The Rockford Rams varsity hockey team faced off against archrival and nemesis, the East Kentwood Falcons, on Wednesday, Feb. 24 on their home ice, and skated away with a hard-earned 4-3 victory. “This was a another true team effort that resulted in a well-deserved win for us. Everyone skated hard, played their positions and never let up. I’m very proud of the boys tonight. They earned it,” said Head Coach Ed Van Porfliet. The only scoring in the first period was a Falcons breakaway goal at the 1:42 mark, as they ran their cherry picker strategy the entire game and were able to get through on this one. Period two saw Rockford senior forward Eric Conroy even things up with a nice netter at the 13:17 mark, making it a tie game at 1-1. Assists came from senior defenseman Drake Veitenheimer and senior forward Jake Chaffee. The Rams roared back again, igniting a large and supportive crowd at the 11:19 mark with a beautiful goal from junior defenseman Eric Datema with the assist going to senior forward Cody Cantu. The Rams continued to pound away in the second when junior forward Ben Glass put one in the Falcons’ net, making it 3-1 Rams with 7:16 seconds left in the period. Assists went to Conroy and Chaffee. The action continued with East Kentwood coming back and capitalizing on the power play advantage, scoring at the 4:14 mark, and cutting the Rams’ lead back to one. The Ram charge continued in the second as Chaffee found the back of the Falcon net unassisted with 3:26 left to play, again putting the Rams up by two at 4-2 to close the period. The third period had the Rams’ penalty-killing unit work overtime, as Rockford took three penalties within seven minutes of each other, finally giving up a Falcons power play goal with 5:57 seconds left in the game, making it 4-3 Rams. Unfortunately for East Kentwood, they were hit with a taunting penalty after their score, putting the Rams on the power play. Good, solid, defensive skating combined with some breathtaking saves from junior goalie Taylor Newton was all Rockford needed to seal the victory at Rams 4, Falcons 3. On their last game of […]
Always a tough opponent, the Rams had to score early and often on the Sailors, and they did just that in the first period. Cantu put the Rams on the board first, scoring at the 13:19 mark with a nice setup assist from junior defenseman Mike VanderVelde, who also had a great night for the Rams, bringing his trademark rock solid defensive game. Less than three minutes later, Cantu found the net again at the 10:30 mark, giving the Rams a two-goal advantage. Assisting was senior defenseman Drake Veitenheimer. Although the Sailors cut the lead to one with a goal at the 9:16 mark, the Rams got the two-goal advantage back when Greco found the back of the Sailor net with 4:53 seconds left in the first to end the period 3-1 Rams. The assists went to junior forward Eric Datema and Cantu. Period two saw the Rams keep the pressure on and not let up. The Rams struck first to widen the lead on another Greco goal at the 13:45 mark, again assisted by Cantu, making it 4-1 Rams. The Sailors did manage a score with 6:05 left in the period. However, great goaltending by Christian Van Portfliet and constant pressure by all the Ram lines kept the game in check to end the second period at 4-2, Rams. The third period saw penalties on both teams, allowing Mona Shores to score on the power play at the 8:05 mark. However, Ram senior forward Jake Chaffee answered right back with a nice goal at the 6:05 mark, maintaining the Rams’ two-point advantage at 5-3. Senior forward Eric Conroy made the assist for Chaffee. From there the Rams kept up the pressure, skated hard and played smart hockey for the remainder of the game, even forcing the Sailors to commit two more penalties. This was enough to lock in a well-deserved Ram victory. The Rams’ next game is against the Grandville Bulldogs on Thursday, Feb. 4 at Southside Ice Arena. Game time is 7:00 p.m.