Lauren Hulsebus

Rockford water polo second in state

June 9, 2011 // 0 Comments

What can only be described as a phenomenal season came to an end Saturday, June 4, for the Rockford girls water polo team, losing in the state final game to Okemos High School. The road to the final game began Friday with a Ram victory against a tough Ann Arbor Pioneer team. The fans were on the edges of their seats the whole contest, watching the Rams grab a tough 8-7 overtime win to advance to the semifinal game. The game started with two stubborn defenses battling to scoreless first quarter. After that, it was an evenly matched back-and-forth event until senior Lauren Hulsebus scored the winning goal late in overtime on a soft touch pass by senior Taylor Downs. The dogfight ended with junior Casey Wolfer scoring three times and sophomore Adrianna Craft scoring twice. Also adding to the goal total was senior Brandy Fase and junior Maddie Levine. Defense was the key in this game with Fase and Wolfer getting six steals apiece, Hulsebus added four steals and senior Jamie VanPortfliet had five, Downs two and Craft had one. Senior goalie Tiffany Elenbaas had nine saves in the game. Saturday morning saw the Rams at it again against the Ann Arbor Huron River Rats. This contest, however, was controlled by Rockford from start to finish. Even though Huron scored the first goal, the Rams answered with two of their own. Craft scored an unassisted goal and Downs put one to the back of the net on an awesome assist by VanPortfliet to end the first quarter up 2-1. Hulsebus and Wolfer each scored in the second stanza and Rams were up 4-1 at the half. The second half saw the River Rats scoring two goals, but it wasn’t enough. Downs and Wolfer both added goals in the third period and Hulsebus put the icing on the cake with two scores in the fourth for the 8-3 Ram victory, sending the girls into the state final game. The final game against Okemos had both teams trading goals throughout the first half. Wolfer scored once and Fase added two beautiful goals on long outside shots, and this game started out in true championship fashion with a 3-3 tie after the first half. The second half, […]