ROCKFORD–Reeths-Puffer hit the road Tuesday evening to take on the Rockford Rams and came home on the short end of a 64-51 decision in a non-conference battle.

Rockford jumped out to a 18-11 after the first quarter. The Rockets cut into the deficit in the second stanza by outscoring the Rams 19-17 in the quarter. Reeths-Puffer trailed Rockford 35-30 at the half.

The Rams put just enough distance between themselves and the Rockets when they outscored the visitors 15-10 in the third period to take a 50-40 lead into the fourth quarter. Reeths-Puffer could never catch up to Rockford as the Rams outscored the Rockets 14-11 during the final eight minutes.

“We struggled with turnovers in the third quarter and were trying to dig out of that hole the rest of the night,” said Reeths-Puffer coach Nate Aardema. “Rockford played tough, physical defense and that took us out of what we wanted to do a bit. “

Free-throw shooting was a big key in the contest for both squads as Rockford connected on 14-of-24 free throws and Reeths-Puffer hit 16-of-25 from the free throw line. Both teams hit nine shots from beyond the arc.

Charlie Dutsch led Rockford with a team-high 16 points. Drake Irwin tossed in 15 points (on five made three-pointers). Mikey DeKuiper scored 14 points.

Travis Ambrose led the Rockets with a game-high 25 points, 11 rebounds and he had five blocked shots. Jaxson Whitaker tossed in 14 points.

Reeths-Puffer is now 12-9 on the season and will travel to Hudsonville on Thursday to wrap up the regular season.