Ram defense stands tall through early offensive trials

October 4, 2012 // 0 Comments

by RANDY GREGORY Coming into this season it was expected that the Rockford defense would have to carry the weight of the team early. The defense returned six starters and a few other players with extensive playing time from last year. The offense on the other hand returned only a pair of starters and a passel of question marks. That was in addition to a seemingly endless string of injuries that have permeated the offense all year long. Factor in contests against two of the top teams in the state in Lowell and Muskegon and it appeared to be a difficult to impossible task that awaited them. But they have proven more than equal to the task. Through six games the Rockford defense has only allowed an average of 12.5 points per game to a slate of opponents that probably equivocates to that played by anyone else in the state. Top-ranked  Muskegon scored the most against the Rams with 21 points. The Rockford defense has pitched one shutout with a 22-0 victory over Holt. “We have played pretty well defensively over the course of this season so far,” said Rockford coach Ralph Munger. “Coach (Randy) VanderVeen and his staff do a wonderful job of preparing for our next opponent on a weekly basis. But we can’t rest on our laurels and expect to accomplish all of the goals we wanted to this year. We need to continue to get better on a week in and week out basis.” Junior inside linebackers Brent Showers and Randy Garvin have led the way for Rockford through six games with 55 and 46 tackles respectively. Senior outside linebackers Jeff Baldwin and Blake McDonald have also been pivotal to the success of a stellar linebacker corps. Senior safety KC Zenner sat out the first two games after a lengthy rehab from a severe knee injury. He limped through the first two contests he played in but has somehow gutted his way to four interceptions as he fights to get back to full strength. “Brent Showers is just a day in day out football player,” said Rockford coach Ralph Munger. “He plays the game with a passion that you can’t teach. You can add KC Zenner to that list too. Those […]