (616) 863-6370.

Rams cheerleaders define continuous improvement

January 27, 2011 // 0 Comments

Cheering to a packed house, the Rams competitive cheer team achieved their highest score this season, with a total score of 763. What started as one of the coldest, snowiest days of the year turned out to be a huge step forward for the Lady Rams. With some of the best moves, stunts and cheers, the girls brought the crowd to its feet at the end of their third round. Finishing third to Hudsonville and West Ottawa, Coach Dengler commented, “We are gaining confidence and points in all three rounds at every competition, bringing us even closer to the other teams in the Red.” Dengler added, “I am still grinning from ear to ear five hours after the meet ended! I am so proud of my team today!” Following a tough week of practice, “We made a lot of adjustments to round three this week and it paid off in a big way for us,” Dengler said. “They executed that round with solid stunts and true Ram pride! It was rewarding for me to see the emotion they felt coming off the mat, knowing they had hit a solid round!” Senior Paige Mather commented how much she loves cheer and is excited to see the “new members of the team stepping up.” Senior Sam Foster’s excitement is also strong for the team. “We are going to finish strong this season,” she said. Coach Dengler added, “The Rams are on a roll and I am loving their progress as a team on and off of the mat.” As the cheerleaders progress into mid-season, their next meet will be Saturday, Jan. 29, in East Kentwood, followed by a home meet on Wednesday, Feb. 2.

Rams wrestlers ground Falcons

January 27, 2011 // 0 Comments

VanRooyen only Ram in finals at Holt tournament  by TIM COOPER The Rams fell behind the East Kentwood Falcons early in their dual meet on Wednesday, Jan. 19. Matt Franklin put his Falcons up 6-0 when he pinned Rockford’s Danny Apkarian early in the first period of their 160-pound match. Rockford tied the scored at six apiece after decisions in the 171- and 189-pound matches. At 171 pounds, Robby Gorton won a 6-2 decision over Ernie Morton. At 189, Brady Gent won his match over Zac Tinerella, 3-2. East Kentwood (EK) took the lead back after the 215-pound weight class, when Jesse Keenan defeated Brent Showers 10-7, making the team score 9-6. Jake Wilson of Rockford defeated Phil Morrow, 11-7, allowing the Rams to knot the score at 9. Rockford took its first lead of the night when 103-pound Steven Jendritz edged Charlie Hang in a 6-4 overtime decision. Hang had defeated Jendritz earlier this season when the two wrestled at the Kent County Classic. The Rams took a 24-9 advantage into the 125-pound match, following a 1:59 second pin by Nate Rojas over Curtis Blackwell in a 112-pound match and a void for Tyler VanRooyen at 119. EK cut the Rockford lead by three when Anthony Hang won a 6-3 decision over Cullen Maksimowski. At 130 pounds, Rockford’s Trent Boyer gave up an early takedown to pass regional qualifier Anwar Munye. Boyer battled back in the second period, receiving two near-falls and taking a 5-2 lead into the third period. Boyer built on his three-point lead in the third period, finishing with a 13-2 major decision. “I didn’t think I would beat him,” Boyer said. “The first time I tilted him, everything changed. It made me more confident. The second turn was when I knew I could win.” The Ram lead was extended further as Alex Padilla (135) and Mick DeBoer (140) both received voids, giving Rockford a 40-12 lead. Austin Geerlings of EK used 5:54 seconds to pin Peter Nugent, leading into the final match of the night. The 152-pound match between Rockford’s Austin Scogg and EK’s Niko Parks was tied 4-4 after regulation. The two would battle another two minutes in overtime, with Scogg scoring three points in the final 30 seconds […]

Rams swim past Zeeland

January 27, 2011 // 0 Comments

Over the last two weeks, the Rockford swim and dive team have proven that they will be a tough contender at the end-of-season championship meets. The Rams continued their OK Red dual meet winning streak by defeating the Jenison Wildcats 215-100 on January 13, and then by dominating the Grand Haven Buccaneers 193-116 on January 20. However, the true test for the Rams came about at Zeeland’s home pool when Rockford paired up against Zeeland for an out-of-conference dual meet on Saturday, Jan. 22. The Rams surprised the talented Zeeland team—who have not lost a dual meet in their OK Green conference yet this season—by outscoring them 110-76. Zeeland, who is currently ranked fourth in the state behind third-ranked Rockford, did not give the Rams an inch as the teams battled back and forth in every event. Rockford set the tone from the first event, the 200-yard medley relay, by swimming their fastest times yet this season while grabbing first and third. The first-place 200-yard medley relay team of Craig Wasberg, Bryan Wasberg, Ben Fredrickson and Jeff Schmitt clocked a best time of 1:38.77, with third-place Rams, Nick Willison, Jared Martella, Josh Travis and Eric Chisholm, swimming a solid 1:42.11. Rockford continued to show a lot of heart and determination, as Mike Arend seized the top spot in the 200-yard freestyle with his first state-qualifying time of the season (1:48.90), edging out Zeelands’ Sam Borgman (1:49.87). Trenton Babcock of Rockford came in third with 1:51.09. However, Zeeland turned the tables in the 200-yard IM event, with Dylan Zwiers placing first (2:00.13) and Christian Otteman picking up third (2:06.04). B. Wasberg placed second with a time of 2:01.99. Rockford gained some ground in the 50-yard free when Rockford’s Chisholm pulled out an impressive first-place finish of 21.99, followed by Chad Stears of Zeeland in second (22.63), Fredrickson of Rockford in third (23.39), and Harrison Webb of Rockford in fourth (23.69). After the 50-yard free event, the Rams were ahead 37-25. The Rockford divers knew they faced a tough challenge going into the meet, as Zeeland is home to one of the best divers in the state of Michigan. As expected, Zeeland’s Tyler Keelean dove to a first-place finish with 293.10 points. Rockford divers Kurt Plaggemars and […]

Hoopsters with heart volunteer time for kids

January 27, 2011 // 0 Comments

by MELISSA UTTER  Our Ram basketball players are ferocious on the court. Don’t tell the opposing teams this secret, though: those Ram players are softies with hearts of pure gold. Special Treasures is a group of parents and caregivers of children who have physical, cognitive, social and medical differences. This group meets once per month to support, educate, encourage and share resources with other parents who have children with “diff-abilities.” Special Treasures’ children received the gift of time from both the girls and the boys basketball teams over Christmas break. Tom Carlson, who guides Rockford Athletes with a Mission of Service (RAMS), along with Amy Kelley, one of the founders of the Special Treasures group, coordinated a two-day basketball clinic. The clinic was free to the participants, as all of the athletes and coaches generously gave of their time to enrich the lives of these children. The first day involved the girls basketball team, and the second afternoon was reserved for the boys team to serve this special population. Varsity players were poised and patient with the Special Treasures children. The atmosphere was charged with enthusiasm. It was obvious that the children were star struck with the wonderful abilities of the players. A three-point shootout, two-handed dribbling demonstration and slam dunk exhibition had the children cheering. The Special Treasures children were able to participate in a skills clinic that allowed them to play at individual levels that best fit their development. Rockford players then signed t-shirts and autograph pages for the Special Treasures kids. The basketball teams’ fan base grew quite a bit those two afternoons. Parents were so grateful for the opportunity for their children to participate in a sports clinic where competition was not stressed, but camaraderie was king. There are few athletic opportunities for children with special needs. The Special Treasures group is working to change that. Partnerships in the past to provide athletic opportunities included archery at the Rockford Sportsman’s Club and Wolverine baseball and now the recent partnership with RAMS and Rockford athletics. Generous donations of time and talents make these opportunities possible for children who are not able to typically participate in regular athletics. The group has expressed an interest in exposing the Special Treasures children to a variety […]

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