By Randy Gregory, Michigan Sports Radio

Photo By Miles Postema

 

Junior Anna Wypych has always had the ability to explode at any time during her three years as a member of the Rockford varsity basketball team. Muskegon Mona Shores found out just how devastating that explosion could be when she ripped off 34 points in less than three quarters of action for Rockford in the district championship at Rockford on Friday, March 8. The 69-27 Ram triumph ran their record to 23-1 on the season and advanced them to Regional play at Cadillac on Monday, March 11 at 7:00 P.M. versus Saginaw Heritage (14-10).

 

Wypych nailed six three-pointers and displayed a gauntlet of dazzling drives and finishes to lead a Ram attack that was spot on for the totality of the contest. In addition to Wypych’s heroics, sophomore Jordan Mateer showed her mettle with a perfect showing from the field as she finished with 16 points of her own. Mateer was a perfect four for four from beyond the arc, one foe one on two-point attempts and two for two from the charity stripe. Grace Lyons chipped in with eight points and Kate Higgins added ten rebounds and seven deflections and steals for the Rams who also got four deflections and two steals from Grace Young. Wypych joined Higgins in steals and deflections with seven of her own to help highlight the overwhelming Ram victory. Wypych also set a new school record for career assists for the Rams to cap off an incredible display of her many-tiered talents.

 

“Things really came together and the stars aligned tonight for us,” said Rockford coach Brad Wilson. “I think Mona Shores was trying to display some sort of a triangle and two defense against us, but we came out and attacked everything they threw at us from the opening whistle.

“We put up 29 points in the first quarter and really kept the pressure on them on both ends of the court. We pride ourselves on our depth and ability to get contributions from multiple players night in and night out. But tonight was a night where Anna (Wypych) showed everyone here just what she is capable of. Other schools have individuals who put up big numbers on a regular basis but we try to stress team play here. We are fortunate to┬áhave several players who can put up big numbers on any given night.”

 

On Wednesday, March 6 the Rams won their opening contest of state tourney play by topping a very talented Muskegon squad 52-42. The win was marred by the loss of standout sophomore Sienna Wolfe to a season ending knee injury in the first half that seemed to stun the Rams and affect their play for several minutes of gametime. Wolfe received an entry pass into the post and crumpled to the floor in obvious pain despite almost no contact. But in a testament to her toughness, she kept her pivot foot planted and rose back up for the basket.

 

“When you lose a player as talented as Sienna it can unnerve everyone, including the coaching staff,” said Wilson. “It took us a while to gather our composure when she went out but we knew it was just a matter of us keeping our composure and executing. We didn’t know who was going to step up for us but we have multiple options and eventually found our footing. We had beaten them pretty substantially the first time we played but that was a night where we hit nine of our first ten three-point attempts to get out to a big lead. We knew this was going to be a dog fight from the start and that is exactly what we got despite playing on our home floor. I think Muskegon got a little rattled there in the second half when we got a couple consecutive baskets and started hitting our free throws.”

 

Wypych and Lyons led the Rams with 17 points each while Higgins led on the boards again with nine rebounds.