Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Sports

February 20, 2014

It's a Ramma, Slamma Jamma

Stoddard, Heschke spark Rydza's Rams into B-2 quarterfinals

MIDDLEPORT —

The only thing odd about Wednesday night’s Royalton-Hartland boys basketball Class B-2 pre-quarterfinal win over Southwestern was that NASA reported something strange on their radar screens hovering over Middleport at about 8:30 p.m.
Everyone inside the Roy-Hart gymnasium knew exactly what that something was — Rams’ forward Alex Stoddard, whose thundering, monster slam dunk from the rafters was the fitting exclamation point in No. 5 Roy-Hart’s 79-71 overtime victory over the No. 12 Trojans.
That means that Rams head coach Mark Rydza’s retirement party is on hold as his 10-9 team advances to take on No. 4 Health Sciences of Buffalo at 7 p.m. Friday in a B-2 quarterfinal. 
Stoddard was spectacular throughout, but especially down the stretch after the visitors overcame a 12-point, fourth-quarter deficit to tie the game at 62-62 and send it to OT.
“Alex has been our guy all year and he’ll most likely be a First Team all-leaguer,” Rydza said. “He does everything for us, blocks shots, scores, rebounds. Sometimes he gets a little too anxious and tries to do a little too much, but he’s the nucleus of our team.”
Stoddard’s game high 32 points included 9 in the extra session, capped, with 10 seconds left, by his high-flying, right-handed slam dunk that brought the house down.
“We were up and there wasn’t a lot of clock left, so I just went for it,” said Stoddard, who added 9 rebounds and 6 blocks for the Rams. He averages almost 19 points per game to lead his team.
“It was a big win for us because you lose and you go home,” Stoddard said. “Now we get to play Friday and if we win there, we go to Buff State. But we need to play better. We can play a lot better than that.”

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