After a tough and injury-plagued regular season, the Rockford Rams varsity hockey team had a great three-game post-season run in district regionals, finally falling to Traverse City West, 3-1, on Saturday afternoon, March 6 at Ferris State University. Round one, played on Monday, March 1, had the Rams face a very determined Creston City team. The Rams easily got past Creston City 10-0, with the game ending after two periods. Round two brought a huge post-season highlight, as the Rams again found themselves facing their archrival, the East Kentwood Falcons, on Wednesday, March 3 at home. Everyone knew this was a big one, especially since the Rams knocked the Falcons down to Tier II next year after beating them in regular season game on February 24, 4-3. In front of a very large and supportive crowd of parents, families, friends and students, the Rams moved on to round three, beating the Falcons in a real thriller, 5-3. In period one, the Falcons came out skating for revenge as both teams felt each other out. Each team took three total penalties, as it proved to be a back-and-forth battle until senior forward Jake Chaffee scored on the Ram power play at the 1:18 mark, making it 1-0 Rams to end the period. Period two had the Rams starting on the penalty kill. As both teams continued to be put in the box, the Falcons finally capitalized on the mayhem with a power play score at the 3:46 mark, making it a tie game. However, the Rams roared back and ignited the crowd when senior forward Alex Fox, positioned perfectly at the side of the Falcons’ net, put one in for the Rams at the 2:59 mark, making it 2-1 Rams. Unfortunately, the Falcons struck back and evened the score again less than a minute later, ending the very heated and hectic second period, 2-2. Period three was “do or die” and both teams knew it. The losing team was done for the season and it was going to be the last game for their seniors. The Rams scored early at the 13:16 mark when senior defenseman Robert Perry made it 3-2 Rams. After a Falcon penalty barely a minute later, the power play door opened for […]
March 11 2010
The Great American Rivalry Series is sponsored by United States Marine Corps. They started out nationally highlighting football games, but this year marks the inaugural season of ice hockey in the series. Select schools from around the nation are invited to participate in the Rivalry Series. These schools have always had “their game”—a traditional rivalry going back many years. Thousands of players have participated in this memorable event, and every year the rivalry creates its own special memories. It is “the game” the whole community looks forward to and talks about all year long. The Rivalry Series not only celebrates high school football and now hockey, it embraces its excitement, traditions and history. A donation is given to the host team for their football/hockey program as well as two college scholarships awarded to a player from each team in the rivalry. The Great American Rivalry Series strives to preserve the integrity of amateur sports and to bring “every player” something to remember for the rest of their life. One of these Rivalry Series ice hockey games was the Rockford Rams versus East Kentwood Falcons on Wednesday, Feb. 24, on Rockford’s home ice. The Rams prevailed, winning 4-3. The Rams were presented the Great American Rivalry Series cup, and the Rams’ Jake Chaffee was selected to receive the college scholarship for having the highest grade-point average of the team—a 4.02.
Two of the top Class A teams in the area squared off in the MHSAA girls basketball district finals last Friday night, March 5, in Greenville. This game promised to be an exciting contest and was a rematch of last year’s district finals match-up. Both Rockford and Northview jumped out to a fast and furious start, each trying to stake their claim and set the tone in this all-or-nothing championship game. In the end, the Lady Rams came out victorious with a 50-40 win. After four hard-fought quarters of outstanding basketball, the Rockford Rams hoisted the district championship trophy. This game featured a strong Ram team defensive effort and a balanced scoring attack. Rockford was led in points by sophomore Kimberly Weston’s 15, followed by senior Megan Kelly (14), senior Al Huyser (11), and sophomore Halle Peterson (6). Huyser also led all players with 11 total rebounds. “I’m so happy for the these seniors,” said Head Coach Jessica Yonkers. “They’ve worked so hard for so long.” Rockford’s game plan included shutting down Northview’s two leading scorers, senior guard Danielle Kaputska and Katelyn Joyce. Constant pressure defense and allowing very few open-look three-point opportunities for the Wildcats was key to the Rams’ win. The Rams’ victory puts them into state regional competition beginning Tuesday, March 9 and concluding Thursday, March 11 at Cedar Springs High School. Joining the Rams will be OK Red teams West Ottawa and Grand Haven, along with the Marquette Redettes. The winner will advance to the state quarterfinals next week.
Pox knocks Stefanski from title defense by TIM COOPER On the verge of defending his individual state championship title at 215 pounds, a childhood illness knocked senior Joe Stefanski out of the competition when he contracted chicken pox, ending his high school wrestling career one week early. Stefanski is bound for the University of Ohio next fall where he intends to play football. Six other Rockford wrestlers walked the floor of the Palace of Auburn Hills in the grand march on Thursday, March 4. The state individual high school wrestling tournament begins each year with 896 wrestlers parading their school colors before cheering fans and families. This year over 44,000 wrestling fans attended the three-day event, culminating with the individual championship matches on Saturday night, March 6. Following the opening ceremonies, six Rockford wrestlers participated in the first round of action. Senior Jake Scholten (119) led the Ram attack with a 7-1 victory over Detroit Catholic Central’s Matt Thompson. The 125-pound match saw senior Jake Byers win a 15-5 major decision over Dan Jaijo of Troy. Byers used numerous takedowns in his dominance of Jaijo, earning his advance to the second round. Sophomore Austin Scogg faced a tough opponent in Detroit Catholic Central’s Justin Melick, the eventual 135-pound champion. Scogg fell into the consolation bracket when Melick pinned him at the 1:58 mark of the match. Takedowns and releases seemed to be the order of senior Jake Johnson’s opening match in the 160-pound bracket. Johnson achieved 12 takedowns, building a 24-10 major decision over Matt Schodowski of New Baltimore Anchor Bay. Johnson, the runner-up in last year’s 160-pound tournament, showed he was determined to get back to the finals. Defending state champion at 171 pounds, senior Jake Dorulla dominated his first opponent, Ryan Erps of Pinkney. In this match Dorulla proved why he is the top-ranked wrestler in his weight class in the state of Michigan. This highly recruited wrestler has committed to Eastern Michigan University where he will continue his wrestling career next fall. First-time state qualifier, sophomore Tyler VanRooyen also found himself dropping into the consolation bracket when he lost a 7-1 decision to Macomb L’Anse Creuse North’s Lucas Banning. Early Friday morning, the two wrestlers in the consolations were back at work. […]
The Rockford High School varsity cheer squad was invited to perform with the Grand Valley State University (GVSU) cheerleaders at their home game against Northwood on February 27. In addition to cheering with the college squad, the girls also led the crowd in cheers they created just for the GVSU team during the halftime break. GVSU won their game in overtime, 72-70.