Photo courtesy of Miles Postema:  Check out pictures of the games here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/96875625@N08/sets/72157672273467427

A team primarily known for their defensive excellence thus far in 2018, the Rockford Rams were set to face a stern test in Grandville on Friday night. After a grinding first half, Rockford’s offense exploded in the second half to carry the Rams past Grandville 42-20.

Jack Richardson started the scoring for the Rams in the first quarter as he tossed a 27-yard pass to Nate Bareno to give Rockford a 7-0 edge. It took just twenty-three seconds for Grandville to respond however, as Cam Tyler broke a 72-yard run to even the score at seven after the first quarter of play.

The second quarter saw an even stronger defensive stronghold on both sides. Neither team yielded a touchdown until Rockford’s Jaiden Friesen punched it in from two yards out with just under thirty seconds remaining in the first half, giving the Rams a 14-7 advantage.

This lead would be extended to twenty-one points within the first four minutes of the second half. A favorable bounce placed the ball into the hands of Rockford’s kicker, and he ran it forty yards for a touchdown. Three minutes later, Jack Richardson punched it in for a seven-yard touchdown run to give the Rams a 28-7 advantage.

Grandville would temporarily stop the bleeding as their fake punt call midway through the quarter resulted in Keith Bush scoring a 52-yard touchdown. The lead would expand back to 21 however as Bareno threw a five-yard ball to Maverick Pant for a score.

Each team would score once in the fourth quarter. For Rockford, they went to Jacob Vega for a eight-yard touchdown run to extend the lead to 42-12. Grandville would respond with a twenty-one yard run by Jayden VanDuesen, but they would never draw within 22 points.

Rockford extended their record to 5-3 on the year with the win, and they have now won four straight games. This week, the OK Red Championship is officially on the line when the Rams take on Kentwood. For Grandville, they officially are eliminated from the playoffs with a 3-5 record, despite playing the toughest schedule in the state of Michigan this fall. They wrap up their season at home next week against Caledonia.